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Monday, February 6, 2012

Op/Ed: Michigan Senatorial Candidate Peter Hoekstra miss the mark in Super Bowl Ad


Photo Credit-Hinderland
It's a known fact that placing advertisements in the beginning, during or directly after the Super Bowl is an expensive venture. With such, if a organization or Super-Political Action Committee (PAC) were to invest in such a venture the should want to ensure that their commercial is effective, clear, present a call to respond and clearly address a point or respond to a unmet need.

Michigan Republican Senatorial Candidate Peter Hoekstra's first "campaign ad" launched directly after the Super Bowl didn't meet one of the points a advertisement should seek to answer above. In fact, the commercial was down right insulting, racist and road under the line of indecently against current Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-Michigan) and the Asian-American community.

In the commercial, an Asian actress on a bicycle appearing near what looked like a rice field, uses broken English to consistently mispronounce Senator's Stabenow last name as "Spend-it-now". The actress states Senator Stabenow would prefer to move American jobs to China and "thanks" the Senator for providing  jobs to her country.

Nothing could be further from the truth. Senator Stabenow's record supporting American economic stability against countries who use a competitive advantage by manipulating their currency and, keeping American jobs for workers is strong.

"A strong bipartisan majority in the U.S. Senate tonight voted in favor of a bill cosponsored by Senator Debbie Stabenow to crackdown on countries, like China, involved in artificially manipulating their currency. 
"I've been fighting to stop China's illegal action on currency for years, and the fact that the Senate has finally passed this bill is a major victory for our businesses and workers," said Sen. Stabenow.  
"China's currency manipulation directly translates to lost American jobs and suffering for families, especially in Michigan. Standing up to China to stop their illegal activity creates American jobs and reduces the deficit at the same time." 
Currency manipulation, the act of a country purposefully devaluing its own currency, distorts exchange rates, making the manipulating country's goods artificially cheaper while making other nations' goods more expensive. Estimates suggest stopping China's illegal currency manipulation could help spur the creation of up to 1.6 million American jobs, while stopping manipulation in all countries could create as many as 2.25 million. 
And ending currency manipulation would also reduce the deficit-the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office reports that initial duties collected from Stabenow's plan to stop manipulation would save $65 million. However by creating new economic activity and jobs, some estimates suggest total deficit reduction would ultimately be in the hundreds of billions of dollars.
U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) applauded the filing of a petition by the United Steelworkers (USW), under section 301 of U.S. trade laws, which will help the federal government build a case against China's unfair trade practices. 
Through the World Trade Organization (WTO), a successful challenge by the U.S. would require China to end policies that stimulate and protect their own domestic producers of clean-energy technology at the expense of American manufacturing and research & development investment, taking away jobs from hard working people across our country. 
"I support the efforts of the USW to keep China honest because I believe that we need enforcement of trade policies that were meant to protect American jobs and our nation's economy," said Senator Stabenow. 
"Michigan workers have been the most affected by these unfair trade policies, taking away jobs and investment from our state's manufacturing sector. China has done nothing but ignore the rules set forth by the WTO since joining ten years ago. They manipulate their currency, they prevent American companies from competing for government business, and now they're cheating in trying to create a clean energy sector. I hope the Administration moves forward on the latest attempt to hold China accountable," she stated.
Let's quickly review former Republican Congressman and now GOP Senatorial Candidate Hoesktra record on China and/or keeping jobs for American workers.

During his time as a U.S. House Representative, along with former President George W. Bush (R), Congressman Hoekstra supported increasing the number of "highly skilled" foreign nationals allowed to enter the United States via H-1B visa and employment based (EB visa) green card processes in a so-called "SKIL Bill".

‘SKIL Bill’ Would Provide Critical Permanent Fix to Programs U.S. Employers Need to Hire Highly Educated Foreign Talent
Washington D.C. – Compete America today praised the introduction of the “SKIL Bill” by Representative John Shadegg (R-AZ) to reform both the H-1B visa and employment based (EB visa) green card processes.   
The legislation is cosponsored by Representatives John Campbell (R-CA), K. Michael Conaway (R-TX), John T. Doolittle (R-CA), Jeff Flake (R-AZ), Peter Hoekstra (R-MI), Michael McCaul (R-TX), Mike Pence (R-IN), John Shimkus (R-IL) and Todd Tiahrt (R-KS).  
A companion measure, S. 2691, was introduced last month by Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) in the Senate. 
The introduction of the SKIL Bill in the House is the latest indicator that both the U.S. Congress and Bush Administration are prepared to fix a growing competitiveness crisis for the United States and reform the visa system for highly educated foreign nationals. 
Among the provisions of the SKIL Bill (Securing Knowledge Innovation and Leadership) endorsed by Compete America are the following:
  • Exemptions for U.S. educated foreign workers with master’s or higher degrees from the H-1B and EB green card quotas so their talent can be retained in the United States.
  • Creation of a flexible, market-based H-1B cap so that U.S. employers are not locked out of hiring critical talent for over a year at a time.
  • Extension of foreign students’ post curricular optional practical training from 12 months to 24 months to allow them to transition more easily from student to green card.
  • Exemptions for EB green card immigrant spouses and children from the annual cap, thus making more visas available for the innovative professionals we need.
So if elected, Senator Hoekstra would agree with our current Governor Rick Snyder (R) that the "answer" for decreasing Michigan's 9.3% Unemployment Rate, is to increase H-1B and EB Green Cards for foreign nationals from countries like China.

And we must remember, that it was no other than Gov. Rick Snyder, who announced his support for candidate Peter Hoekstra in August, five months and 8 days prior to Hoekstra's "Super Bowl" ad yesterday.

Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder considers his former primary opponent Pete Hoekstra a friend and the right person to join the U.S. Senate. 
“We need the best, and that’s why I’m proud to be here today to endorse Pete Hoekstra,” Snyder said this morning at a press conference in Southfield. “It’s a great opportunity because he’s a person -- through the campaign process -- I gained a lot of respect for in recognition that he is the right person for this position," Snyder stated during the Southfield, Michigan based press conference with Peter Hoesktra.
“There are two very, very different visions for Americans; different visions for Washington, and we will bring out that stark contrast in a way that is dignified to show our respect for the voters of Michigan," Hoekstra said regarding Stabenow.
Michigan Senatorial Candidate
Peter Hoekstra and Gov. Rick
Snyder (R-Michigan)
That's exactly true, as in the last statement Michigan's GOP Senate Candidate Hoekstra stated about his vision, versus actual policies Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-Michigan) has advocated for in Congress.

Candidate Hoekstra supports like Gov. Snyder, increasing work for foreign nationals from countries similar to China -who manipulate their currency to provide a competitive advantage against the United States. Sen. Stabenow has used her authority in Washington, D.C. to cease such actions.

Two very different visions, indeed.

Maybe next time since Hoekstra and Gov. Snyder 'are such good friends'; Snyder can give his co-hort Peter better advice on how to run a Super Bowl Ad, since Gov. Snyder would have expertise in this manner with his former "One Tough Nerd" for Michigan Gubernatorial campaign first introduction to the public advertisement on February 8, 2010.

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