Team Emerson for Jo Ann Emerson challenged her opponent to explain how the $787 billion stimulus built the new state-of-the-art, billion dollar Holcim cement facility in Ste. Geneveive, Missouri, as he claimed in a press release this afternoon. The Holcim plant entered planning stages 13 years ago and has been operational since 2009, the same year the stimulus bill passed, which Emerson voted against.
"Which billion dollars of the stimulus went to Holcim to create 2500 construction jobs and 250 permanent positions? Better yet, when did they build the time machine to take that billion dollars back to the year 1997? Its pretty obvious Tommy Sowers has not lived in Southern Missouri very long or else he would already know the answer to these questions," said campaign manager Justin Gibbs. "Since this project began in 1997, we would love to hear his explanation. But I suspect that, just like the liberal Democratic leadership he supports, Tommy Sowers is simply way too anxious to overstate his case in favor of the stimulus. He's discrediting the huge effort on the part of a lot of Missourians to make the Holcim project a reality and the tremendous investment Holcim is making in our state.
"For a politician who says he's all about jobs, Tommy Sowers doesn't seem to understand the amount of effort that businesses must put into creating them. Most jobs don't come from stimulus bills, as gifts from the government. Job creation depends on the private investment, the hard work and the ingenuity of businesses like Holcim and the people who make them successful."
Gibbs noted Sowers has repeatedly been forced to step back from policy positions and inaccurate statements since he began his campaign, most recently demanding Emerson apologize to every member of the armed services in order to cover his stance in support of gays serving in the military. Sowers is also waffling on whether he would support Nancy Pelosi for Speaker of the House, and he has refused to answer questions about his support for the Pelosi/Obama health care bill since telling the Southeast Missourian that he would vote for the bill, including the use of federal dollars for abortion. Finally, Sowers has accused Emerson of attending fund-raising events in Washington, DC, which she didn't go to.
"I'd say these are rookie mistakes, but Sowers has been running for Congress since last fall. Sowers is simply running a misinformation campaign against our member of Congress because he knows he cannot beat her on the issues. If he can lie about her position on the stimulus, which Jo Ann opposed and continues to fight to return to taxpayers, then who knows if he's capable of telling the truth about anything," Gibbs said.
Emerson leads Sowers 72-18 in polls.