Of course, now we find out that our governor has previously praised the company. For that story, we go to the Akron Bacon Fishwrapper:
Put another way, the governor has some explaining to do. In other settings, he has applauded Invacare. The $1.7 billion company makes and distributes home and long-term care medical products, doing business in 80 countries, employing 1,300 in Northeast Ohio and 6,200 worldwide. More, the company has been part of an effort promoting Ohio as a good place to locate and operate a business. No surprise, then, that Strickland has pointed to Invacare as a sign of the state making economic progress.
The governor's campaign stressed that the ad targeted Kasich, and not the company. The contention doesn't hold up. If Kasich ''signed off'' on outsourcing as a director, he did so at the urging of the company's executive team. Invacare felt wounded enough to issue a statement over the weekend defending its employment record.
When the company recently celebrated its 30th anniversary, local pols applauded loudly for one of the largest employers in Lorain County. U.S. Rep. Betty Sutton joined the cheers. The Copley Township Democrat hardly qualifies as soft on outsourcing or as friendly to recent trade agreements.
It's not hard to follow the thinking of the Strickland camp: Kasich sits on the board. The company outsources. Let's hammer 'em — all the while figuring most wouldn't catch up to the whole truth.This is just pathetic politicking at its worst...and that is all Ohio has gotten from this governor from Day One.
It is time for a New Day and a New Way.
UPDATE 1: The Columbus Dispatch picked up the story as well. We actually get Invacare's side of the story on why they outsourced those jobs and if you were listening to the TIB All-Stars Show over the weekend, you will know this already:
Invacare issued a statement defending the moves it made in 2006 and criticizing Strickland for focusing on an Ohio employer that added jobs during the recession.Ted Strickland is a total hack and this ad proves it.
"The company is very disappointed that its home-state governor would attack it in a campaign commercial," Invacare said.
Company spokeswoman Lara Mahoney said the 2006 restructuring, which moved the production of walkers and manual wheelchairs, eliminating about 200 jobs, was made in response to competition from low-price producers.
Custom wheelchair production and other work remained in Elyria, and Mahoney said the restructuring "strengthened our company" and allowed it to hire back workers in a difficult economy.
Oh, and this bit from Team Strickland deserves a moment of pause:
But Smith defended the ad, saying Kasich has supported policies during his tenure in Congress and afterward that led to outsourcing jobs, and that the ad is criticizing outsourcing.Invacare actually hired more workers during StrickTaft's recession. Do you think maybe it was because Kasich and Invacare's board did what they needed to do in order to stay in business and hire more people? Maybe John Kasich can do that for Ohio when he is governor. Thanks, Team Ted, for making this fact known to us...
"This is not an ad about Invacare," Smith said. "It's an ad about Kasich's priorities and judgment. In Congress and on the board of Invacare, he supported outsourcing Ohio jobs. Now, he is asking Ohio voters to elect him to create jobs here in Ohio. If past is prologue, it's clear that he cannot be trusted to do that."
UPDATE 2: The Dayton Daily Democrat gets in to the act too.