The workforce in Indiana's Second District is among the very best in the world. From transmissions and electronics to manufactured homes and military Humvees, the quality products produced by Hoosier workers are critical to our economy and make the world a better place.
However, in recent years, the challenges posed by the global economy and unfair trade practices have fallen squarely on the shoulders of American workers and hometown Hoosier businesses. Unfortunately, the result is often lost jobs, reduced wages and benefits, and employers moving production overseas or shutting down altogether. In fact, since 2000, America has lost over 3 million manufacturing jobs to foreign countries.
While I recognize that we live and must compete in a global economy, our trade policies must be fair for everybody. That is why I have co-sponsored legislation to support fair trade policies that would allow American workers to compete while also promoting labor and environmental standards both here at home and around the globe. Additionally, earlier this year, I was a lead co-sponsor of legislation passed into law to increase the minimum wage from $5.15 to $7.25 an hour, benefiting nearly 13 million working Americans.
I have long believed a decent job is the foundation upon which our families are built. Good jobs and fair wages make it possible to feed our families, educate our children, and retire in dignity. As a result, I am a strong believer that it is the right of every worker to organize and bargain collectively for fair pay, benefits, and appropriate working conditions.
As your Congressman, I will continue to work hard to ensure that our businesses can compete on level a playing field and that the American workers can share in the prosperity of the global economy.