The Congressional Steel Caucus
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The steel industry has been central to Northwest Indiana's way of life since the first mills arrived on the Lake Michigan shoreline over 100 years ago. Today, the American manufacturing industry faces threats on several fronts. At home, loopholes in Buy America protections have prevented the use of American steel on infrastructure projects. Abroad, illegally-subsidized imports from foreign nations that devalue their currencies continue to flood the market. During these difficult times, Pete believes that we must fight for every single American job.
As Vice Chairman of the Congressional Steel Caucus, Pete has lobbied the Administration and testified before the International Trade Commission numerous times to fight for a level playing field for our workers. He has also worked to successfully enact Buy America provisions, and he opposed cap and trade legislation because he believed it would have led to job loss in the vulnerable steel and manufacturing sectors.
Pete is fighting every single day to ensure the passage of the following legislation:
- The Fighting for American Jobs Act would protect American jobs by denying federal assistance to companies that lay off American workers while retaining jobs overseas.
- The American Steel First Act would ensure that American-made iron and steel power the nation's economic recovery, protecting and creating American jobs.
Click here for more information on the Fighting for American Jobs Act and the American Steel First Act.
On December 10, 2012, Pete joined Chairman Murphy in urging Secretary Panetta to remember the crucial relationship between American steel producers and the U.S. Navy and guarantee American steel producers certainty as the Navy developed its future shipbuilding plans. The letter highlighted the fact that the production of one aircraft carrier alone generates over $3 billion in economic activity. Read the letter here.
Hearings, International Trade Commission
Pete frequently appears before the International Trade Commission, an administrative body charged with enforcing the United States' trade laws, to fight for the American steel industry and American workers. In the 113th Congress, Pete spoke out to:
Protect American Steel Jobs. On January 9, 2013, Pete argued that the expiration of trade protections against corrosion-resistant flat products imported from South Korea and Germany would lead to a flood of cheap imports in the American market, placing American steel jobs in jeopardy.
Demand a Level Playing Field. On March 21, 2013, Pete appeared before a meeting of the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade to urge his colleagues to clamp down on the trade abuses of nations that "do not adhere to the labor, environmental, and fair trade standards that we exhibit here in our country."
Call for the Renewal of a Vibrant Manufacturing Sector. Pete knows that manufacturing drives innovation. As we invest in math and science training to develop a highly-skilled workforce, Pete frequently reminds his colleagues that we must maintain a strong manufacturing base for our young people who become engineers, scientists, and researchers to find job opportunities. Since 1990, the American steel industry has reduced its use of electricity by 30 percent, and we should ensure that this highly-efficient industry continues to drive our sustained economic growth.