Tags: David Perdue | Georgia | senate race | midterms | outsourcing

Ga. Democrats Latch On to Perdue's Outsourcing Comments

By    |   Thursday, 09 Oct 2014 08:09 AM

Georgia Republican Senate candidate David Perdue's admission that he is "proud" that he spent most of his career outsourcing the work of several businesses to Asian companies is giving Democrats new hope in a state where he had led polls since winning his July runoff election.

"The race has tightened," Republican strategist Joel McElhannon told The Hill.  "Dave has taken a few hits here over the last week or two from a very well-coordinated, aggressive campaign."

According to polls released this week, the businessman leads Democratic challenger Michelle Nunn by just one point in a Survey USA poll announced on Wednesday, and by two points in a Democratic Public Policy Polling survey published on Tuesday.

Overall, according to RealClearPolitics, Perdue still maintains a 3.2 point lead.

But that margin could narrow even more, with millions of dollars in advertising coming out that slam Perdue for his outsourcing comments, reports The Hill.

Perdue's ratings are dropping after reports that he had revealed in a legal deposition in 2005 that he spent "most of his career" outsourcing businesses.

The deposition was ordered over a dispute about money he had made at a North Carolina textile company, Pillowtex, which shut its doors and laid off thousands of workers after Purdue left as its CEO in 2003.

He also told attorneys during the deposition that he had helped companies increase production in Asia, and said he moved production at Pillowtex overseas to try to save it, but the company closed before that happened.

He added fuel to the fire on Monday, when he told a local reporter that he not only would defend his career on outsourcing, but he's "proud of it," The Hill reports.

"This is a part of American business, part of any business," Perdue said. "Outsourcing is the procurement of products and services to help your business run. People do that all day."

He then went on to blame government policies, not outsourcing, for killing Americans' jobs.

Democratic strategist Tharon Johnson told The Hill that Perdue's comments were the "first major mistake" he has made during this campaign, as "Georgians will not support anyone who outsources jobs away from hard-working Americans."

Georgia has the highest state-level unemployment in the United States, at 8.1 percent, so the attacks on outsourcing will likely be especially fierce.

Already, Nunn has been appearing on television ads that feature laid-off Pillowtex workers, and a new ad this week stresses his comments in the legal deposition.

Meanwhile, Perdue responded with advertising tying Nunn to President Barack Obama and calling her ads "desperate, untrue attacks."

Democrats are not the only ones who have used Perdue's business career as ammunition against him. Many of his GOP primary opponents also attacked him for serving on boards of companies profiting from stimulus funding and for outsourcing jobs.

His supporters say that the newest wave of attacks won't affect his lead.

"David has maintained a consistent lead in the polls despite an onslaught by liberal groups spending millions of dollars to help Michelle Nunn's campaign run false and misleading attacks against him on the airwaves,” Perdue spokeswoman Megan Whittemore told The Hill.

Georgia's race has largely run under the radar, and campaign committees from both sides have not spent much money on the race. That may change after November, if Nunn and Perdue both fall short of 50 percent of the vote. Libertarian Amanda Swafford is polling in single digits, and a runoff could come in January if she pulls votes away from the two major candidates, strategists believe.

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Georgia Republican Senate candidate David Perdue's admission that he is proud that he spent most of his career outsourcing the work of several businesses to Asian companies is giving Democrats new hope.
David Perdue, Georgia, senate race, midterms, outsourcing
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2014-09-09
Thursday, 09 Oct 2014 08:09 AM
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