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Senator Sanders: Obama's jobs panel head closed 25 U.S. plants and outsourced thousands of jobs. [View All]

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Better Believe It Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-22-11 06:19 PM
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Senator Sanders: Obama's jobs panel head closed 25 U.S. plants and outsourced thousands of jobs.
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News Release:
Sanders Hopes Immelt Focuses on U.S. Jobs
January 21, 2011

WINDSOR, Vt., Jan. 21 - President Obama today named Jeffrey R. Immelt, chairman and chief executive of General Electric, to lead the President's Council on Jobs and Competitiveness.

The GE chairman has been outspoken about job growth - not in the United States but in China. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) hoped the appointment means Immelt has reformed his thinking.

"I hope he changes his mind and focuses on rebuilding the manufacturing sector here in the United States, not in China, and in the process creates millions of good-paying jobs," Sanders said during a visit to this once-thriving industrial community in Vermont's Connecticut River Valley.

"For the sake of our manufacturing sector and the collapsing middle class, let's hope that Mr. Immelt's appointment by President Obama indicates a transformation in his thinking," Sanders added. "It is time for GE and other large and profitable corporations to start investing in America again."

Since 2009, General Electric has closed more than 25 manufacturing plants in the United States and slashed thousands of jobs, according to the United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers of America. GE now employs more workers overseas than it does in the United States. While GE has laid off at least 10,000 workers in the United States, it has created more than 30,000 jobs in India over the past decade.

In a Senate floor speech last month, Sanders discussed the disappearance of manufacturing jobs in the United States. During the 8 hour speech, the senator cited a statement by Immelt at an investors' meeting on Dec. 6, 2002. Said Immelt: "When I am talking to GE managers, I talk China, China, China, China, China. You need to be there. You need to change the way people talk about it and how they get there. I am a nut on China. Outsourcing from China is going to grow to $5 billion. We are building a tech center in China. Every discussion today has to center on China. The cost basis is extremely attractive."

Immelt's views were consistent with those of his predecessors at GE. Former CEO Jack Welch spoke in 2000 of the company's search for cheap labor: "Ideally, we'd have every plant we own on a barge." And Frank Doyle, a former GE executive vice president, was unusually blunt in a 1995 interview when he told Business Week magazine about the company's workforce policies: "We did a lot of violence to the expectations of the American workforce....We downsized. We delayered. And we outsourced."


GE Promotes Manufacturing Jobs in US, Then Ships 'em Overseas
By Mike Elk
Campaign for America's Future
July 21, 2009

Jeffery Immelt, the CEO of General Electric, has led the outsourcing charge in the past. So commentators were shocked last month when, speaking at the Detroit Economic Club, Immelt said that the United States needs to invest in American manufacturing in order to get out of our current economic crisis.

While Immelt was calling for manufacturing to stay in the U.S., his company was at the same time shipping manufacturing jobs overseas by canceling an order with an American-based wind turbine maker, ATI Casting Service in LaPorte, Ind., so that GE could instead buy the parts from a factory in China.

Recently, ATI made $30 million worth of investments to buy, convert, and modernize a shuttered factory in economically ravaged Michigan so the company could provide more parts to GE as the green economy expands with federal stimulus funding. But a Chinese firm underbid ATI, and the factory faced having to lay off 302 union workers and shutter the plant.

In an aggressive bid to keep the factory open, ATI offered to match the price of the Chinese producers. GE once again said they would prefer to buy from China. The ATI plant is now closed, the jobs gone.

Read the full article at:


In 'reboot,' Obama names GE's Immelt to head new jobs panel
Board replaces one that had been chaired by former Fed Chairman Paul Volcker
NBC, and news services
January 21, 2011

President Barack Obama is restructuring his economic advisory board to place an emphasis on job creation, and he is naming General Electric CEO Jeffrey Immelt as its new head.

The new board, called the President's Council on Jobs and Competitiveness, will replace the former Economic Recovery Advisory Board that had been chaired by former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker. Volcker has said he was ending his tenure on the panel when its mandate expires on Feb. 6.

Immelt, a member of the board of the New York Federal Reserve Bank, has been a frequent visitor to the White House and attended a CEOs meeting with Obama and visiting Chinese President Hu Jintao on Wednesday.

So his appointment adds another corporate insider to the White House orbit, underscoring the White House's efforts to build stronger ties to the business community. Earlier this month, Obama named former commerce secretary and JPMorgan Chase executive William Daley as chief of staff.

Immelt has been a White House ally since the start of Obama's presidency, though his political contributions tend to be bipartisan and he financially supported Hillary Rodham Clinton and Republicans John McCain, Rudy Giuliani and Mitt Romney during the 2008 presidential elections.

Read the full article at:

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