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Public Statements

Democratic Radio Address to the Nation

Location: Unknown

April 3, 2004 Saturday




SENATOR KERRY: Good morning. This is John Kerry. Thanks for letting me spend a few minutes with you talking about one of the biggest challenges America faces: how to create and keep good jobs here at home. Hard work has always been a basic American value. Good jobs mean that people can pay their bills, save for their family's future, hold their head up with dignity and pride. But today in so many places, jobs are on the run. Just a couple of days ago, the company that makes the little red Radio Flyer wagon decided to start building them in China, eliminating the jobs of the people who worked at the plant in Chicago and letting another piece of America vanish.

For three years, President Bush's administration has stood by while we've had the greatest job loss since the Great Depression. The Republican Congress has passed just about every economic plan that George Bush has proposed and what do we have to show for it? Nearly three million jobs have disappeared or have been sent overseas. The truth is that this administration just hasn't made creating new jobs or fighting for the ones we have a top priority. They've put tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans first and put job creation last. From cars to computer software to call centers, millions of Americans have seen their jobs sent overseas. We can't retreat from the global economy and bring back every last industry or protect every current job, but we can do better.

In December, President Bush's Commerce Department hosted workshops to train American companies in outsourcing and to specifically encourage them to export jobs to China. Earlier this year, the president's chief economic advisor said that outsourcing jobs is a-quote-"good thing." And just this week, we heard Treasury Secretary John Snow tell us that sending jobs offshore makes out economy-quote-"stronger." Well, I guess we just see things differently.

I believe America is stronger when we create good jobs here at home. I believe we need a new direction for our country and that's why I've detailed an economic plan to put our jobs first and create ten million new jobs in the next four years. Here's what we'll do: we will end laws that actually give companies tax breaks to send jobs overseas and corporate headquarters to Bermuda. And we'll plow back every dollar we save into new incentives to help companies create and keep jobs in America. I believe in exporting American products all over the world, but I don't believe our tax code should encourage companies to export American jobs.

Today, we actually end up paying companies $12 billion a year to send their money and ship our jobs overseas. I've outlined a plan to use that money at home in order to give corporations and small businesses the help they need to cut their taxes and create new jobs. Under my plan, 99 percent of all American businesses, corporations will get a tax cut. To compete and win in the global economy, we need to do more to build the industries of the future and make sure Americans have the skills and education and training they need to go toe-to-toe with workers around the world. When American workers get a fair shot, they can out-compete workers anywhere else in the world, that over and over again, this administration has looked the other way while other countries break the trade rules that they agreed to. We will show our trading partners that America means business when it comes to enforcing our trade agreements. We're also going to bring fiscal discipline back to Washington. In the 1990s, we created 23 million new jobs when we got the deficit under control and we can do it again.

Finally, we need smart tax cuts that really work. Under my plan, 98 percent of all Americans and 99 percent of companies will get a tax cut. Instead of tax giveaways to the wealthiest Americans and to special interests, we're going to have a real tax cut so that middle class families can make ends meet and our businesses can create jobs. We're going to help the Americans who are doing what's right. Creating ten million new jobs is not going to be easy, but I know that Americans can get it done. If we believe in ourselves and invest in our future and if we have a president ready to go to work everyday, roll up his sleeves, and lead the fight for America's jobs, that's the kind of leadership we need.

This is John Kerry. I hope you have a good weekend and thanks very much for listening.

Copyright 2004 The Federal News Service, Inc.

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