A group of northeast Ohio business leaders and elected officials objects to a TV ad from Gov. Ted Strickland that they say casts Invacare Corp. (NYSE:IVC) in a negative light for outsourcing jobs.
In a letter signed by 33 business executives and politicians, the group said it was "disappointing" that Strickland expressed "such politically centered criticisms" of a company that’s an important part of the local economy, the Lorain Morning Journal reported.
The Strickland ad features a Lorain woman named Nilda Ramos whose husband lost his job at Invacare after having worked for the Elyria-based home health products manufacturer for 22 years. Her husband’s job was shipped to China, Ramos claims.
The ad is intended to show that Strickland’s Republican opponent in November’s gubernatorial election, John Kasich, is guilty by association in supporting the outsourcing of Ohio jobs because Kasich sits on Invacare’s board of directors.
"John Kasich sat on Invacare’s board as a director, and signed off on jobs being outsourced and sent to China and Mexico," Ramos says in the ad. "I believe they sent those jobs overseas so they can make more profit."
While the Strickland campaign has attempted to paint the ad as a slap at the practice of outsourcing–and not at Invacare–the group behind the letter doesn’t buy that explanation.
"Any responsible business owner or chief executive would have deep reservations about investing in a community where even large, long-established and successful employers are not immune from being criticized by the state’s most powerful public official for political purposes," they wrote.
The group is calling on Strickland to stop broadcasting the ad, which is airing on Cleveland-area TV stations and could eventually be broadcast across the state, according to the Morning Journal.