FACT CHECK: Portman Is The Best Senator China’s Ever Had

Politico: “Portman urged the President not to impose restrictions on cheap Chinese steel imports, causing a drop in sales and job losses for the U.S. steel industry.”

COLUMBUS, OH -- Just like the ultimate Washington insider that he is, Senator Portman is out with a new, false ad claiming he’s stood up to China to protect Ohio steel  -- but the truth is that Portman has a decades long record of supporting unfair trade policies that have hurt Ohio’s steel industry and outsourced hundreds of thousands of jobs to places like China.

Politico wrote that “Portman urged the President not to impose restrictions on cheap Chinese steel imports, causing a drop in sales and job losses for the U.S. steel industry.” And a new Roll Call article highlights how Portman’s “years of supporting trade agreements puts him at odds with GOP voters.”

The Strickland campaign also recently released this digital ad, “Shameless,” using video footage of Portman praising China and advocating for the job killing trade deals to highlight Portman’s dishonesty about his record on trade.

SHAMELESS

Shameless.jpg

From David Bergstein, Strickland Campaign Spokesman: “The only time Senator Portman has stood up to China is when he got out of his chair to cut job killing trade deals with them. The truth is that Portman has an unabashed, decades-long record of pushing unfair trade policies that have outsourced hundreds of thousands of our jobs to places like China -- and Portman actually advocated against cracking down on unfair Chinese steel imports that were hurting Ohio’s steel industry. Here’s the truth about Senator Portman: he’s an insider, a ‘dedicated outsourcer,’ and the best senator China’s ever had.”

See the facts about Portman’s false ad for yourself:

  • Columbus Dispatch: Strickland and Portman have “polar opposite” records on trade. “The voting records of Strickland and Portman are polar opposites. As a member of the U.S. House from 1993 through 2005, Portman voted for the North American Free Trade Agreement with Canada and Mexico and for Permanent Normal Trade Relations with China.When he was U.S. trade representative under President George W. Bush in 2005, Portman helped guide the Central American Free Trade Agreement through Congress. By contrast, as a member of the House, Strickland opposed NAFTA, permanent trade relations with China and the Central American pact.” [Columbus Dispatch,5/20/16]

  • CATO Institute: “Portman has a pro-trade record that is ripe for criticism,” “Strickland, has a nearly opposite record on trade.” “Rob Portman, has a pro-trade record that is ripe for criticism in today's political environment. Portman has a strong record in support of free trade during his time as the U.S. trade representative, and in both the U.S. House and Senate...Portman's challenger, Democratic former Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland, has a nearly opposite record on trade. During his more than 10 years in the House, he voted against all the trade agreements Portman supported.” [Cleveland Plain Dealer,5/27/16]

  • U.S. Business And Industry Council Official Called Portman A “Dedicated Outsourcer.” [CQ Today, 3/17/05]

  • Columbus Dispatch: Portman “Has Never Met A Free Trade Agreement He Didn’t Like.” [Columbus Dispatch, 7/11/10]

  • Cleveland Plain Dealer Editorial: Portman Is A “Free Trade Disciple.” [Plain Dealer, Editorial, 3/18/05]

  • Cincinnati Enquirer: Portman Has “Been A Consistent Champion Of Free Trade” Despite The Fact That Ohio “Has Seen Thousands Of Jobs Move Overseas.” [Cincinnati Enquirer, 3/18/05]

  • AP: Portman “Has Been A Strong Advocate Of Free Trade Even Though He Comes From A State That Has Been Hit Hard By Job Losses.” [Associated Press, 3/17/05]

  • World Trade Review: Portman Said Legislation To Crack Down on Chinese Currency Manipulation Was “Counter-Productive.” [World Trade Review, 1/15/05]

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