Fall brings slipping temps, change of color and mid-term elections to the United States, which also means it’s time to bring out the spectre of China to wrangle votes. The anti-China rhetoric is really heating up as Americans head to the polls in less than one month’s time. According to a piece in the New York Times, in roughly the past week, 29 candidates have jumped on the anti-China train… much of it focusing around, wait for it, you guessed it – JOBS!
While the ads mean to take advantage of the growing anti-China sentiment in the US as a result of continued high unemployment and cries of unfair trade practices (aka currency manipulation), one has to wonder how this will affect US-China relations going forward. Running an ad and ending it with thanking the candidate in Chinese for sending jobs to China isn’t exactly playing nice.
Former president of the US-China Business Council, Robert A. Kapp, had this to say:
“To bring one country into the crosshairs in so many districts, at such a late stage of the campaign, represents something new and a calculated gamble. I find it deplorable. I find it demeaning.”
Interestingly enough, that same Council has a nice state-by-state graphic detailing US exports from 2000-2009, just in case you wanted to play devil’s advocate with one of these 29 politicians.
Clouding the issue further is a lack of consensus on what constitutes “outsourcing. Of course that hasn’t stopped Democrats or Republicans from citing different studies to support their claims. At least one candidate we know (hint, hint – Christine O’Donnell) jumped the gun in 2006 with claims she made about China based on her insider “knowledge.”
And who would have thought that we would still be talking about World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) weeks after they rocked Shanghai to a sold-out audience. It seems that the former CEO is running for office in the state of Connecticut and being questioned about WWE action figures with the Made In China stamp on them. Her “stone cold” reply was that it wasn’t her decision but that of the toy manufacturer.
More links of ads for your viewing pleasure:
Ad for Joe Sestak against Pat Toomey, both running for Senate in Pennsylvania
An ad for Ryan Frazier against Ed Perlmutter, both running for Congress in Colorado
Ad for Spike Maynard against Nick Rahall, both running for Congress in West Virginia
Ad for Harry Reid against Sharron Angle, both running for Senate in Nevada