WASHINGTON (CBSNewYork) — Below you will find a transcript of the weekly Democratic address, delivered by Wisconsin Senator Tammy Baldwin.
Hi, I’m Tammy Baldwin and I have the honor of working for Wisconsin in the United States Senate.
In Wisconsin, we have a strong work ethic, and a long and proud tradition of making things – paper, engines, ships, motorcycles – and yes, cheese, brats, and beer. We possess one of the largest manufacturing sectors in the nation, supporting a large share of our workforce and exporting goods all over America and the world.
However, for too long, big and powerful multinational corporations have dictated how unfair trade deals and foreign acquisitions are negotiated – and American workers have seen their jobs shipped overseas.
It’s simply wrong for Washington to leave our workers behind with shuttered factories and lower wages. That’s why I’ve been fighting for years to build a made in America economy that rewards hard work and helps workers get ahead.
Wisconsin families depend on our manufacturing jobs, and I believe if we give our workers and manufacturers a level playing field, we will compete and we will win.
To level the playing field, Democrats are proposing a Better Deal – a Better Deal that prevents trade deals from hurting our workers, takes on China’s cheating, and puts an end to rewarding companies with tax cuts for shipping jobs and factories to other countries. We would also put in place stronger Buy America requirements for all taxpayer-funded projects.
Folks outside of Wisconsin may not know the city of Neenah – and I always tell them, just look down. A great Wisconsin manufacturer, Neenah Foundry, has been making manhole covers for 145 years. The men and women who work at Neenah Foundry help build our nation’s water infrastructure, and they deserve a solid commitment from us on a strong Buy America standard that rewards their hard work.
In fact, I wrote Buy America legislation because I strongly believe American workers should build our infrastructure with American products, and taxpayer money should not be spent on iron and steel from foreign countries like China and Russia.
My Buy America reform passed the Senate with bipartisan support. But when it got to the House, the foreign steel companies bought Washington lobbyists to kill it. Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell gave them what they wanted, and American workers were left behind again.
In April, President Trump came to Wisconsin – and he announced his support for my Buy America legislation – but Congressional Republican leadership continues to stand in the way.
This needs to change. It’s time Washington put American manufacturers and workers first, ahead of powerful special interests.
Our Better Deal will close loopholes that provide foreign producers access to large sums of your taxpayer dollars. We would also require that taxpayer dollars be spent on U.S. companies and U.S. jobs for all federal public works projects. Put simply, our reforms will make sure the federal government is spending American tax dollars to buy products made in America.
The bottom line is this – Democrats and Republicans agree that we need a major federal investment to rebuild our roads, bridges and water infrastructure. Now, we need Republicans to stand with us, with our manufacturers, and with American workers.
Let’s get the job done on strong Buy America reform. Let’s get people to work rebuilding our infrastructure, with the words, ‘Made in America.’