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Senate Proceeding on May 17th, 2011 :: 0:39:20 to 0:53:10
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Lamar Alexander

0:39:20 to 0:39:41( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: senator from tennessee. mr. alexander: madam president, i congratulate the senator from oklahoma in making a perfectly obvious and compelling point, which the problem is high gasoline prices. and why is the democratic solution to raise them more? which is all that their tax would do. the republican plan for dealing with high gasoline prices is to find more american energy and use less.

Lamar Alexander

0:39:20 to 0:53:10( Edit History Discussion )
Speech By: Lamar Alexander

Lamar Alexander

0:39:42 to 0:40:04( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: the democratic plan seems to be to find less and tax more. that's not going to solve the problem. we need to use less, we agree with that, and there are a variety of ways to do that, through conservation, electric cars, which i favor. finding research for crops -- for alternative fuels from crops

Lamar Alexander

0:40:05 to 0:40:25( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: that we don't eat, all that. but more importantly, we need to find more american energy and natural gas offshore, on federal lands and in alaska. that won't completely solve the problem of high gasoline prices, but it will help. if less oil from libya is a factor in raising gasoline

Lamar Alexander

0:40:26 to 0:40:47( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: prices, more oil from the united states would be a factor in lowering gasoline prices. we still, after all, are the third largest producer of oil in the world. so i thank the senator from oklahoma for an excellent point. the democratic proposal is to

Lamar Alexander

0:40:48 to 0:41:08( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: find less american energy and to tax more. now, today, madam president, i'd like to talk about another subject. i'd like to speak about the events of the last few weeks that have followed the decision by the national labor relations board council to file a complaint against the boeing company alleging basically that

Lamar Alexander

0:41:09 to 0:41:29( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: the fact that they are expanding their production of airliners at a new plant in south carolina, which is a right-to-work state, is prima facie and evidence of an unfair labor practice. this in effect establishes for the first time since the taft-hartley act was passed in 1947 the idea that it is against

Lamar Alexander

0:41:30 to 0:41:52( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: the federal law for a company that is producing in a union state to move -- to expand its facilities in a right-to-work state of which there are 22. what we're talking about is the first new plant in 40 years to build large airplanes.

Lamar Alexander

0:41:53 to 0:42:14( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: the boeing company builds most of its planes in washington state. it's the nation's largest exporter. it has 170,000 employees around the world. 155,000 of them are employees in the united states. these are good jobs. but at the hearing on thursday, the general counsel of boeing

Lamar Alexander

0:42:15 to 0:42:35( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: said that boeing expects to lose the appeal of the general counsel's -- well, of the decision of the general counsel when it's heard before an administrative judge on june 15, and then they expect to lose the appeal of that decision to the national labor relations board because he assumes that the

Lamar Alexander

0:42:36 to 0:42:58( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: general counsel is following the same view of the law that the president's appointees on the national labor relations board are following. and then he expects to win the states court of appeals or perhaps even to the supreme court. but that takes, madam president, two to five years for all that to happen. so i ask what happens to

Lamar Alexander

0:42:59 to 0:43:19( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: american jobs in the meantime? well, first, this complaint against boeing will slow the number of good new jobs into my state of tennessee, which has a 9% unemployment rate and has had for two years. i've watched our state grow over the last 30 years, from the time

Lamar Alexander

0:43:20 to 0:43:40( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: i was governor. we had a hearing last week that senator harkin called, chairman of the health, education and labor committee, about middle-class incomes, and what i said at the hearing was the effect on middle-class incomes in tennessee, the state i know the most about, is that 30 years

Lamar Alexander

0:43:41 to 0:44:05( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: ago we were the third poorest state, and then because the auto industry chose to come to our state, partly because it was a central location in the population market and partly because it's a right-to-work state with a different sort of labor environment in it than other states, because the auto industry came to tennessee, middle incomes have gone up. a third of our manufacturing

Lamar Alexander

0:44:06 to 0:44:28( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: jobs in our state are now auto jobs. nissan is there, general motors is there, volkswagen just came there. hundreds of suppliers have come to tennessee. they like the environment. they like the road system. they like the central location, but they like the right-to-work law. and for suddenly any supplier or any manufacturer who wants to

Lamar Alexander

0:44:29 to 0:44:49( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: create a new facility in one of the 22 right-to-work states, including tennessee, according to this council, is going to have to think twice because that company -- which could be a small company -- may not want to spend two to five years before the national labor relations board. so i think this council knew exactly what he was doing. he was trying to freeze job

Lamar Alexander

0:44:50 to 0:45:11( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: expansion in the united states at a time when we need job expansion in the united states. madam president, there is an unintended consequence to this. if jobs can't move into tennessee and other trite work states because of the boeing complicate they may not move into the states that don't have a right-to-work law.

Lamar Alexander

0:45:12 to 0:45:33( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: according to the c.e.o. of boeing, he said and you intended consequence, he means of the boeing complaint, is that forward thinking chief executive officers also would be reluctant to place new plants in unionized states less they be forever restricted from placing future plants across the country.

Lamar Alexander

0:45:34 to 0:45:54( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: so if you want to put a plant in, say, michigan, which is a unionized state, you might not do that because under the general council of the nlrb's rule of law, you then couldn't move to south carolina or to tennessee or to arkansas or to any other state with a right-to-work law. well, if you can't go to a

Lamar Alexander

0:45:55 to 0:46:16( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: unionized state and if you can't go it a right-to-work state, where do you go if you want to make things? you go overseas, madam president. this action by the nlrb general council is the single most important action that i can imagine that would make it more difficult to create good, new

Lamar Alexander

0:46:17 to 0:46:39( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: jobs in tennessee and that would make it more likely that manufacturing jobs would go overseas. madam president, the president -- the president of the united states asked the chief executive of boeing, mr. churny, to chair the export council. i presume that mr. obama would

Lamar Alexander

0:46:40 to 0:47:00( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: like mr. mcnerni to do is export airplanes, not export jobs. but what the nlrb ruling will do is cause the export of jobs, not the export of airplanes. boeing has 170,000 employees. most of them today are in the united states.

Lamar Alexander

0:47:01 to 0:47:21( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: but boeing sells its airplanes everywhere in the world and boeing can make its airplanes anywhere in the world. and so there may be other countries who come to boeing and to other manufacturers in the united states who say, we want you to make in our country what you sell in our country. and after this nlrb decision, they may be more tempted to do

Lamar Alexander

0:47:22 to 0:47:42( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: that. now, fortunately, there are other trends suggesting that -- that manufacturing companies around the world may be more likely in the next few years to make here what they sell here in the united states. that's what president carter said to us governors 30 years ago. governors go to japan persuade them to make in the united

Lamar Alexander

0:47:43 to 0:48:03( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: states what they sell in the united states. off i went to tokyo and i asked nissan to come to tennessee. they chose us because of our education an right-to-work law just as many other auto jobs have done that. nissan tells me that soon they will be making 85 opinion of what they sell in the united states, they'll be making it in the united states.

Lamar Alexander

0:48:04 to 0:48:25( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: 30 years ago they were making almost none of what they sold in the united states here in the united states. they're making it in japan. we were worried then japan was going to take us over. but that's changed. now they're making here what they sell here. the economist article this week says that there may be a -- a manufacturing renaissance company.

Lamar Alexander

0:48:26 to 0:48:46( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: what's happening in china, where they're making things today, is a lot like what happened in japan 30 years ago. it's china becomes more prosperous, wages will go up. as japan became more prosperous 30 years ago, wages weren't up. and so -- went up. so in the auto industry wages

Lamar Alexander

0:48:47 to 0:49:07( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: was 70% or 80% in what a supplier may spend to make a part in an assembly plant, it gets to be less important and people look at other things and so manufacturers would look at a variety of actions by a government before the manufacturer decides where to make the airplane or where to make the car or where to make the appliance that might be sold

Lamar Alexander

0:49:08 to 0:49:28( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: in a country. well, they're going to have plenty of incentives naturally to make a lot of things in the united states because the country that -- that has pro -- produces 25% of all the money in the world which we do is going to be buying a lot of stuff unless we do our best to throw a big, wet blanket on making here what we sell here which is

Lamar Alexander

0:49:29 to 0:49:49( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: precisely what this administration has been doing. we have a high corporate income tax. now give the president the credit. he said, maybe we want to change that, well, we should. because it makes it better for manufacturers to make things overseas. the health care law takes the profits away from companies that they might use to create new

Lamar Alexander

0:49:50 to 0:50:10( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: jobs here. i've had heads of restaurant companies here they're not going to invest anymore in the united states because the health care taxes take away all of their profits, regulations that make credit harder to get, regulation that's drive up energy an gasoline prices, all of this makes it harder to make here

Lamar Alexander

0:50:11 to 0:50:34( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: what manufacturers sell here. and now we have a regulation from the national labor relations board that may affect the law for two to five years that says prima patienta evidence of unfair labor practices that a company producing in a union state moves to a right-to-work state.

Lamar Alexander

0:50:35 to 0:50:55( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: this is an assault on every middle-income tennesseans and every middle-income american. as the boeing chief executive said, it could be just as much of a disincentive to a state like michigan or illinois or some other state that does not right-to-work law,

Lamar Alexander

0:50:56 to 0:51:16( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: because if -- why would you put a plant in michigan if later you wouldn't be allowed to put it in tennessee. if general motors has plants in both right to work and nonright-to-work states. so we're going to make it more difficult for general motors to expand in america, so where are they going to expand? they can expand overseas.

Lamar Alexander

0:51:17 to 0:51:37( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: they can be making there what they sell there instead of make it here. some of my friend on the other side of the aisle like to talk about outsourcing jobs. this is the mother of all outsourcing jobs plans, the idea that's prima facia evidence for a company that expands in a right-to-work state that that's an unfair labor practice.

Lamar Alexander

0:51:38 to 0:52:01( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: so, madam president, for the next two to five years we have the unhealthy situation for jobs that any manufacturer who wants to expand will have to think twice about expanding in a right-to-work state and then think at least once about coming in the first place to a state that doesn't have a right-to-work law. and the only other option i can

Lamar Alexander

0:52:02 to 0:52:23( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: see for those jobs is to make them overseas. that will not only slow job growth in the united states where we desperately need it, but it will be speeding up the sending of american jobs overseas. madam president, i ask consent to place in the record two articles.

Lamar Alexander

0:52:24 to 0:52:47( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: one by george will this week on the south carolina boeing plant and the action of the national labor relations board complaint and the second an article from "the economist" magazine. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. alexander: thank you, madam president, i yield the floor and i notice quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk

Lamar Alexander

0:52:48 to 0:52:53( Edit History Discussion )

Lamar Alexander: will call the roll.

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