Gov. Strickland To Dayton’s UAW: “I Am Honored To Be Part Of You. We Are In This Together”

In his talk, yesterday, at the UAW Hall in Dayton, Gov. Strickland emphasized that as a member of congress and as Ohio’s governor, he has done everything possible to help working families. He said, “I am honored to be with you in this union hall. I am honored to be part of you. We are in this together.” He was warmly received by the 60 people, or so, in attendance.

Strickland said the recession that has cost so many jobs did not have to happen, but was the direct result of the failed policies of George Bush and the Republicans. And he said his opponent, John Kasich, and other Republican candidates — Rob Portman and Mike DeWine — are “retreads” with “no new ideas.” Strickland charged: “All they want to do is to take us back to the Bush economic policies that brought this recession on in the first place.”

Strickland said that between he and Kasich there are stark differences — revealed in their congressional records. Strickland said Kasich was a “Wall Streeter Congressman” during his 18 years in congress — consistently voting for laws to allow the outsourcing of good jobs and to give tax cuts for the very wealthy, and that Kasich consistently voted against measures to help working families. Kasich voted for NAFTA, Strickland was opposed. Kasich voted to give China most favored trade status, Strickland was opposed.

In the question period (not captured on my video becuase my battery expired), one member pointed out, with great appreciation, an important part of Strickland’s congressional record: Strickland voted against approving the Iraq War.

This is my second post about Strickland’s speech to Dayton’s UAW.  Also see: Gov. Strickland Blasts Kasich’s Opposition To Accepting $400 Million To Build A New Train System In Ohio

The talk is divided into two segments — an edited transcript follows each segment.

Thank you. I am happy to be here. I came here today to talk as candidly as possible about what is at stake in this election. Some elections the difference between the candidates is minor. But I can tell you, when it comes to John Kasich and me we just flat out disagree about everything that is important to you, your families and community. We flat out disagree. The differences are stark and they are the result of the history the two of us have in congress and our time since leaving congress.

John Kasich was in congress for 18 years. I was there for 12 years and if you look at our records they are as different as day and night.

So I want to talk with you about some of the differences and the choice people will be facing this year. On NAFTA, I voted “No,” Kasich voted, “Yes.” There was a vote on whether to grant China most favored trade status. I voted “No,” he voted, “Yes.”

Kasich record is worse than simply casting those votes. As chairmen of the House Budget Committee, Kasich put forth a budget that eliminated Trade Adjustment Assistance. TAA, as it is called, is a federal program to help workers who lost their jobs because of outsourcing from unfair trade, from the subsidizing of imports… And Kasich tried to eliminate this program. That shows a major difference between us.

John Kasich was a Wall Street congressman long before he went to Wall Street (to work for Lehman Brothers). He put forth budgets that cut child nutrition programs. He wanted to privatize Social Security. He wanted to cut education. He left congress after 18 years and tried to run for president for a few months. That didn’t go so well. So he was rewarded with a job on Wall Street. He became on the the managing directors for Lehman Brothers. …

As a director of Lehman Brothers, Kasich approached the Ohio public pension system, pitching investments with Lehman Brothers. … In 2008, the only year he revealed his tax returns. …. He reported that he received a bonus of over $400,000. What was happening in Lehman Brothers when he was getting that bonus. They were headed for bankruptcy and that bankruptcy cost Ohio pensions over $400 million. No wonder he won’t release his other tax returns — because we don’t know how many millions he received from Lehman Brothers up to that time.

Kasich is a Wall Streeter to the core. He was a wall streeter even before he went to wall street, because what he did in congress supported the outsourcing of our jobs. He provided tax cuts to the most wealthy people in our country. What Kasich did in congress was not to work for you or me or the people we know and associate with, he always stood up for the already wealthy. so he has become a millionaire. There’s nothing wrong with becoming a millionaire, but I’d like to know what he did to earn those millions. I’d like to know what deals he was involved in. I’d like to know what he did for Lehman Brothers that qualified him to get a $400,000 bonus as the company was going into bankruptcy. … It raises some questions that Ohioans deserve to have answered before they go vote. What happened on Wall Street is responsible for jobs that we lost.

My Dad was a steel worker and he supported his nine kids. I understand what it like to be a working person. I understand what it means to be unemployed.

Ohio is the only state in America that froze tuition for two years. … We’ve done more than any other state to hold down cost for college. We’ve invested in education. We’ve invested in job training.

Last month we created 17,000 jobs. We are starting to claw our way back. People need to understand that this ditch is really deep and as the president said, “The people who put this car in the ditch now want to be given the keys. they want the keys back.” the point is, the policies that created this recession, a recession that did not have to happen, are the same policies that John Kasich, and Rob Portman, and Mike DeWine advocate. … Talk about retreads. They want to come back and do more of what they’ve already done… They have no new ideas. No new ideas. All they want to do is support tax cuts for the richest people in America, support Wall Streeters who want to outsource our jobs. They want to place the tax burden increasingly on the backs of working people.

I’ve cut taxes since I was governor. If you were a senior citizen and own a home you got a tax cut. … We are trying to give support to people who work for a living.

Ohio has been hit hard. Outsourcing has probably effected this part of Ohio more than any other region in our state. You see the consequences of having the trade policy and having the values that led to the trade policies we’ve seen. … It is time to take care of the working middle class. It is time we reject the policies of John Kasich and Rob Portman and Mike DeWine and all of the others who can only say “No.” They have no new ideas. … All they want to do is to take us back to the Bush economic policies that brought this recession on in the first place. And so, I need your help. Lee Fisher needs your help. Richard Cordray needs your help. …

This is an important time. Early voting states in 52 days. We’d like to see 50% of the votes cast before election day. I’ve done everything I can do to support you.

I believe Ohio has a bright future …. we have everything we need in Ohio to be successful …

I am honored to be with you in this union hall. I am honored to be part of you, we are in this together. …

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