Mexico Joe: Vulnerable Democrat Caught In Outsourcing Hypocrisy Calls Revelation a ‘Distraction’

Posted: Jul 18, 2017 1:35 PM

Sen. Joe Donnelly (D-IN) was positioning himself to be the member of Congress for the workingman, possibly a bellwether for a populist Democrat in a state that went overwhelmingly for Trump in 2016. He railed against outsourcing. He even sponsored a bill called the End Outsourcing Act in January. Last year, when Carrier announced more jobs would be shipped to Mexico, he slammed the company’s moves as “unpatriotic” and “Un-American.” Then, the Associated Press came a knocking, combing over his financial disclosure statements, where the senator made tens of thousands of dollars from investments in the family arts and crafts business. That business, which Donnelly also formerly served as a corporate officer, has a plant in Mexico [emphasis mine]:

An Indiana senator railed against Carrier Corp. for moving manufacturing jobs to Mexico last year, even as he profited from a family business that relies on Mexican labor to produce dye for ink pads, according to records reviewed by The Associated Press.

Joe Donnelly, considered one of the nation’s most vulnerable Democratic senators up for re-election next year, has long blasted free-trade policies for killing American jobs. He accused Carrier, an air conditioner and furnace maker, of exploiting $3-an-hour workers when it announced plans to wind down operations in Indiana and move to Mexico.

However, an arts and crafts business Donnelly’s family has owned for generations is capitalizing on some of the very trade policies — and low-paid foreign labor — the senator has denounced.


Although Donnelly’s brother runs the company, the senator previously served as a corporate officer and its general counsel before he was first elected to Congress in 2006. In a financial disclosure form he filed in May, Donnelly reported owning as much as $50,000 in company stock and earning between $15,001 and $50,000 in dividends on it in 2016 alone.

Donnelly has been caught red-handed in hypocrisy, but he views the whole matter as a “distraction.” He told local news outlets that he plans to sell the stock. Also, the arts and crafts company—Stewart Superior—appears to have removed any mentions of its plant in Mexico after the AP story was published (via Washington Free Beacon):

The site's current "about us" page, which as recently as last Friday concluded by stating that "a recently opened manufacturing plant in Guadalajara, Mexico now brings economical, cost competitive manufacturing and product development to our valued customers."

That sentence has now been removed, as can be seen in screenshots that were taken by the Washington Free Beacon.

The address of the Mexican "manufacturing plant" has also been removed from the "locations" page where it could previously be found.

Stewart Superior did not respond to questions regarding the change and whether it means the company has halted its Mexican manufacturing.

The Republican National Committee wasted no time cutting ads against the vulnerable Democrats, naming him “Mexico Joe,” which is very fitting.