Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo, the incoming US commerce secretary, has committed to help bring back American jobs lost to other countries.
“If confirmed, I look forward to deploying the full resources of the agency to keep the American worker at the center of US trade policy and to reinvigorate American manufacturing by reshoring jobs that have gone oversees,” she said in her statement.
“When given a fair chance, no one can outcompete the American worker and small business,” she added.
While she did not say to what country the US lost many of its jobs, it was very clear that she was referring to China.
Raimondo will appear in Congress on Wednesday to begin her confirmation process to become President Joe Biden’s commerce secretary.
“The Commerce Department has a simple but vital mission – to spur good-paying jobs, empower entrepreneurs to innovate and grow, and help American workers and businesses compete,” Raimondo said. “These same priorities have guided my life and career.”
Raimondo added details about how she plans to lead the department as the United States continues to absorb the economic effects of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.
“First, we need to immediately address the economic damage caused by the pandemic,” she wrote. “Covid has touched every community – urban, suburban, rural, tribal – and exacerbated long-standing inequities facing low-income families and communities of color.
Rhode Island’s Democratic governor since 2015, Raimondo is a former venture capitalist who is expected to face direct questioning about how she plans to handle China’s growing global influence in commerce, tariffs levied against European allies under the Trump administration and the government’s climate change policies.
Raimondo angered some Democratic-supporting unions in Rhode Island when she cut taxes and rolled back regulations to help businesses. The state’s Republican Party filed an ethics complaint over her $1 billion contract extension with a gaming company because it didn’t go through the competitive bidding process.
Raimondo, however, remains popular in Rhode Island. She was initially elected state treasurer in 2011 before her gubernatorial election in 2014. She was reelected in 2018 for a second term.