Read key points here:
- U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson argued for shipping more manufacturing jobs overseas this week in a presentation to commercial real estate agents.
- “From my standpoint, when we don’t have enough workers in this country right now, that’s a real limitation to our economic growth,” he said, according to a video of the event. “To me, it makes no sense for American workers to produce high-labor-content products. Let the billions of people around the world do that and provide us these goods — high quality, dirt cheap.
- “That to me is economically efficient. Unfortunately, we’re probably going to retrench from that, that type of policy, and I don’t see how it’s going to particularly work.”
- U.S. Rep. Mark Pocan, a Democrat from rural Dane County, called the comments “stunningly out of touch.”
- “It was spoken like a true robber baron would speak,” he said Thursday. “It’s pretty amazing that the senator from a state that has been hit so hard by outsourcing, by jobs going to Mexico and overseas, would find the answer to providing families with family-supporting wages is to continue to outsource more things overseas.”
- Johnson’s latest comments are in line with others he’s made over the years about manufacturing.
- In 2014, he told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that outsourcing was “quite beneficial to America.” He also said Republicans were wrong to raise outsourcing as an issue against Mary Burke, a former Trek Bicycle Corp. executive who was the Democratic candidate for governor that year.
- “I don’t want to demonize or demagogue against” outsourcing at Trek, he said then.