On "Fox News Sunday," Texas Senator Ted Cruz defended Carly Fiorina's business record amid ongoing controversy about outsourced jobs in Indiana.
Cruz discussed his intent to bring manufacturing jobs to the United States and touted his choice of the former Hewlett-Packard CEO as his running mate. Upon the mention of Fiorina, host Chris Wallace pressed Cruz about her record on outsourcing.
Wallace cited a Politifact report from September 2010, which was written at the time of Fiorina's ultimately unsuccessful bid to represent California in the Senate. The issue of outsourcing was focal point of the race against incumbent Barbara Boxer, in which Fiorina's tenure at HP was heavily criticized by her opponent.
"Outsourcing is a big issue in Indiana, I don't have to tell you, because the company that controls Carrier air conditioning has announced they're going to shift 2,100 jobs from Indiana to Mexico," Wallace said. "But Fiorina has a record as head of Hewlett-Packard laying off 30,000 people and outsourcing many of those jobs to India and China."
Carrier, the heating and air-conditioning company, announced in February it would begin to eliminate 1,400 jobs in Indianapolis next year. In addition, another subsidiary of United Technologies Corporation is cutting 700 jobs in northeastern Indiana.
"Will the Cruz-Fiorina team do the same thing to Indiana that she did to Hewlett-Packard?" Wallace asked Cruz.
Cruz pushed back on the question.
"Carly has an incredible business record and an incredible personal story," Cruz said. "Carly started off as a secretary and she rose the corporate ladder, became CEO of the largest technology company in the world… she was the first female CEO of a Fortune 20 company in history and she helped HP become the largest technology company in the world, achieved remarkable success. Many of those jobs by the way were transferred from one state to another within the United States."
The Texas lawmaker then said that when it came to bringing jobs to the United States, there could not be a "clearer contrast" between the Cruz-Fiorina ticket and Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton.
The business mogul has said he will impose tariffs on Carrier if it moves to Mexico.
"It is a travesty that Carrier is pulling jobs out of Indiana, moving them to Mexico," Cruz said before blaming the policies of the Obama administration. "What is Donald Trump's response to that? It is he says he's going to punish Carrier, he's going to use the power of the federal government to punish them… that's the response of big government liberals. That we're going to enact policies that kill jobs and then when businesses flee, we're going to use the power of government to punish them."
Cruz's statements come ahead of the Hoosier State primary on May 3, a contest that could have serious consequences for the vitality of his campaign.
Trump holds a 15-point lead over Cruz in Indiana, according to a new NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist poll. Trump has the support of 49 percent of likely Republican primary voters. Cruz and Ohio Gov. John Kasich follow with 34 percent and 13 percent respectively.