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article imageRomney and Paul focus on Obama's 'war on jobs' before GOP debate

By Michael Krebs     Sep 12, 2011 in Politics
Ahead of the CNN Tea Party debate on Monday night and under the backdrop of persistent national unemployment, Republican presidential candidates Mitt Romney and Ron Paul focused on the White House's assault on right to work laws.
The CNN / Tea Party Republican presidential debate on Monday night has been projected by CNN to be an event that "marks the battle lines" for the future of Social Security. However, while entitlement reform is certainly a pillar of the Republican and Tea Party focus on curbing spending, the GOP debate will also focus on the nation's anemic job market.
One of the key rallying issues among Republicans concerned with a healthy free market economy has been the National Labor Relations Board's insistence on blocking Boeing from moving ahead with a plant in South Carolina. The NLRB, with the support of the Obama administration, has moved to sue Boeing for building the $750 million plant in a "right to work" state and has alleged that Boeing is trying to undermine its unionized labor force that is concentrated in Washington state. But the South Carolina plant represents a new operation, not a replacement of existing manufacturing projects.
The issue has attracted the attention of former Massachusetts governor and Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, who is planning to visit the South Carolina facility ahead of the Monday night debate, according to the Associated Press.
Additionally, Congressman Ron Paul (R-TX), a Libertarian-minded Republican presidential candidate, issued a statement on the matter, equating President Obama's support for the NLRB's position as a "war on jobs."
"With jobs so hard to come by for many Americans, you would think a private company deciding to create more than 1,000 jobs would be cheered by Republicans and Democrats alike," Dr. Paul wrote on his campaign web site. "But President Obama’s National Labor Relations Board is doing everything it can to stop Boeing from opening a new plant in North Charleston."
The national unemployment rate has remained stubbornly above 9 percent for an uncomfortably long time, and the issue has come to define the Obama White House. Republican strategists are focusing their messages on the unemployment challenge and are offering varying solutions on the way forward.
"The labor board’s attempt to force Boeing to stay in a non-right-to-work state where the union bosses can force workers to pay up or be fired is political payback for their undying support during the last presidential campaign," Paul wrote. "If the Obama administration succeeds, it could result in the virtual destruction of right-to-work laws all across the country: No longer could private companies decide for themselves where to move or open new facilities; the government would now take on that responsibility and make decisions based solely on what benefits the big-labor elite. Right-to-work states would be left out in the cold."
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