News / USA

    US Campaign Attack Ads Take Aim at China

    A political ad accusing U.S. Senate candidate Pat Toomey of helping send American jobs to China.
    A political ad accusing U.S. Senate candidate Pat Toomey of helping send American jobs to China.

    Multimedia

    Laurel Bowman

    The balance of power in both Houses of the U.S. Congress is at stake in the 2010 midterm elections.  And President Barack Obama's policy agenda lies in wait.  Meantime, a perceived villian has emerged in many political races - China.

    In political ads across the nation, Democrats and Republicans alike are bashing their opponents for allegedly helping China, criticizing them for supporting free trade with that country and pushing tax cuts for companies doing business there.

    "Job Killer Pat Toomey.  Maybe he ought to run for Senate in China."

    The heat is on as November 2 Congressional elections fast approach.  Polls show that voters' most pressing concerns this year are not wars abroad, but a poor economy and lack of jobs at home.

    Evan Tracey tracks political advertising for the non-partisan Campaign Media Analysis Group. "China is a good villain because they are perceived as an economy on the come (moving up).  They are perceived in some ways as a threat to United States dominance in economics. It is the notion that China is coming for your job.  Or that China is taking your tax money.  That is really the idea here that candidates are putting forth in these ads," he said.

    "Gibbs wants more free trade with China to improve their standard of living.  But what about Ohio?"

    Ohio Democrat Zack Space says that his opponent's general support of free trade is sending jobs to China.

    "91,000 jobs.  As they say in China, 'Xie Xie (Thanks) Mr. Gibbs!'"

    A range of scholars and economists agree that the claims in many of these ads are exaggerated, at best.  Dan Griswold of the CATO Institute research group says globalization is here to stay and that Americans, including politicians, should embrace that.

    "We are today a middle class service economy. Eighty percent of Americans work in the service sector and that is the natural trend of development of every industrialized rich country. We need to adjust our policies to that pleasant reality," he said.

    Griswold and others say that means being honest with American voters and workers.  They insist low-end manufacturing jobs outsourced to China aren't likely coming back. "I think a politician who tries to blame China for America's economic problems is not being honest with the constituents that he or she wants to represent," he said.

    But the facts, says Tracey and other analysts, are in the very fine print. "In politics, context is the job of the other campaign.  In other words, your campaign's goal is to tell your version of the facts so did jobs get shipped to China because of tax breaks?  Yes.  Do stimulus dollars end up in Chinese companies' hands?  Absolutely," he said.

    In short, it's up to the American voter to find out what's true and what's truly exaggerated.  And in the weeks ahead, voters have their work cut out for them.  There are hundreds of ads now airing that portray China as the bad guy.

    You May Like

    Mother of IS Supporter: Son Was Peaceful, 'Role Model'

    Somali-American Abdirizak Mohamed Warsame pleaded guilty Thursday to charges of conspiring to provide material support to Islamic State militants

    Factions Shift as Civilians Die in Syrian War

    Scenario likely only to further confuse military situation on ground and potentially worsen humanitarian crisis that already has grown to epic proportions

    Presidential Hopefuls Woo Minorities, Evangelicals

    Four GOP candidates to speak at forum at Bob Jones University in Greenville, South Carolina

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Two-thirds of World Faces Water Shortagei
    X
    February 12, 2016 7:31 PM
    Four billion people — or two out of every three on the planet — do not have enough water to meet their basic needs. That is far greater than previously thought, according to a new study that presents a more accurate picture of the problem. As VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports, the findings will help policymakers and the public craft solutions to address the threat.
    Video

    Video Two-thirds of World Faces Water Shortage

    Four billion people — or two out of every three on the planet — do not have enough water to meet their basic needs. That is far greater than previously thought, according to a new study that presents a more accurate picture of the problem. As VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports, the findings will help policymakers and the public craft solutions to address the threat.
    Video

    Video Gateway to Mecca: Historical Old Jeddah

    Local leader Sami Nawar's family has been in the Old City of Jeddah for hundreds of years and takes us on a tour of this ancient route to Mecca, also believed to be the final resting place of Adam's wife, Eve.
    Video

    Video New Technology Aims to Bring Election Transparency to Uganda

    A team of recent graduates from Uganda’s Makerere University has created a mobile application designed to help monitor elections and expose possible rigging. The developers say the app, called E-Poll, will make Uganda's democratic process fairer. From Kampala, VOA's Serginho Roosblad reports.
    Video

    Video As Refugees Perish, Greek Graveyards Fill

    Aid workers on the Greek island of Lesbos say they are struggling to bury the increasing number of bodies of refugees that have been recovered or washed up ashore in recent months.  The graveyards are all full, they say, yet as tens of thousands of people clamor to get out of Syria, it is clear refugees will still be coming in record numbers. For VOA, Hamada Elrasam reports from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video Russia Bristles at NATO Expansion in E. Europe

    Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is meeting Friday with the head of NATO after the Western military alliance and the United States announced plans for the biggest military build-up in Europe since the Cold War. Russia has called NATO's moves a threat to stability in Europe. But NATO says the troop rotations and equipment are aimed at reassuring allies concerned about Russia as VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video To Fight Zika, Scientists Target Mosquitoes

    Mosquitoes strike again. The Zika virus outbreak is just the latest headline-grabbing epidemic carried by these biting pests, but researchers are fighting back with new ways to control them. VOA's Steve Baragona takes a look.
    Video

    Video Mosul Refugees Talk About Life Under IS

    A top U.S. intelligence official told Congress this week that a planned Iraqi-led operation to re-take the city of Mosul from Islamic State militants is unlikely to take place this year. IS took over the city in June 2014, and for the past year and a half, Mosul residents have been held captive under its rule. VOA's Zana Omar talked to some families who managed to escape. Bronwyn Benito narrates his report.
    Video

    Video Scientists Make Progress Toward Better Diabetes Treatment, Cure

    Scientists at two of the top U.S. universities say they have made significant advances in their quest to find a more efficient treatment for diabetes and eventually a cure. According to the International Diabetes Federation, the disease affects more than 370 million people worldwide. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video NATO to Target Migrant Smugglers

    NATO has announced plans to send warships to the Aegean Sea to target migrant smugglers in the alliance's most direct intervention so far since a wave of people began trying to reach European shores.
    Video

    Video Russia's Catholics, Orthodox Hopeful on Historic Pope-Patriarch Meeting

    Russia's Catholic minority has welcomed an historic first meeting Friday in Cuba between the Pope and the Patriarch of Russia's dominant Orthodox Church. The Orthodox Church split with Rome in 1054 and analysts say politics, both church and state, have been driving the relationship in the centuries since. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video Used Books Get a New Life on the Streets of Lagos

    Used booksellers are importing books from abroad and selling them on the streets of Africa's largest city. What‘s popular with readers may surprise you. Chris Stein reports from Lagos.
    Video

    Video After NH Primaries All Eyes on South Carolina

    After Tuesday's primary in New Hampshire, US presidential candidates swiftly turned to the next election coming up in South Carolina. The so-called “first-in-the-South” poll may help further narrow down the field of candidates. Zlatica Hoke reports.
    Video

    Video Smartphone Helps Grow Vegetables

    One day, you may be using your smartphone to grow your vegetables. A Taipei-based company has developed a farm cube — a small, enclosed ecosystem designed to grow plants indoors. The environment inside is automatically adjusted by the cube, but it can also be controlled through an app. VOA's Deborah Block has more on the gardening system.
    Video

    Video Exhibit Turns da Vinci’s Drawings Into Real Objects

    In addition to being a successful artist, Renaissance genius Leonardo da Vinci designed many practical machines, some of which are still in use today, although in different forms. But a number of his projects were never realized — until today. VOA’s George Putic reports.