Congressman Dave Loebsack (D-IA) released an ad (see above) that attacks John Deere for outsourcing jobs since his opponent John Archer works for them. John Deere provides the most manufacturing jobs in Iowa, and he wants to criticize them for doing some outsourcing? Considering John Deere is an international company with locations worldwide with offices, plants and other facilities in more than 30 countries that is a baseless charge. Especially when you look at the fact they are the largest employer in Davenport, Dubuque and Waterloo. They also employ Iowans in Ankeny, Des Moines, Klemme, Ottumwa and Rock Valley. Simply put they have created thousands of jobs in Iowa.
This is a poorly thought out strategy on Dave Loebsack’s part. His opponent, John Archer, responded to the ad that was released yesterday:
On the very day that over 400 people found out they are losing their job today at Siemens in Ft. Madison, Congressman Dave Loebsack attacks one of the 2nd District’s largest employers, John Deere. I’m proud to have spent more than a decade working at John Deere, alongside thousands of other Iowans. Dave Loebsack is so out of touch with what it takes to create real good-paying jobs, he attacks John Deere, while voting to spend our tax dollars for supposed job stimulus that ultimately stimulated jobs in China.
Dave Loebsack’s desperate attacks are exactly why Washington has failed to get our economy back on track. Instead of trying to help put America back to work, Loebsack and his Washington friends are attacking John Deere, a global company that has helped thousands of employees raise their families in Iowa. While Loebsack has spent his time in Washington making it harder for businesses to grow, I will take my private sector experience to Washington and help job creators, not attack them.
Dave Loebsack certainly does not understand hard working Iowans.
The irony here is that Dave Loebsack doesn’t seem to mind taking money from the very company he attacks. The Iowa Republican reports that Loebsack received $7000 in the last two election cycles from John Deere PAC. He didn’t have any problems with them in 2008 or 2010 evidently.
Update: I received a state from Ken Golden the Director of Global Public Relations of Deere & Company. He made the following points.
It is essential that Deere & Company’s strong job performance be accurately reflected. Deere has added more than 5,000 jobs to its U.S. workforce in the past two years. In addition, more than half of our capital improvements at John Deere have been in U.S. facilities in recent years. As an example, we have invested more than one billion dollars in our Waterloo, Iowa facilities in the past eight years.
·Our record overall proves a strong commitment to American manufacturing. John Deere is a global enterprise. In our history, we have moved the manufacturing of various products or components to different locations so that the company remains globally competitive. Jobs have moved to and from U.S. factories.
Also Republican Party of Iowa Chair, A.J. Spiker issued the following statement this afternoon, “Rather than attack Iowa’s job creators, Dave Loebsack should be explaining to Iowa taxpayers why he voted to send their money to foreign companies overseas. Dave Loebsack is clearly not working for Iowa, as evidenced by his very own website."
2nd Update: Ken Golden got back to me on a question I had about how many people John Deere employs in Iowa. They employ over 15,100 people in Iowa. They have increased that by 2000 over the last couple of years, and Loebsack wants to complain about them adding 900 jobs in Mexico when they added jobs in his home state?
3rd Update: John Archer released another statement including response from former John Deere employees.
(DAVENPORT) – Demonstrating just how out-of-touch Dave Loebsack is with Iowa families, he suggests that the Quad City based John Deere is “part of the problem” in a recent television ad. In the new ad, Dave Loebsack attacks John Archer for his decade of work at John Deere, saying companies like John Deere are negatively impacting the Iowa worker. Many Iowans, not to mention former and current workers at John Deere, are upset by Loebsack’s desperate political attacks.
“Many Iowans know someone who works for John Deere, considering they are one of the largest employers in a number of Iowa cities. Many more Iowans are proud owners of John Deere lawn mowers and tractors. This is the time of year many hard working Iowans, including myself, are taking our green tractors into the field. I cannot believe Congressman Loebsack would attack John Deere,” said John Deere tractor owner and Donahue resident John Maxwell.
Roger Bridges, a retired John Deere production worker and manager for 34 years, said, “Congressman Loebsack’s TV ad attacking John Deere is unbelievable. The ad makes no mention of the thousands of jobs created in the U.S. as a result of John Deere being a global enterprise with its business partners. Attacking one of Iowa’s largest employers that is celebrating its 175th year in 2012 is not only poor campaigning; it is narrow-minded and uninformed.”
“John Deere is not the problem,” Archer said. “Congressman Loebsack is the problem. This attack shows his true colors towards American business. He should be embarrassed for attacking the longtime Iowa employer that has created jobs for our families.”
This could be a disaster for Congressman Loebsack.