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Senate Proceeding on May 3rd, 2011 :: 0:11:00 to 0:21:10
Total video length: 2 hours 33 minutes Stream Tools: Stream Overview | Edit Time

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Lamar Alexander

0:11:00 to 0:21:10( Edit History Discussion )
Speech By: Lamar Alexander

Lamar Alexander

0:11:04 to 0:11:24( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: next 30 minutes. is en the presiding officer: -- mr. alexander: madam president? the presiding officer: the senator from tennessee. mr. alexander: i rise to talk about a piece of legislation which will be both a bill that senator graham and senator demint and i will introduce tomorrow, and an amendment that

Lamar Alexander

0:11:25 to 0:11:46( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: i filed to the small business bill on behalf of the three of us. we're calling it the right to work protection act, and it's our have an

Lamar Alexander

0:11:47 to 0:12:07( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: action that the national labor relations board has taken against the boeing company and the plant that they are building in south carolina. the national labor relations board has moved to stop boeing from building airplanes at a nonunion plant in south

Lamar Alexander

0:12:08 to 0:12:28( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: carolina, suggesting that a unionized american company cannot expand its operations into one of 22 states with the right to work laws. these laws protect a worker's right to join or not to join a union. in fact, new hampshire's

Lamar Alexander

0:12:29 to 0:12:50( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: legislature has just approved it's becoming the 23rd such state. this reminds me -- this incident by the national labor relations board reminds me -- of a white house dinner in february 1979 when i was governor of tennessee. the occupant of the chair has been to those dinners.

Lamar Alexander

0:12:51 to 0:13:11( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: the president has them every year. the only ones invited are the governors, themselves and their spouse, and for me it was always one of the highlights of the year. so my first such dinner was with president carter in 1979. as a new governor, i was paying close attention to what the president of the united states had to say.

Lamar Alexander

0:13:12 to 0:13:33( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: and this is what he said: he said governors, go to japan, persuade them to make here what they sell here. i had walked a thousand miles across tennessee to be governor the year before, and i don't suspect one single tennesseean to me said to me the first thing you do when you get in office is

Lamar Alexander

0:13:34 to 0:13:57( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: go to japan. that was not on our minds, but it was tough economic times. not many people were investing anywhere in the united states at that time. and i thought, well, if the president of the united states says governors go to japan, persuade them to make sure what they sell here, that i should do that. make sure what they sell here

Lamar Alexander

0:13:58 to 0:14:20( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: was then the union battle cry, was part of an effort to slow the tide of japanese cars and trucks entering the u.s. market. at that time americans were very worried about japan. there were books about japan being number one. and the fear was that japan would overwhelm us economically. and the cars and trucks from

Lamar Alexander

0:14:21 to 0:14:41( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: japan were fuel-efficient, they were selling, and manufacturers and the united auto workers here were concerned that we'd lose a lot of jobs. and so the cry was to the japanese, if you're going to sell it in the united states, you need to make it in the united states.

Lamar Alexander

0:14:42 to 0:15:02( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: so off i went to tokyo to meet with the nissan executives who were then deciding where to put their first united states manufacturing plant. at that time japan had very few manufacturing plants in the united states. they made there what they sold here. i carried with me on this trip a

Lamar Alexander

0:15:03 to 0:15:24( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: photograph taken at night from a satellite showing the country with all of its lights on. try to visualize that. because what you see, if you look at a photograph of the united states at night, are a lot of lights east of the mississippi river, but it's pretty dark almost until you get to california and there are a lot of lights down around texas.

Lamar Alexander

0:15:25 to 0:15:45( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: so i was trying to make a point and the japanese executives who didn't know very much about tennessee and i didn't know very much about japan would say to me, where is tennessee? and i would point to our state and say we are right in the middle of the lights. my argument, of course, was that locating a a plant in the population -- a plant in the

Lamar Alexander

0:15:46 to 0:16:07( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: population center in the united states would reduce the cost of transporting cars to customers. that population center 70 years or 80 years ago was in the midwest where the american automobile was literally invented. and it made a lot of sense to build almost all the plants there because transportation costs were less when you send

Lamar Alexander

0:16:08 to 0:16:28( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: these heavy cars and trucks to the customers. so you locate your plant near the population center. but gradually that population center migrated south from the midwest where most u.s. plants have been to kentucky and tennessee. then the japanese, to whom i was talking, examined a second decision. tennessee had a right-to-work

Lamar Alexander

0:16:29 to 0:16:51( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: law and kentucky did not. that meant that in kentucky workers would have to join the united autoworkers union. workers in tennessee had a choice. in 1980 nissan chose tennessee, a state then with almost no auto jobs. today auto assembly plants and suppliers supply one-third of

Lamar Alexander

0:16:52 to 0:17:12( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: our state's manufacturing jobs. tennessee's home for the production of the leaf, nissan's all-electric vehicle and the batteries that power it. i'm happy to report it works well. i bought one. parked in the garage of the apartment where i live here. recently nissan announced that

Lamar Alexander

0:17:13 to 0:17:33( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: 85% of the cars and trucks it sells in the united states will be made in the united states making it one of the largest so-called american auto companies in nearly -- and nearly fulfilling mr. carter's request of 30 years ago. but now unions want to make it illegal for a company that has

Lamar Alexander

0:17:34 to 0:17:56( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: experienced repeated strikes to move production to a state with a right-to-work law. what would this mean for the future of american auto jobs? jobs would flee overseas as manufacturers look for a competitive environment in which to make and sell cars around the world. it's happened before.

Lamar Alexander

0:17:57 to 0:18:17( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: david halpestand, 196 book, "the reckoning" tells the story. he quotes american motors president george remove any who criticized the shared monopoly -- quote -- "consisting of the big three detroit auto manufacturers and united autoworkers." remove any warned -- quote -- "there is nothing more

Lamar Alexander

0:18:18 to 0:18:38( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: vulnerable than entrenched success." detroit ignored si sawn who in the 1960's began selling funny little cars to american customers. we all know what happened to the employment in the big three companies much even when troit saw greener pastures in a right to work state, its partnership with united autoworkers could

Lamar Alexander

0:18:39 to 0:18:59( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: not compete. they located their plant in springfield, tennessee, hoping side-by-side competion would help the americans beat the japanese. after 25 years nonunion nissan operated the most efficient plant in north america, the saturn u.a.w. partnership never

Lamar Alexander

0:19:00 to 0:19:20( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: made a partnership. last year g.m. closed saturn. g.m. success is one reason that they located -- kia, mercedes-benz, hyandui and hundreds of suppliers have chosen eastern right to work

Lamar Alexander

0:19:21 to 0:19:42( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: states. under right to work laws, they may join yiewns. three times they rejected organizing themselves like saturn employees a few miles away. our goal should be to make it easier and cheaper to create private-sector jobs in this country. giving workers the right to join

Lamar Alexander

0:19:43 to 0:20:03( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: or not to join a union helps to create a competitive environment in which more manufacturers like nissan can make here 85% of what they sell here. madam president, i would like to ask unanimous consent to place in the record the bill and the amendment that i and senator graham and senator demint will

Lamar Alexander

0:20:04 to 0:20:25( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: be introducing as a bill tomorrow and which we filed as amendment today. i would like to -- the presiding officer: without objection. mr. alexander: thank you. and i'd like to add i saw today a -- a a representative -- a representative of the whirlpool company which has 2,500 employees in tennessee.

Lamar Alexander

0:20:26 to 0:20:46( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: he said that whirlpool makes 82% of what they sell in the united states here in the united states, but that they have a choice. they have plants in mexico as well. one more example of why allowing states to have a right-to-work law keeps jobs in our -- in our country.

Lamar Alexander

0:20:47 to 0:21:07( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: now, madam president, i see on the floor senator demint whose state is directly affected by this nlrb decision. he and i are working together on this legislation and -- and i'm sure that he has comments on the legislation and on the decision of the nlrb. the presiding officer: the senator from south carolina.

Lamar Alexander

0:21:08 to 0:21:11( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: demint demint thank you,

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