During a press conference on Tuesday, former U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, a candidate in the July 14 GOP primary runoff for the party’s U.S. Senate nomination, railed against efforts from the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) to outsource IT jobs.

According to reports, the TVA announced in January it planned to outsource one out of every five of its information technology jobs, resulting in 120 in-house IT jobs being cut as the economy faced headwinds due to the coronavirus pandemic. Sessions called it a big mistake, adding the prospects for employment for those laid off were “slim” given the economy. Sessions continued:

I think it is a big mistake, and I think we need to fight back, and I was so proud of the president last night when he canceled some of the work visa programs. Let me just say, we admit 1.2 million people every year in this country, permanent legal residents. We have another 4.1 million that are coming not to be permanent residents but to take jobs in this economy. The problem is we don’t have any jobs in this economy. We have 13% unemployment, record unemployment in this country. And the last thing we need to be doing is bringing in white-collar jobs from abroad to deny college graduates, even high school graduates, deny so many people who are actually working these jobs — putting them out of this market... Imagine if you were one of those people being laid off today, what are your job prospects with 13% unemployment? They’re slim. Are they going to be on welfare, food stamps, unemployment compensation? The TVA doesn’t have to worry about that. They are essentially looking to get, as so many of these other companies, a lower cost of workers. (Emphasis added)

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Updated: Thu, Jul 9th 2020 @ 12:55pm EDT