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Shelby & Bonner: ‘Obama had nothing to do with Airbus’ coming to Alabama

Senator Richard Shelby and Congressman Jo Bonner took exception to President Obama touting Airbus’s Mobile manufacturing facility during his economic speech today, as if his policies had any positive impact on the company’s decision to locate in Alabama.

“Right now, more of Honda’s cars are made in America than anywhere else. Airbus will build new planes in Alabama. Companies like Ford are replacing outsourcing with insourcing and bringing more jobs home. We sell more products made in America to the rest of the world than ever before,” Obama said during his speech at Knox College in Illinois.

The president also covered a long list of economic priorities, including the continued implementation of ObamaCare and more government spending on so-called infrastructure projects.

Bonner immediately took to Twitter to share his reaction:

Shelby wasted no time in sharing his opinion with CNN host Brooke Baldwin.

“This administration has always been about more taxes and more regulations,” Shelby said. “That’s not what creates jobs in this country. That’s not what brings foreign direct investment. My state of Alabama has benefited from foreign direct investment. Look at Airbus. The President had nothing to do with that. Not to my knowledge. We’ve got a good workforce. We’ve got a good engineering school in Mobile, Alabama. We have the right-to-work laws. What we need is structural reform, not more rhetoric.”

Shelby earlier this year introduced structural tax reform via the Simplified, Manageable And Responsible Tax (SMART) Act, which would throw out the current tax code and replace it with a 17% flat tax. The only exemptions would be personal exemptions of $14,070 for a single person, $17,970 for a head of household, $28,140 for a married couple filing jointly, and $6,070 for each dependent.

“With the SMART Act in place, taxpayers would file a return the size of a postcard,” a Shelby spokesperson said at the time.

“I have advocated structural tax reform in this country for a long time,” Shelby said today on CNN. “And the President, I would think he would start listening. But he’s not. He’s always saying, ‘Well, let’s tax the people who do well.’ What we need is structural tax reform to create conditions for this country where people will invest…”

Yellowhammer pointed out shortly after Airbus announced their Mobile facility that Alabama’s status as a right-to-work state played a major role in Airbus’s decision to locate in the state. The New York times concurred. “By assembling the planes with nonunion American workers… Airbus also stands to reduce production costs,” the Times said.

Alabama leaders have been some of the most vocal advocates for lower taxes, less pointless government regulation and strong right-to-work laws — all policies that the president adamantly opposes. So what brought Airbus to Alabama? You can decide for yourself.


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