Categorized | CPA, Politics, Tax, Trade

The Coalition for a Prosperous America Hosted “Meet the Candidate of PA 12”

February 21, 2012

News Release

Contact:  Sara Haimowitz, 413-341-3166
[email protected]

The Coalition for a Prosperous America Hosted “Meet the Candidate of PA 12”

The Coalition for a Prosperous America (CPA) held “Meet the Candidates of PA 12” at the Sheraton Pittsburgh North this morning.  Candidates Keith Rothfus (R, challenger), Jason Altmire (D, current 4th District) and Mark Critz (D, current 12th District) attended and responded to questions about trade, manufacturing, and the economy.    The event was co-sponsored by SMC Business Councils, the Pittsburgh NTMA, THE CHAMBER of Commerce, Inc., Carbis Walker, LLP, and MLP Steel.

Due to redistricting, two of Pennsylvania’s current US Congressmen - Jason Altmire and Mark Critz - must compete in the April 24 Primary Election for the Democratic nomination in the newly formed 12th Congressional District.  The winner will face the Republican nominee, who will likely be Kieth Rothfus, in the fall General Election.  Mr. Rothfus is currently unopposed in the Republican Primary.  He ran against Mr. Altmire in the last congressional election, losing by less than 1%.

“We appreciate the candidates’ willingness to attend an open forum on rebalancing trade and the revitalization of manufacturing,” said Dave Frengel, CPA .  “Our economic crisis was caused in large part by ill-conceived trade policy and a toxic trade deficit.  We are dedicated to educating candidates, voters and elected officials so they make smart decisions on future trade policy.”

Cong. Altmire explained that America’s massive trade deficit, especially with China, demonstrates that U.S. trade policy has not adjusted to the realities of the new global economy.  For this reason he voted against the free trade agreements with South Korea, Columbia, Peru, and Panama.  He says the U.S. must find effective ways to stand up against China for cheating on trade without upsetting the economy.  Altmire is concerned that the U.S. tax code incentivizes companies to offshore rather than to invest in America.

Regarding tax reform, Rothfus reported that he has reviewed Cong. Paul Ryan’s (R-WI) plan and is giving thought to Ryan’s proposal to include a value-added tax in a new tax code.   Done properly, this could improve the global competitiveness of domestic producers, broaden the tax base, increase tax revenues, and lower the tax burden on American individuals and businesses.

Cong. Critz had also begun to dig into the details of how to implement a value-added tax to overcome the advantage our trading partners gain over U.S. producers by rebating value-added taxes on exports.  He is also promoting the Trade Enforcement Priorities Act, which will require the U.S. Trade Representative’s office to begin negotiations to rebalance trade with nations that the U.S. has a trade deficit with for three consecutive years.

Each of the candidates acknowledged the importance of reaching across the aisle and rising above bi-partisan divisions to create a sounder trade policy and a better climate for American producers.

“We cannot achieve full employment and sound growth for our manufacturers, farmers, and workers without reforming and rebalancing trade.” noted Frengel.

The Coalition for a Prosperous America is a nonprofit organization representing the interests of 2.7 million households through our agricultural, manufacturing and labor members.


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