Pushing to make 'American jobs matter'

HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) -- What would you say if someone told you that more than 100 billion of your tax dollars went to help create jobs in other countries? It's a shocking number that the state's defense contractors and sub-contractors would like to change.

The push is on for the 'American Jobs Matter Act.'

Flanagan Industries is just one of an estimated 1,000 sub-contractors in Connecticut making parts for the aerospace industry, a large chunk of their business is parts for military aircraft for the defense department.
Despite cutbacks there is still a lot of money and jobs involved: 8.4 billion for the Pratt & Whitney powered Joint Strike fighter plane; 6.2 billion for two new Electric Boat subs; and 2.2 billion for Sikorsky helicopters.

However, each year more and more of the contracts are going to companies over seas.
Over a four year period the federal government spent 124 billion of your tax dollars for goods made in other countries.  

Friday, one of the owners of Harrington Industries, joined with the state's two U.S. Senators in calling for change.

"When our work is placed over seas, we have no idea where it goes, what went, or how to get it back," said Kevin Flanagan, Flanagan Industries.

Senators Chris Murphy and Richard Blumenthal are sponsoring a bill that would require defense contracts also consider jobs in the U.S. in part of the bidding process.

"American taxpayer dollars should be spent on American companies and American jobs, period, stop," said Sen. Murphy.

One example; a German company outbid a Connecticut company for submarine parts, the German government subsidizes the health care of their employees making it impossible for the Connecticut company to compete.

"The affect on American jobs must be considered...that's a very simple principle that is often disregarded," Sen. Blumenthal said.

During the time that our federal government spent $124 billion on goods from overseas, it is estimated that 1.7 million manufacturing jobs were lost in this country.

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