Congressman Young Prefers Foreign-Made Materials, Voted to Weaken Buy American Provisions and Leave Hoosier Workers Unprotected

INDIANAPOLIS – The consistency in Congressman Todd Young’s history of harming Hoosier workers is alarming. He has repeatedly voted against requiring government projects to use materials made in America, under the Buy American Act, instead supporting allowing trade deals to undermine safeguards for Hoosier workers.

“Congressman Todd Young continually proves he is not interested in promoting and protecting America’s workers,” said John Zody, Chairman of the Indiana Democratic Party. “Congressman Young’s repeated votes against the Buy American Act would undermine the safeguards Hoosier workers depend on to keep their jobs. Hoosier workers count on the trade and manufacturing protections that Congressman Young wants to weaken. From making it easier for companies to steal Hoosier jobs and ship them overseas, and rejecting vital retraining programs for laid-off Hoosiers from outsourcing, to his love of dangerous free trade deals that leave Hoosiers out to dry, Congressman Young is no friend to Hoosier workers.”

Congressman Young’s robust record of seeking to dismantle protections for Hoosier workers includes his belief that the auto industry should have gone “belly up” and leave 100,000 Hoosiers jobless, and taking campaign money from corporations that give away Hoosier jobs to foreign countries.

BACKGROUND INFORMATION:

2015: Young Voted In Committee Against An Amendment That Would Have Prohibited Trade Deals That Weaken Or Undermine Requirements Of The Buy American Act.  In April 2015, Young voted against an amendment that would have, according to Congressional Quarterly “prohibit[ed] trade agreements that weaken, undermine or necessitate a waiver from requirements of the Buy American Act.” The underlying legislation was a Trade Promotion Authority bill. The vote was on the amendment. The House Ways and Means committee rejected the amendment by a vote of 14 to 22. [Congressional Quarterly, 4/23/15; Congressional Actions, H.R. 1890]

YOUNG VOTED AGAINST REQUIRING MATERIALS FOR GOVERNMENT PROJECTS BE MANUFACTURED IN AMERICA

Young Voted Against Requiring That All Materials Used For Conduit Hydropower Generation Be Manufactured In The U.S. In April 2013, Young voted against a: “Garamendi, D-Calif., motion to recommit the bill to the House Natural Resources Committee and report it back immediately with an amendment that would require that, when practicable, all materials used for conduit hydropower generation be manufactured in the United States.” The motion was rejected by a 194-226 vote. [CQ, 4/10/13; motion to recommit H.R. 678, Vote 95, 4/10/13]

Young Voted Against Prohibiting Loan Guarantees Unless The Energy Department Certifies That At Least 75% Of The Materials Used For The Construction Of New Energy Loan Projects Are Produced In The U.S., Unless It Is Not Feasible To Obtain Them Domestically. In September 2012, Young voted against a: “Markey, D-Mass., motion to recommit the bill to the Energy and Commerce Committee and report it back immediately with an amendment that would prohibit loan guarantees unless the Energy Department certifies that at least 75 percent of the materials used for the construction of new energy loan projects are produced in the United States, unless it is not feasible to obtain them domestically. Any such projects would also have to be located in the United States. The amendment also would make the bill’s prohibition on new loan guarantees contingent on extension of the wind energy production tax credit.” The motion was rejected by a 175-234 vote. [CQ, 9/14/12; motion to recommit H.R. 6213, Vote 583, 9/14/12]

Young Voted Against Requiring The Interior Secretary To Ensure That All Items Offered For Sale In National Park Gift Shops Or Visitor Centers Are Made In The U.S. In June 2012, Young voted against a: “Perlmutter, D-Colo., motion to recommit the bill to the House Natural Resources Committee and report it back immediately with an amendment that would allow the Agriculture and Interior departments to enter into contracts with a state to treat insect-infected trees and remove hazardous fuels in order to reduce the risk of wildfires. It would clarify that nothing in the bill would override Native American Tribal sovereignty. It also would require the Interior secretary to ensure that all items offered for sale in National Park gift shops or visitor centers are made in the United States.” The motion was rejected by a 188-234 vote. [CQ, 6/19/12; motion to recommit H.R. 2578, Vote 386, 6/19/12]

Young Voted Against Requiring That All Materials Used In Hydropower Construction Projects Authorized By H.R. 2842 Be Manufactured In The U.S. In March 2012, Young voted against a: “Garamendi, D-Calif., motion to recommit the bill to the House Natural Resources Committee with instructions to report it back immediately with an amendment that would require that all materials used in hydropower construction projects authorized by the bill be manufactured in the United States.” The motion was rejected by a 182-237 vote. [CQ, 3/7/12; motion to recommit H.R. 2842, Vote 99, 3/7/12]

Young Voted Against Requiring That A Permit For The Keystone XL Pipeline Not Be Issued Or Deemed Issued Unless The Permit Applicant Can Certify And Provide Adequate Documentation To FERC That At Least 75% Of The Iron And Steel To Be Used In The U.S. Portion Of The Pipeline Is Being Produced In North America. In February 2012, Young voted against a: “Doyle, D-Pa., amendment that would require that a permit for the Keystone XL pipeline not be issued or deemed issued unless the permit applicant can certify and provide adequate documentation to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission that at least 75 percent of the iron and steel to be used in the U.S. portion of the pipeline is being produced in North America.” The motion was rejected 193-234. [CQ, 2/15/12; H.Amdt.935 to H.R. 3408, Vote 58, 2/15/12]

2012: Young Voted To Oppose Strengthening “Buy American” Rules For Federally Funded Transportation Projects By Not Allowing Segmented Projects. In May 2012, Young voted to oppose a motion to instruct conferees negotiating a surface transportation bill that, according to Congressional Quarterly, was “aimed at reviving [Rep. Nick Rahall’s (D-WV)] earlier attempt to strengthen ‘Buy American’ restrictions for transportation projects. […] Rahall’s motion has similar objectives to a bill […] he introduced last year aimed at making it harder for construction companies to obtain waivers to existing Buy American provisions enforced by the Transportation Department. The proposal would disallow segmenting projects and require greater public notice and comment periods on waiver requests for the domestic purchasing restrictions. It also would require reviews and an annual report on waivers granted by federal officials.” The vote was on a motion to instruct House conferees to agree to certain provisions in the Senate’s version of the legislation; the House agreed to the motion by a vote of 245 to 169. The conference committee later reported out a compromise version of the transportation legislation, which included the provisions addressing the segmentation issue. The conference committee’s version of the legislation passed both chambers and was signed into law by the president. [House Vote 293, 5/18/12; Congressional Actions,H.R.4348; Congressional Quarterly, 5/16/12; Conference Report, H.R. 4348; Blog post, Alliance for American Manufacturing, 6/29/12]

Project Segmentation Involved One Federally Funded Project Being Divided Into Separate Contracts, Which Allowed The Individual Contractors To Avoid “Buy American” Provisions During The California Bay Bridge Project That Used 343,000 Tons Of Chinese-Made Steel. According to the Congressional Record, Rep. Nick Rahall (D-WV) said, “Even though more than $320 million of Federal aid highway funds were spent on the Bay Bridge project, the project was divided into 20 separate construction projects. As a result, 343,000 tons of steel for the project were manufactured in China by a Chinese State-owned company that had no prior bridge-building experience—no prior bridge-building experience, employed 3,000 workers on the project, including welders, polishers, and engineers. These workers could be American workers, with our engineers designing the bridge and our workers welding the girders on our steel manufactured here at home and guaranteed to be much safer.” [Congressional Record, 5/17/12]

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