Letter to Scott A. Blackmun, Chief Executive Officer, United States Olympic Committee

Letter

By:  Ed Perlmutter Jon Runyan Jim Langevin
Date: July 16, 2012
Location: Washington, DC

Perlmutter, Langevin, Runyan Send Bipartisan Letter To U.S. Olympic Committee

In response to a United States Olympic Committee (USOC) letter addressing concerns about Team USA's uniforms, Rep. Jim Langevin (D-RI), Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D-CO) and Rep. Jon Runyan (R-NJ), who have all worked with the Committee as co-chairs of the bipartisan Congressional Olympic and Paralympic Caucus, sent the following response to the USOC today:

July 16, 2012

Scott A. Blackmun
Chief Executive Officer
United States Olympic Committee
1 Olympic Plaza
Colorado Spring, CO 80909

Dear Mr. Blackmun,

Thank you for your letter to the Congressional Olympic and Paralympic Caucus responding to concerns about this year's Team USA uniforms being manufactured in China.

We are grateful for the strong working relationship that the USOC has had with the Caucus, not only in relation to the Olympic and Paralympic Games, but also to further many other important initiatives, such as the USOC-sponsored Adaptive Sports Military Program and the involvement of Olympic and Paralympic athletes in programs supporting disadvantaged youth. This issue will not interfere with supporting our wonderful athletes who have worked so hard to represent our country in London, and we remain proud to help recognize their incredible inspiration and community involvement.

However, while we applaud the announcement that Ralph Lauren will domestically manufacture Team USA apparel for 2014, we would urge you to consider additional steps that can be taken to address this matter, particularly with the Olympics taking up so much of the national spotlight in the coming weeks.

To continue our economic recovery and ensure we have an economy built to last, we have to make things here in our country again. These are jobs and products that can and should be created in America, not outsourced overseas. We would appreciate your quick response as to whether it would be possible, with American factories standing at the ready to produce on short notice, to at least rectify the situation for the Paralympic Games that begin late next month by making uniforms in America for our paralympians.

We have seen firsthand how the USOC recognizes the tremendous potential to use the Team USA brand to help others and build stronger communities. We hope this circumstance can be used as an opportunity to send a message about the strength of American manufacturing and American workers.

Thank you for all that you do to make Team USA a continued source of national pride, and we look forward to our continued dialogue on this and other issues involving the USOC and our amazing athletes.

Sincerely,

Jim Langevin
Member of Congress

Ed Perlmutter
Member of Congress

Jon Runyan
Member of Congress