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In India: Obama Flip-Flops On Outsourcing American Jobs

by on Tuesday, November 9, 2010 at 1:10 pm EDT in India, Politics, World

It appears President Obama has two contradicting messages with regards to outsourcing American jobs overseas.  The one he chooses to voice apparently depends on whether he’s speaking here at home or to an overseas audience, and whether his statements are made before or after an election.

Here’s a video clip of the President, in May of 2009, criticizing the American tax code for giving financial incentives to corporations who outsource American jobs:

It’s a tax code that says, you should pay lower taxes if you create a job in Bangalore, India, than if you create one in Buffalo, New York. We will stop letting American companies that create jobs overseas take deductions on their expenses when they do not pay any American taxes on their profits.  And we will use the savings to give tax cuts to companies that are investing in research and development here at home. “

Here’s the President speaking to a crowd in Ohio — where 9.6% of its residents are unemployed  — on September 9, leading up to the 2010 midterm elections:

“One of the keys to job creation is to encourage companies to invest more in the United States. But for years, our tax code has actually given billions of dollars in tax breaks that encourage companies to create jobs and profits in other countries.  I want to change that. Instead of tax loopholes that incentivise investment in overseas jobs, I’m proposing a more generous, permanent extension of the tax credit that goes to companies for all the research and innovation they do right here in America,” he said, with Ohio governor Ted Strickland standing by his side.

“I think if we’re going to give tax breaks to companies, they should go to companies that create jobs in America — not those that create jobs overseas. That’s one difference between the Republican vision and the Democratic vision. And that’s what this election is all about,” Obama said.

Now, shortcut two months later to Obama speaking in India (two days ago) — post-2010 Midterm elections:

“I don’t think you heard me make outsourcing a bogeyman during the course of my visit.  In fact, I expressly said during my visit to Mumbai, at the business council, that both countries (India and the US), I think, were operating on some stereotypes that’ve outlived their usefullness,” Obama said.

“In every discussion that I have had with Indian businesses what I have seen is that our countries are matched up in a way that allows us enormous win-win potential,” he said.  “Whenever I’m asked about Indians taking away our jobs, I want to say: You know what, they’ve just created 50,000 jobs. But these old stereotypes, these old concerns ignore today’s reality. In 2010, trade between our countries is not just a one-way street of American jobs and companies moving to India.”

He added:

“We’re very proud of our high-tech industries and we think we make some of the best products in the world, and we want to sell them to a growing Indian market.  But it turns out some of those same technologies are ones that will allow Indian entrepreneurs to grow and thrive and create jobs right here in India,” Obama said.

President Obama obviously didn’t get the message from Americans who actually bothered to turn out to vote in the Midterm elections:  “It’s the jobs, Stupid!”


Tonight, The Ed Show covered Obama’s outsourcing flip-flop in India.  Here’s the video clip with a worthwhile discussion on the outsourcing problem with Teamsters President, James Hoffa: