Choice to Head Manufacturing Post in Question
The Washington Post
Six months after promising to create an office to help the nation's struggling manufacturers, President Bush settled on someone to head it, but the nomination was being reconsidered last night after Democrats revealed that his candidate had opened a factory in China.
Several officials said the nomination of Anthony F. Raimondo, chairman and chief executive of a Nebraska company that makes metal buildings and grain silos, may be scrapped because of the political risk but said that had not been decided. Bush's opponent, Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.), has made job losses his chief point of attack, and some administration officials feared the nomination could hand him fresh ammunition.
Kerry's campaign, tipped off about the impending nomination several hours earlier, hastened to distribute news reports that Raimondo's firm, Behlen Manufacturing Co. of Columbus, Neb., had laid off 75 U.S. workers in 2002, four months after announcing plans for a $3 million factory in northwest Beijing.