Making a new push Tuesday to highlight instances where stimulus dollars helped companies create jobs overseas, Republicans are looking to flip the script on President Obama's frequent charges that Mitt Romney supported the outsourcing of American jobs.
At an event in Iowa on Tuesday, Republican National Committee (RNC) Chairman Reince Priebus will debut a new website — ObamanomicsOutsourced.com — that features companies that received stimulus dollars and opened factories in foreign countries. Among the examples: a solar panel factory in Mexico, windmills in Denmark and a battery manufacturer in South Korea.
There's evidence the tactic is working. A set of swing state polls released by Quinnipiac late last month showed voters, and particularly independents, were souring on Romney's business record and ability to handle the economy. Of swing-state voters who said commercials have changed their opinion on whom to vote for, some 76 percent say they now favor Obama, versus 16 percent who say they've switched their vote to Romney, according to a survey released Monday by USA Today and Gallup.
"It was Mitt Romney who made his business experience the centerpiece of his qualification to be president," said Bill Burton, a former White House aide who now runs the super-PAC supporting the president's campaign, in a statement. "It is becoming clear that as voters learn about the negative impact his time in business had on many middle-class families, the more concerned they are about the kind of president he would be."
But Republicans believe they can get mileage out of highlighting instances where stimulus dollars resulted in jobs overseas — or at the very least blunt Obama's criticisms and highlight his ties to the unpopular stimulus program.
“President Obama has promised over and over that he would focus on creating ‘jobs that pay well and can’t be outsourced,’ but his record speaks otherwise,” said Priebus in a statement. “Through his ‘stimulus’ program, billions of dollars from hardworking taxpayers were sent overseas.
"The outsourcer in chief is going around the country touting his ‘jobs record,’ but the only positive record he has is creating jobs in faraway places like Finland and South Korea. He has resorted to vicious distortions of Gov. Romney’s private-sector business experience because he’s trying to distract from his own record of sending American dollars to fund diesel engines in Thailand and build wind turbines in Italy,” Priebus said.
The RNC also released a teaser trailer Monday on YouTube that featured a map showing money traveling from the United States to China and declaring the president had "a record of failure spanning the globe."
Meanwhile, the Romney campaign also looked to bash the president on outsourcing Monday night, circulating a Washington Post article to reporters that highlighted discontent among some liberals critical of the Obama administration's trade and visa policies.