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If an iPhone is put together in a Chinese factory, where is it “manufactured”? Seems like a simple question, doesn’t it?
Here at the AFL-CIO, we keep an eye out for tricky things big corporations and the 1% try to do in Washington to hurt working people. So we see a lot of outrageous stuff, but this one even we can’t quite believe. For years our government has made trade deals that hurt working people by destroying jobs and driving down wages. It’s gotten so bad that even many “free traders” now admit deals like NAFTA killed jobs. But this is kind of a problem if you’re a big corporation that wants to do more NAFTA-style trade deals.
So what’s the corporate plan? Simple—cook the books. Or better yet, get the government to cook the books by calling things that actually are made in Mexico and China “domestically produced” just because someone in America did something connected with the company that sells them. There are people in the Obama administration who are ready to cook the books by changing how the United States reports manufacturing and foreign trade data, making trade agreements and corporate outsourcers look good—and we need to stop them.
The Obama administration is accepting public comments about this right now; if we get enough submitted, we can stop this change from happening. Submit a comment now to tell them you oppose counting iPhones, Air Jordans or any other products made overseas as “American.”
This proposal sounds too absurd to be real, but it’s happening—and it could have huge consequences for all of us.
Corporations and the politicians they control will use this doctored data to make another push for more job-destroying free trade agreements, like NAFTA, because the doctored data will hide the devastating effects “free trade” has on working families here and abroad and on our environment.
With public pressure from you, we were able to stall an irresponsible “fast track” trade bill from moving in Congress. Let’s do it again with this equally ridiculous idea.
Tell the Obama administration that cooking the books is just plain wrong, and hiding the consequences of bad trade deals just adds insult to injury to working families here and abroad: