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Wednesday, three Oregon U.S. Representatives voted to give hundreds of millions of dollars in tax subsidies to a Canadian rail-car manufacturer. The Canadian company, National Steel Car, is one of the top foreign competitors to Greenbrier, an important Oregon manufacturer with operations in Portland and Lake Oswego.
Voting for the foreign railcar subsidy were Reps. Earl Blumenauer, Darlene Hooley, and David Wu.
Voting against the subsidy were Reps. Peter DeFazio and Greg Walden.
According to National Journal’s CongressDaily, the bill would allow foreign competitor National Steel Car's “to receive up to $300 million in tax-exempt bond financing.” The move places U.S. manufacturers like Oregon’s Greenbrier “at a disadvantage in a cutthroat market.”
Rep Bluemenaur, who voted for the bill, bizarrely complained to the media about the provision, telling CongressDaily, "And now we are going to have the federal government provide foreign subsidies for a company to hurt American industry.”
FreedomWorks President Matt Kibbe commented:
“Clearly, with this vote, Reps. Bluemenaur, Hooley, and Wu are more interested in bailing out foreign bondholders, hedge funds, and Canadian railcar makers. This same bill increases the national debt ceiling to a staggering $10.6 trillion.”
“It also begs the question as to whether Reps. Bluemenaur, Hooley, and Wu, or their staff even read the bill before they voted. Who exactly are they representing with this vote?”
“At a time when every job matters, Rep. Bluemenaur, Hooley, and Wu just voted to hamstring Oregon’s manufacturers and add $800 billion to the national debt limit.”
“On the other hand, FreedomWorks would like to salute Rep. Peter DeFazio and Greg Walden and for standing up for Oregon and for voting against the crony capitalist, big spending housing bill.”