Washington, D.C. — U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly spoke on the floor of the Senate today about the crisis facing America’s steel industry. Donnelly has continuously fought for Indiana’s steel industry, including last week when he spoke out on U.S. Steel’s announcement that it was laying off more Hoosier workers. Last month, Donnelly called on President Obama to prioritize enforcement against illegally-dumped steel and use all available tools and resources to combat illegal trade.
Donnelly said in part during his speech, “For several years our domestic industry has been under constant attack. Our steel industry is in the midst of a crisis more severe than the one experienced nearly two decades ago.
“…As a Senator from Indiana, a state that accounts for one quarter of all domestic steel capacity, I visit with steelworkers and their families to listen to their concerns about the impact of illegally-traded steel flooding our market…These workers have never asked me or anyone else for a handout—they simply ask that all parties compete on a level playing field because these Hoosier steelworkers know how valued their steel products are here and abroad.
“Congress and the Obama Administration must work together to not only prevent further job losses, but work to allow the steel industry to grow… Strict enforcement of the law is necessary to protect the domestic industry now and to deter bad actors from abusing the system in the future.
“…We must double-down on our efforts to combat the illegally-traded steel coming into our markets. We must do so together, not only for the businesses and workers impacted by the onslaught of illegally-traded steel, but for the children, and the families, and the communities who have been linked for generations to the success of our nation’s steel industry.”
In last month’s letter to the President, Donnelly wrote, in part, “The status quo is not acceptable when facilities are closing and steelworkers are losing jobs…It is crucial that you use every tool in your toolbox to combat illegal trade because communities in Indiana are relying on it.” Illegally-traded imports are flooding U.S. markets and putting the domestic steel industry into crisis. In 2015, Donnelly helped the Senate pass bipartisan Trade Enforcement legislation to help crack down on foreign currency manipulation and strengthen enforcement of trade laws. Now, he is pushing to make sure the federal government fully enforces the new laws passed by Congress. In addition to his most recent efforts, Donnelly has testified in-person at the International Trade Commission on behalf of the Hoosier steel industry and written numerous letters on trade enforcement cases in support of applying tariffs on unfairly traded steel products.
To watch Senator Donnelly’s speech click here.