Strengthening American Manufacturing

This week, Senators Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and Roy Blunt (R-MO) and Representatives Tom Reed (R-NY) and Joe Kennedy (D-MA) took action that’ll bolster the manufacturing sector, strengthen the economy, and help create a better bargain for middle class families. The bipartisan Revitalize American Manufacturing and Innovation Act of 2013, introduced yesterday in the Senate and today in the House, calls for the creation of a Network for Manufacturing Innovation, expanding our ability to compete for advanced manufacturing jobs by investing in manufacturing technologies and capabilities.

The Act calls for resources to create a network of manufacturing innovation institutes, based on the pilot institute in Youngstown, Ohio launched by President Obama last year, and the efforts under way by the Administration to launch three new institutes this year. The Act builds on the President’s past and current proposals for a National Network for Manufacturing Innovation with a goal of up to 45 institutes over the next decade. These institutes bring together companies and universities, supported by Federal agencies, to co-invest in world-leading manufacturing technologies and workforce capabilities, giving our workers and firms the tools they need to compete.

With the introduction of this legislation, it’s clear that revitalizing American manufacturing and innovation is a goal both parties can get behind.  America’s manufacturing sector is critical to an innovation economy that supports a strong and growing middle class. After a decade of decline, the manufacturing sector has added 515,000 jobs since the beginning of 2010, and if we continue to put the right policies in place we have the opportunity to drive a U.S. manufacturing renaissance as outlined in a speech at Brookings last week.  

We commend Senators Brown and Blunt and Representatives Reed and Kennedy for their bipartisan leadership in building America’s strength in advanced manufacturing and we’ll  work side by side with them to move this important initiative forward.

Gene Sperling is the Director of the National Economic Council. Jason Miller is Special Assistant to the President for Manufacturing Policy
Related Topics: Manufacturing, Economy, Ohio