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Alabama Governor outworks Sanford - Lands Airbus plant
June 23, 2005

June 22, 2005

News Release - For Immediate Release
Contact: Lachlan McIntosh (803) 799-7798

Today, we learned that Airbus chose Mobile, Alabama over Charleston, South Carolina as the site for its new $600 million refueling tanker factory -- an economic development plum which could come with as many as 1,000 new jobs.
The New York Times recently wrote a glowing story about the efforts of Alabama Governor Bob Riley to land the plant:

According to news reports, Alabama Governor Riley assembled a diverse, bi-partisan team of leaders to meet with the European Aeronautic Defense and Space Company (Airbus) in Paris.  This group of Alabamans worked together, set aside any differences, and tirelessly promoted their state to land this facility. The New York Times described their efforts as "sophisticated."

South Carolina's Mark Sanford, on the other hand, visited Paris with one cabinet official and did little to reach out to other state leaders for assistance. The contrast to Airbus officials had to be extraordinary.   

South Carolina Democratic Party Chairman Joe Erwin, himself the founder of the largest marketing firm in the state noted, "When you're working to win a large piece of business, you can't take anything for granted. And while you have to watch the bottom line, you also have to play to win, investing appropriately in opportunities like this.  Otherwise, playing at all is just a waste of money."  He continued, "Facing the nation's fourth highest unemployment rate, Mark Sanford has again failed to move South Carolina forward.  His inability to work with others is really hurting our state." 

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