Outsourcing bills falls short in Senate

The Senate on Tuesday decisively rejected a bill that Democrats said would have restricted the ability of U.S. companies to send jobs overseas.

Members voted 53-45 for the legislation, seven short of the 60 votes need to break a Republican filibuster. Forty GOP senators voted against the bill, along with four Democrats and independent Sen. Joe Lieberman (Conn.).

The four Democrats who crossed the aisle to oppose the bill were Sens. Max BaucusMax Sieben BaucusBaucus backing Biden's 2020 bid Bottom line Overnight Defense: McCain honored in Capitol ceremony | Mattis extends border deployment | Trump to embark on four-country trip after midterms MORE and Jon TesterJonathan (Jon) TesterCoronavirus crisis scrambles 2020 political calculus Some Democrats growing antsy as Senate talks drag on Democrats fume over GOP coronavirus bill: 'Totally inadequate' MORE of Montana, Ben Nelson of Nebraska and Mark WarnerMark Robert WarnerHackers target health care AI amid coronavirus pandemic Hillicon Valley: Coronavirus deal includes funds for mail-in voting | Twitter pulled into fight over virus disinformation | State AGs target price gouging | Apple to donate 10M masks Senator sounds alarm on cyber threats to internet connectivity during coronavirus crisis MORE of Virginia. Sens. Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiGOP senators urge Saudi Arabia to leave OPEC Schumer: Senate should 'explore' remote voting if coronavirus sparks lengthy break Turning the virus into a virtue — for the planet MORE (R-Alaska) and Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.) were not present for the vote.

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The failure of the legislation was expected; mindful of the likely defections from within their party, Democratic leaders were privately acknowledging defeat on Monday.

Democrats used the vote to portray Republicans as insensitive to the needs of American workers.

“The bill we tried to pass today is based on simple common sense: to keep American jobs here in America, we should stop forcing taxpayers in Nevada and across the nation to pay for giveaways that reward companies for sending American jobs overseas,” Majority Leader Harry ReidHarry Mason ReidGOP embraces big stimulus after years of decrying it Five Latinas who could be Biden's running mate Winners and losers from Super Tuesday MORE (D-Nev.) said.

“But Republicans continued their job-killing agenda today by protecting these tax breaks for CEOs who offshore American jobs and preserving the same failed Republican policies that cost 8 million Americans their jobs,” Reid said.

Republicans countered that the bill was an election-year gambit that would have undermined job creation with new regulations and tax hikes.

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“Desperate times call for desperate measures, and the majority is showing how desperate they are with a bill that increases the tax burden on job creators and ship much-needed U.S. jobs overseas,” said Sen. Orrin HatchOrrin Grant HatchBottom line Bottom line Trump administration backs Oracle in Supreme Court battle against Google MORE (R-Utah). 

“This proposal is the height of irresponsibility putting our economy at greater risk. Raising taxes on companies’ overseas profits will just incentivize them to move their domestic facilities to another country. That’s not the prescription that will cure our ailing economy,” Hatch said.

The bill was aimed at small manufacturers and included a payroll tax exemption for companies that move jobs to the U.S. But it also contained provisions to prevent businesses from deferring U.S. taxes on the income they make from foreign subsidiaries.

Business groups such as the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) were strongly opposed to the legislation, dubbed the Creating American Jobs and End Offshoring Act. NAM sent a letter to Senators on Friday arguing the measure would make U.S. corporations less competitive and hurt job creation.