Skip to main content

tv   Democracy Now  WHUT  September 20, 2012 6:00pm-7:00pm EDT

6:00 pm
09/20/12 09/20/12 [captioning made possible by democracy now!] >> from pacifica, this is "democracy now!" we are on the road in freeport, illinois. >> we are trying to get mitt romney to come to freeport to help us save our jobs. we have tried a lot of other things, and now we're going to camp out here outside sensata technologies until we get some results. >> we are broadcasting from just outside a factory owned by bain capital, the private equity
6:01 pm
firm founded by republican presidential nominee mitt romney. workers have set up an encampment they have called bainport to protest the company's plan to close the factory and make it to china. the workers have been trying to get romney to save their jobs. >> romney supporters in the audience were calling as communists because we're trying to save our jobs from going to communist china. >> first, mother jones reporter david corn who obtained the secret mitt romney tapes. >> david corn and mitt romney
6:02 pm
and the showdown, the inside story and "showdown: the indside story of how obama fought back against boehner, cantor, and the tea party." all of that and more coming up. this is "democracy now!,", the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. we are broadcasting from freeport, illinois. the justice department's inspector general has issued a long anticipated report faulting top federal officials over the controversial gun sting operation known as fast and furious while exonerating attorney general eric holder. the operation saw u.s. agents allowing the sale of thousands of guns to middlemen for mexican drug cartels in an attempt to gain access to senior level figures within mexico's criminal organization. the nearly 500-page report, issued wednesday, accuses federal prosecutors and agents from the bureau of all, tobacco and firearms of allowing the botched sting to continue
6:03 pm
through a "series of misguided strategies, tactics, errors in judgment, and management failures." holder has faced a number of republican attacks over the program, culminating in a contempt vote by the house earlier this year. while the report exonerates eric holder, it condemns assistant attorney general brewer and an aide who promptly resigned on wednesday. more than a dozen officials are singled out in the report for possible discipline. iraq is denying reports it allowed iran to fly shipments of weapons and military personnel to in a the regime of syrian president bashar al-assad over iraq airspace. according to reuters, the transfers have been authorized under a deal between top iraqi and iranian officials. on wednesday, senator john kerry of massachusetts warned iraq the alleged flights could jeopardize u.s. aid. at the united nations,
6:04 pm
secretary-general ban ki-moon said syria would top the agenda at the general assembly in new york next week. >> every morning when i watch tv and images, whenever i see many people, particularly young children, who are affected by this, i could not start my day with a peace of mind. it really affects me deeply. as you know, and unfortunately, the government and opposition forces seem to be determined to see the end by military means. i think military means [indiscernible] it should be resolved through political dialogue. >> italy's top court has upheld the sentences of 23 cia operatives convicted of
6:05 pm
kidnapping a muslim cleric under the u.s. program of extraordinary rendition. the cleric, abu omar, was seized from the streets of milan in 2003 and taken to the u.s. bases in italy and germany before being sent to egypt, where he was tortured during a four-year imprisonment. the americans were all convicted in absentia to the u.s. refused to hand them over. the italian government will be obliged to make a format request -- a formal request for the extradition, but it's all but assured the obama administration will continue its rejection. the head of the national counter-terrorism center appeared before congress to update lawmakers on the investigation into last week's deadly attack on the u.s. consulate in benghazi. matthew olsen said although the perpetrators remain unknown, it is clear the assault was a premeditated terrorist attack. >> sir leon that particular question i would say, yes, they were killed in the course of a
6:06 pm
terrorist attack on our embassy. a number of different elements appear to have been involved in the attack, including individuals connected to militant groups that are prevalent in eastern libya, particularly in the because the area. ross also looking at indications that individuals may have connections to al qaeda or affiliates of al qaeda, in particular. >> france has ordered the closure of embassies and other official sites in 20 countries after a french magazine published offensive caricatures of the prophet muhammed. the latest issue of the satirical weekly featured a depiction of muhammad in pornographic poses. abortion clinics in virginia are facing a major setback after the state's board of health reversed an earlier decision that exempted them from stringent building codes. the regulations in question are
6:07 pm
akin to those imposed on hospitals, governing everything from the size of the janitors' closets to do with of hallways. some clinics say the rules may force their closure due to the cost of remodeling. the board's reversal follows what critics call bullying by the state's attorney general who rejected the decision in june, exempting existing clinics from the rules and said the board had overstepped its authority. ken cuccinelli had told the board members they could not exempt clinics and warned them they'd be personally liable for legal fees if they were sued after rejecting his advice. the virginia law is part of a nationwide wave of so-called targeted regulation of abortion provider or trap laws aimed at ending access to abortion rid the lead to some of global warming, sea ice in the arctic has melted to a small service area since record-keeping began. nearlyar's minimum is
6:08 pm
50% less than the average from 1979-2000. the sea ice reached its apparent low point for the year on sunday when it covered just 24% of the service of the arctic ocean. the previous record low was from 2007, 29%. scientists have long viewed arctic sea ice as a key indicator of global warming. on wednesday, the environmental group greenpeace posted a polar emergency event in new york city. the leader, carolin and bill mcn both addressed the melting of arctic sea ice. >> we knew something was happening with the climate change, but i think more so now it is critical that we take it to heart. that is happening. people rely on that arctic ocean. if the ice melts, it is a scary
6:09 pm
thought. because it is who we are. it is where the animals migrate. and my elders -- the committee elders rely on the vitamins and traditional food that the oceans supply. >> there is no place on earth are we see the essential irony of our moment playing out more perfectly than in the arctic. we have melted much of the sea ice in the arctic. our response to that has been not alarm, not panic, not a sense of emergency, our basic response as a civilization has been -- well, let's go up there and draw for oil. >> she just won the goldman prize for her environmental activism. those are some of the headlines. this is "democracy now!,", the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. we are on the road in freeport,
6:10 pm
illinois. we are broadcasting just outside a factory, the sensata factor, owned by bain capital, the private equity firm founded by republican presidential nominee mitt romney. the factory is scheduled to be closed at the end of november and move to china. later in the broadcast, we will speak with the workers here who will soon lose their jobs. the first, we turn to the campaign trail. on wednesday, during an interview with the spanish- language television station univision, mitt romney said his presidential campaign was about helping all americans. >> my campaign is about the 100% of american its. i am concerned about them, concerned about the fact that over the past four years life has become harder for americans. were people have fallen into poverty. we'll just learn more people had to go on to food stamps for the president took office, 32
6:11 pm
million people were on food stamps and now 47 million people are on the stamps. i know i'm not one to get one ever% of the vote and my campaign will focus on as we think we can bring it to support me, but this is a campaign about helping people who need help. >> mitt romney's statement came two days after mother jones magazine released the now notorious video of romney telling a crowd of wealthy donors and florida that doesn't worry about the 47% of americans who are "dependent" on government and see themselves as "victims." >> who feel they are entitled to food, housing, you name it. they will vote for this president no matter what.
6:12 pm
the president starts off with a huge number. these are people who pay no income tax. 47% of americans pay no income tax. he will be talking about tax cuts to the rich. my job is done to worry about [indiscernible] comments have's divided republicans with some saying he should stand by his statements, and others suggesting he should renounce them. for more we're joined by david korn, the washington bureau chief for mother jones magazine and the man largely responsible for bringing attention to the secret romney video. he is also the author of, "showdown: the indside story of how obama fought back against boehner, cantor, and the tea party." the new paperback edition is out
6:13 pm
this week. welcome back to "democracy now!" talk about how you got this videotape and the significance of what is on it. it certainly has created a firestorm. >> it seems to have done so. thank you for having me and mentioning the book. there have been a lot of good stories written in the last day or two on how we got this story of mother jones. the short version, i had that a lot of reporting on bain and mitt romney's investments including in companies outsourcing jobs to china and elsewhere, which is what it does cover program to be talking to you this morning given where you are. in the course of doing that, i hooked up with a freelance researcher named james carter. he is the grandson of jimmy carter, though at the time, i did not know that. he pointed me toward some sec
6:14 pm
documents that are relevant to my work. as we were discussing things, we discussed this little clip of a video that appeared mysteriously on the internet posted anonymously that should mitt romney at a fundraiser discussing a trip he had made to an overseas factory in china when he was considering investing in the company over there. it seemed related to the work i had been doing. james said, maybe we should find the person who put up this video and see if he has anything else about china or any other aspects of bain and mitt romney's investments. i said, please, james, go ahead. it did not take long to make contact with the anonymous person. he asked that person if they would talk to me about what was on the tape. james never got the tape, but put me in touch with the source. this was mid august, late august. over the course of a week or two, i became confident in the
6:15 pm
source. the source became confident in me. i eventually convinced the source to share the entire video with me and we had conversations about what to release and how to release it in a way to protect the source of anonymity. that all took a couple of weeks. the timing -- basically, it was as fast as we could authenticate the tape and be assured what we had was real was as fast that we and mother jones put it out. a lot of people watching your show and listening, and know what has happened since. >> speaking on the cavuto's fox news show on tuesday, mitt romney tried to clarify what he meant by saying the 47% of americans pay no income tax. >> first of all, you are right, there are a number of retirees, members of military and so forth who are not paying taxes, and that is as it should be. i do believe we should have enough jobs and enough take home
6:16 pm
pay that people have the privilege of higher incomes that allow them to be paying taxes. i think people would like to be paying taxes. if you're doing well enough financially, the good news is you can pay tax. you see in this country, so many people have fallen into poverty that they're not paying taxes. they have to rely on government. the right course is not just have government handing out, the government helping people to get back to good jobs. >> mitt romney went on to claim that seniors who don't pay income taxes still support him because of his position on medicare. >> we go after every group we can to get votes, and seniors are people i am getting in large numbers. i have got great support from seniors because they are unhappy with the fact president obama's obamacare cuts medicare by $716 billion. >> david corn, if you could continue talking about his original comments and how he is tried to clarify.
6:17 pm
>> he got very close in that comment i think the same, if you're doing really well financially, you'll have to pay 30% in income taxes. this is classic bait and switch. he is trying to make lemonade out of turds, to be crude about it. one of the things i take pleasure in in this story, you do not have to take my word or anyone else's word. you can watch the tape again and again and see what mitt romney is saying. in those remarks, i think you can only call it contempt or disdain for 47% of the public. he does not say that they do not making enough to pay taxes. he calls them moochers, parasites, people who do not take personal responsibility for their own lives. he also talks about different subsets. 47% of people who voted for
6:18 pm
obama, once the to get into this paris it victim class but he says 47% some people do not pay taxes. it is a different subset, but he is living and to gather. people who get medicare, medicaid, welfare assistance from the veterans administration, perhaps even farm subsidies and corporate welfare -- he loves them altogether. he is basically creating this c aste for the election in which politics is divided between those of us in this room, strivers, people who have made what we made purely on their own initiative, and the rest of america who are moochers who want to basically be parasites living off of us. there is really no other way to see that tape. it shows his disdain for all or for half of america when he claims to want to be president for all of america. yet he is coming out of this, he
6:19 pm
has to say something. he can say, yes, that is what i meant. he is saying, i was concerned about people not making enough money. it is pretty clear, he would not still be explaining three days out if the tape did not really show the real romney. >> david, he would not have held a news converts the not you release this video, late at night, which was quite remarkable, demanding the release the whole thing could which you did come on the mother jones website. do you think it mitigated -- >> i am sorry to interrupt. people can go to motherjones stock, and watch the clips we put up about this, what he said about the middle east and things involving politics, or they can sit through the entire video we put up, which is about 70 minutes long and see the whole thing. how many times has mitt romney held a press conference on this campaign? that monday night he realized it
6:20 pm
was an issue. i was on a show last night, as joe by mi6, "bless him." larry was saying, this will concentrate him and force him to talk about how america has turned into an entitlement society. fine, you do that while trying to campaign and whenever the votes of people on medicare in ohio and florida after these dismissive remarks. if mitt romney took lares advice, he would be worse off in the polls as he is this morning. the immediate calls after this remark are showing americans are turning away from mitt romney. i am not making predictions about what will happen on election day. there's still a long time ago, essentially, a proposition into the first tuesday in november. nevertheless, mitt romney seems to be flailing. he did that really apologize for the remarks. he said they were off the cuff. but that usually means from the
6:21 pm
heart. he doubled down on them, the distancing himself. he is tried to turn them into something else. his own running mate -- i cannot remember when i have seen this in the past -- called these remarks inarticulate. he kind of slumped mitt romney on the rest. ann romney came out and as joe biden was a, "god bless her," and said these were taken out of context. excuse me, mrs. romney, they were not. he answer the question directly. the question was, how can you give people who are entitlements to vote for you before the general election? and this is the answer he gave. nothing taken out of context. the mitt romney campaign, again, has resorted to the usual spin. they cannot ignore what we at up there. it's still reverberates. >> david corn, he wrote a piece
6:22 pm
in july about mitt romney and bain and outsourcing jobs to china. as you have heard, we are broadcasting from fair grounds across the street from a bank capital-owned company called sensata, that is doing just that, closing at the company within a month or two and the people here -- actually, in a few weeks, there will all lose their jobs. we will be talking with a number of them, including the mayor of freeport. but what you have found in your research? >> several stories. there's a lot of talk about when mitt romney left bain in what he is responsible for. putting that aside, i wrote a series of stories when he was clearly leading bain, one of the subsidiary's, affiliate's, was making massive investments, tens of millions of dollars, and
6:23 pm
companies based here and china that were pioneers in outsourcing. one was a company in china called global tech that made appliances for places like hamilton, basically, taking advantage of the trend in outsourcing where instead of making these things in american factories, they were beaming in china. he invested in two other companies that are basically brokering deals in china, mexico, and elsewhere, setting up factories that would outsource not low-tech or medium tech jobs, but high-tech jobs, making things for microsoft, intel. he was a businessman. bain was a business entity. they saw the trend which was moving manufacturing to low-wage factories in europe, ireland, mexico, and china and thailand
6:24 pm
and all sorts of places. they took advantage of that. he is just not owning up to that. he is not fully explain what he was doing, what he was thinking about at the time. the city says, i am for jobs, jobs, jobs in america. that is clearly not the record when he was at bain. he could have shared those investments and look to those in america, and may be made less money than they did, but he chose not to. he chose to maximize profits by exploiting the trend toward outsourcing. even investing in companies that were pushing the envelope. they were pioneers in outsourcing. that is just part of the bain legacy, let alone what would happen with some of the companies that went bankrupt or downsized here and forced people to basically be out the door. >> as you point out, repeatedly says, as he did in february, we
6:25 pm
will not let china to continue to steal jobs from the united states of america. >> he is really in a position -- if i can put the tape and some of this into a larger context, which will allow me also to pitch my book, what is interesting to watch play out from my perspective is my book looks at how the white house, barack obama, responded to the drumming democrats took in a member 2010. it gets over the tax bill, don't ask, don't tell, egypt, libya, all of these things that happened in year-and-a-half after november 2010. one overarching theme is the president, whether you agree or disagree with some of his policy actions in that frame of time, saw the tea party, in and believed it would go too far.
6:26 pm
and the way he could set up a narrative for the 2012 election that would be beneficial to him and democrats was to set this up as a contest of values. to throwparty would be ticke people off the social safety programs that would privatize medicare and say, you're on your own. while he would make the case, as he did, to the budget cut fights, debt ceiling fights, and up until today, we need to have government as a progressive force where we can come together and make smart investments in education and infrastructure, innovation to keep the economy, you know, recovery as weak as it is heading in the right direction, while preserving the social safety net. he has tried to make compromises
6:27 pm
on some things that the progressives don't like, but overall he has put together a more progressive framework, talking about our communal values as a country versus mitt romney's libertarian or your on your own business run free, which will maximize the outcomes, for some americans. that is the way mitt romney has run his campaign. he has allowed the president, i think, more opportunities to make that case. in the 47% remark, which was put out this week, i think really puts a very stark delineation here between a campaign or perspective, the obama perspective that we have to care for 100% of the people and not just throw them off entitlements. and mitt romney who wants to -- really believes society is being burdened by too much government
6:28 pm
being demanded up like to many parasites. >> finally, david, was a the people who were serving the food who got or made this recording? it look like it was in the flowers on the buffet table because you can sing the waiters. or was the one of the wealthy donors themselves? >> i cannot characterize the source. the source was in the room. you have to think, you watch mitt romney in a room with people like him. the host of the event was a guy named marc leder who got into private equity years ago after visiting bain and being jazzed by what mitt romney was doing. this guy literally throws sex parties in the hamptons. he is pretty different than mitt romney in many ways, but very much like him in terms of the
6:29 pm
way he has made his living with private equity deals, some of which has led to factories and shut down and layoffs, the same store you're talking today about bain. so they get together in this room -- i'm not saying who the source was, but there are people who are serving food, people who are parking cars, people who are cleaning up, maybe security, but people not making a lot of money. they talk in these terms as it the fault does not exist. i had a cameraman, up to me a day ago saying he used to fill the events like this for people holding them and said he was amazed at how they talk as if nobody else was in the room. he said, i had an iphone back in those days, i would have read them out in the second and then my own copy of a video tape. it just verified the hemisphere.
6:30 pm
mitt romney often does not speak in public and away the is that he's in shows passion or conviction. when he made the 47% remark, he was showing, in my eye, a lot of passion, a lot of conviction, a guy talking with people the way he is used to talking with them, not under the glare of spotlights or media scrutiny. i think that is the tell here. people can go to and watch this for yourself. if you have not seen it, i mean, i think it is very telling. >> david, thank you for being with us. i want to have you back on to talk more extensively about your book, "showdown: the indside story of how obama fought back against boehner, cantor, and the tea party." david corn is the washington bureau to for mother jones magazine that broke this story about mitt romney's fundraiser,
6:31 pm
the secret video. thank you for being with us. when we come back, we are in freeport, illinois with bain workers, bain capital owns sensata, closing the plant that they have worked at for decades. they have gotten their pink notices. they are out in november. back in a moment. ♪ [music break]
6:32 pm
>> this is "democracy now!,", the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. welcome to bainport, a taste of
6:33 pm
the romney economy. that is the message on one of the banners that greets you here at this tent city where frosting -- where we are broadcasting from, 2 hours west of chicago, in between wisconsin and iowa. bainport is an encampment set up by workers or faced with losing their livelihoods and the factory across the street from us closes their doors in november, moving to china, taking around 170 jobs with it. in more, we're joined here freeport. the work for sensata technologies. this is significant because it is owned by bain capital, the private equity company co- founded by republican presidential nominee mitt romney, who continues to earn millions from his bain holdings. "democracy now!" for spoke with
6:34 pm
the sensata workers when we met them at the republican convention in tampa where they hoped to meet mitt romney to ask him to help them save their jobs. they never got a reply. they've returned to freeport, set up bainport, where they're hoping romney will visit in the lead up to the november election. we're joined by three guests at the bainport encampment. two of them are workers at sensata technologies. mark schreck has worked at sensata for six years, a single father of three girls. tom gaulrapp work at sensata technologies for 33 years. we're joined in the middle by the mayor of freeport, george gaulrapp, no relation to tom. he has supported this encampment and fended off calls for it to be shut down. we welcome you all to "democracy now!" tom, you have worked here for 33
6:35 pm
years. talk about your experience and what is happening. we saw you at the republican national convention. you came back and got your 60- day notice? >> yes, i actually got it the day after we came back from the labor day holiday. so as the schedule is right now, my last day of work will actually be the day before the election. it will be november 5. on november 6, after i go vote, i will go to the unemployment office and apply for benefits. >> tell us what happened here in freeport. >> this is a business that makes a lot of profits. sensata technology set a record last year for profitability. so it is not like they are moving these jobs because it is either moved it or it goes bankrupt. it is just they don't make enough. the chinese government is
6:36 pm
providing them a plant. they can save on labor. the dollar seems to be more important to them than any sense of community responsibility for the areas where they are. >> mayor george gaulrapp, talk about what this means for freeport. tell us about this town we are in. >> it is a sunny day here in freeport, but not for everybody. yeah friends like tom and mark here who are losing their jobs. governor romney talks about the 47%. these people are being forced into this group because they're losing the opportunity to work. the sensata workers are very hard-working, intelligent workers that can compete globally. when you take 170 jobs out of a community, it will have a negative effect. recently, we have other companies, and expand in freeport, which has been great for the committee, but you cannot take one step forward and
6:37 pm
two steps back in the employment field. >> talk about this encampment. what i meant at the beginning, you have been fending off calls for bainport to be shut down. we're on the fairgrounds'? >> yes, the fair grounds. i asked the board if the sensata workers could be here and they said, absolutely. they were fully supportive of our brothers and sisters here in our community and what they're going through. it is a good camp to draw attention, but some are saying, enough is enough. i am so happy that this fight will continue for the sensata workers. they think they will go way, but they are not going away. >> tom, this plant was owned by honeywell, who sold it to sensata and sensata was bought by bain capital. >> right. the building is still actually owned by honeywell. they are leasing the area to
6:38 pm
sensata. there are approximately maybe 15 to 20 honeywell employees still in the building. once the sensata employees are moved, eventually, the other honeywell employees will be moved out of the building to other honeywell facilities. the only sign of life you'll see over there will be the grass poking through the concrete. >> was there any thought of workers taking over this plant? >> i don't know that is a feasible option, you know. >> the machinery is being sent as we speak? >> as we speak -- for me personally, after being there for so long, it is kind of disturbing because the only sign where this equipment was is the discoloration of the floor where it sat. as you walk by any picture those pieces of equipment that were there -- and you picture the
6:39 pm
pieces of equipment that were there, you see the faces of the people you used to work with. that is really sad. it is disturbing because those people -- who knows what is in their future. a good paying, middle-class manufacturing job probably is not in their future. >> mark schreck, how old are your daughters? >> they are 11, 7, and my youngest turns 5 today. >> happy birthday to her. >> thank you. >> you are a single dad. when is your last day? >> i am not sure yet. i do have a meeting today at 3:15. i'm not sure what it is for. i'm guessing it could be when they tell me when my last day is. >> are you afraid for what will happen next? >> i am very afraid. it is difficult to help support three children with no job in
6:40 pm
today's world. >> ♪ [music break] george gaulrapp, do you feel the company sensata has an obligation to this town? >> they came in and purchased from honeywell, signed a contract. there no additional options for rental. a few days later, we heard on the street they are sending the jobs to china. they really give is no indication, no warning of what they were going to do. according to the line workers, it is just for additional profit. the city has gone a look at other companies that looked at facilities. one is from rockford, illinois, which would have felfit perfect, but they decided to expand in rockford. these are intelligent people here. they can compete globally. we would like to take this energy and get together and make sure we can find a company to
6:41 pm
come here and expand. we have many examples to other companies that jobs have expanded here in freeport, and with a great work force. >> i want ask about mitt romney's responsibility, white, tom, you have gone to his events to try to speak to him. i am looking at a peace around that says -- his connection is much more direct and having just added a company that's took over bain, but has left the print romneyville the direct investment in sensata the one fund titled bain capital fund lp dated december 31, 2009, meaning he likely has benefited from the ownership by bain and could benefit from the plant's closure and the outsourcing of the jobs to china. according to his 2011 personal
6:42 pm
disclosure financial disclosure, romney still holds the bain capital fund that contains the sensata investment. >> we look at it that bain capital board has made a decision. the sensata ceo has made his decision. so we believe that the only person in the world who can stop these jobs from being moved is mitt romney, because of his relationship with the bain board, his financial investment in bain capital. we also believe that if he would come and talk to us and see the impact this kind of outsourcing has on not only the people who work there, but as the mayor has addressed, the community and
6:43 pm
surrounding area, that he would see this is absolutely the wrong thing to do because of the devastation it brings. so far, we continue to receive no response from them. they continue to say they are unaware of the situation -- although, at this point, we know they are aware. >> so you went to iowa to try to talk to mitt romney? >> yes. they were having in event in iowa. if you when online, you to get free tickets. we decided we would go. i was seven rows from the podium that he stood behind. i asked him, will you please come to freeport, illinois and help sensata employees say their jobs? at that point we were removed. as we were being removed, his
6:44 pm
supporters are -- first they started "usa" chant. we agreed. then they started calling as communists. we were trying to keep our jobs from going to china. i have never understood that. >> so what are your plans now? what is going to happen with this encampment? we're sitting in a place where there are many tents around us, signs along the fence. among the signs, "outsourcer dco's not the jobs." "romley does have a jobs plan, too bad it is for china." >> we're going to stay here until either romney comes to free port or who knows what. we're hoping -- we plan on being here in chile comes to freeport. we would urge people to check out our website
6:45 pm
we applaud photos every day so you can see what is happening. we have people coming every day. they do not have to camp, just come in for an hour or two hours and join with us. and only show support for us, but working families and for the stopping of this outsourcing. so if your coming by freeport, illinois, do like amy did and stop in and see us. >> i want to ask about the korean workers who are expressing solidarity with you. >>es plant in the last brought in the special enforcement people, shall we say, to deal with the striking korean workers. we welcome everybody who works
6:46 pm
for sensata or bain. we are on the same page with them. we support their struggle just as much as they support hours. it is absolutely imperative that people stick together on this stuff because that is how we stop outsourcing of jobs. >> earlier this year, the two republican representatives in this area, bobby schilling and don manzullo, wrote a letter to sensata technologies, urging them to keep the jobs in freeport. they received a reply from sensata ceo thomas wroe, jr who told them --
6:47 pm
that was the sensata ceo saying this. your thoughts on how this is playing out locally? >> to us, it was just a situation of basically saying, well, we're going to do what we want and if you don't like it, that is the way it is. they seem to have this attitude that a person's excess is based on how much money they have. and that is not the case. and for them to say, well, we want to have our business there in asia were supposedly the business is at, the majority of it, well, there are a lot of businesses in the united states that sell a lot of stuff in asia that have manufacturing facilities in the u.s. that is just an excuse for them to accept the plan the chinese government built for them in china.
6:48 pm
>> you had to train your own workers, truck or rather the workers that will replace you. >> they brought in engineering people that will train the workers, the factory workers, the everyday workers in china. >> last response from the mayor, what do say two other mayors around the country who are facing these kind of factory plant closers with the -- closures with jobs been sent to china? >> president obama said the mayors have the feed on the ground to get things done. freeport is the home of the lincoln douglas debate site. we have invited both sides, governor romney and president obama, to debate and freeport to us like newt gingrich suggested in republican primaries. we sent letters to governor romney and call the campaign headquarters. it would be a perfect opportunity for him, the architect of who mastered how this in jobs overseas, to come
6:49 pm
here and reverse the trend. it is a perfect location to have your feet on the ground and meet a cross-section of america. >> thank you for being with us, mark schreck, tom gaulrapp, and mayor george gaulrapp. last night we came to the camp. we will be right back. ♪ [music break]
6:50 pm
>> this is "democracy now!,", the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. we're just arrived in freeport, illinois. it is about 10:00, 10:30 at night there's a large white tent here and a campfire. we are across the street from the sensata plant -- actually,
6:51 pm
the old honeywell plant bought by sensata, which is owned by bain capital. a group of workers and their supporters are camping out here until the factory closes. they're exporting its jobs to china. they built a stage, which we see over there in the darkness, the says "mitt romney, come to freeport." above is as "bainport." what is your name? >> dot turner. >> what are you doing here? >> we are protesting bank capital sending our jobs to china -- bain capital outsourcing our jobs to china. >> how long have you worked here? >> for 43 years. i started in 1969. i was 18 at the time. >> 43 years you worked in this one factory. >> yes. >> when did you learn you would be losing your jobs?
6:52 pm
>> december 30, 2010. >> what had happened? >> they called us into a room and told us, if you're sitting in this room today, you are an employee of sensata. >> honeywell had sold to sensata. >> yes, they had sold us to sensata. >> where does bain come into this? >> they own sensata. >> how did you feel on that day when they told you that published after they told you you're working for sensata, we need to learn you would be losing your job altogether? >> they told us that day. they were blunt and to the point. they told us to not build on false hopes thinking the company purchased the automotive line that it would be spare. they told us between within 18
6:53 pm
to 24 months the or phasing out the business and sending it to china, and they brought in chinese workers for us to train to take our jobs. >> you train your replacement? >> not in my particular area, but most of the other areas they had to chain thtrain the chinese workers. >> how do you feel and how do your co-workers field who were doing that? >> angry and a little. it was like an insult to take your job, but then request that you train the replacement. >> when does your job end? >> november 30. >> will you be getting any kind of severance? >> i will get a six months' severance and will be able to collect unemployment. >> six months' severance for -- >> 43 years.
6:54 pm
>> what are you going to do then? >> see what is available for me, what is out there, looked into some type of training. but at my age, who would want to go through that kind of trouble? when you have had a solid job for 43 years, hoping to retire the normal way. >> i see you all have built a stage that is inviting mitt romney to freeport. why mitt romney? >> because he is one of the investors and owner of bain capital. even though he denies it, he still has a big part in bank capital because bain capital is bringing the investors in millions of dollars. so why would you turn loose of a company you stand a chance of making millions? >> what would you say to him if he did come to freeport?
6:55 pm
>> i would tell him he has the power and the authority to stop this. if he was really concerned about the american people and if he was concerned about creating jobs, the 12 million jobs he always uses as a stump speech, he could create a straw by leaving it here. >> i am sure all randecker and have been at sensata for 33 years. >> you were there when it was honeywell and bought by sensata, which is owned by -- >> yes, sensata is open by bain capital. -- is owned by bain capital. >> are you camping here? >> yes, my gear is in the car. >> what is the point? why are you camping here? >> to prove a point. that we would do anything to save our jobs and bring attention that people will do just about anything to save a good job. that is always asking for, is to
6:56 pm
have our jobs saved. >> are you afraid of repercussions? >> not at this point. they are already taking my job and my livelihood, taking the means of supporting my family are taken away. with getting closer, it is almost like, you cannot do too much more to me. >> so here you sit in front of a campfire to stay warm. >> and try to look into the flames and reflects and find some calming sense out of all the chaos. >> you, remarkably, were sent to china by honeywell. >> yes, i went over there and trained in 2010. >> were you concerned at the time that this flow of jobs china could end up meaning you're all going to lose your
6:57 pm
jobs? >> no, i thought i would be safe with the automotive because honeywell had been tried to sell automotive for quite some time. we did hear when we were in china that it was sold. when we came back, they denied it. about four months later, they announced it. so it was a surprise that it was that fast. i thought it would take more time. so be it, i guess. life will go on. it will just be a hard one. >> so you went there and retraining workers -- and were training workers, even shalit will be taking the jobs here of the workers here. and chinese workers were sent here as well? >> sensata brought their own chinese workers over to train on the automotive lines. where i was asked was the air
6:58 pm
flow pressure lines from honeywell. they brought over their employees and some were new hires and some had been there for some time. we had to train them on the operations there on our particular line, which the technical -- they are technical machines. they really did not pick up well on the machines being built. not to mention the machines do not run a great all the time. so when you are running so many parts over the machine, things break. if you do not see them and are not running them on a day-to-day basis, then you run into the problem, you may not be able to fix it. >> cheryl randecker worked for 33 years at the plant dot turner 43 years. that is our show from freeport, illinois. democracy now! is looking for feedback from people who appreciate the closed captioning. e-mail your comments to or mail them to democracy now! p.o. box 693 new york, new york 10013.
6:59 pm
[captioning made possible by democracy now!]