Denver (CNN) - Republican Senate candidate Carly Fiorina may have spent the night in the hospital, but her campaign didn't break stride launching a new attack Tuesday on opponent Barbara Boxer.
In a biting new Web video, the Fiorina campaign calls Boxer a "hypocrite" for holding a town hall event at Cisco Systems and accepting campaign contributions from its CEO. The spot alleges Cisco has outsourced jobs – something Boxer repeatedly attacks Fiorina for doing as CEO of Hewlett Packard.
"Barbara Boxer loves to complain about companies that ship jobs overseas. So why is she giving a speech at Cisco when they repeatedly outsourced jobs to countries like India?" intoned the female narrator on the new Fiorina campaign video. The spot lists campaign contributions Boxer accepted from the company, its PAC and employees, while the voiceover says, "Barbara Boxer is pandering to them, cashing in while criticizing them: typical lifelong politician."
This is a clear response to the Boxer campaign's relentless effort to tar Fiorina, who campaigns on her record as a businesswoman, by branding her an outsourcer. In Boxer's first attack ad she slammed Fiorina for "sending jobs overseas" while she was CEO of Hewlett Packard. The narration says "Fiorina shipped jobs to China" and concludes "Carly Fiorina: outsourcing jobs. Out for herself."
The Boxer campaign isn't apologizing for accepting Cisco's warm embrace. In fact, one Boxer aide suggests Cisco CEO John Chambers' endorsement is particularly meaningful since Fiorina was once a silicon-valley colleague. "We're proud that John Chambers and other Silicon Valley leaders took a close look at the candidates – and then they endorsed Barbara Boxer over Carly Fiorina," Boxer campaign manager Rose Kapolczynski says in a statement to CNN. She continues, "Support from John Chambers hasn't changed the fact that Barbara Boxer is focused on creating California jobs and wants to end tax breaks for companies that ship jobs overseas. We were happy to have the opportunity to reach some of the thousands of Cisco employees based in California."
The website opensecrets.org, which tracks political contributions, lists Cisco as the 11th largest contributor to Boxer's campaigns since 1989. According to their analysis, the Senator received $73,450 over time from Cisco's staff and PAC.
Cisco affirms to CNN about half of the California-based company's employees work overseas. A spokesman explains about half of its revenue comes from outside the US, so it follows half its employees would be based overseas as well. According to the company's most recent annual report they had 70,700 employees, 38,350 inside the US, 32,350 outside the US as of this July. In that report, the company told the SEC: "We conduct significant sales and customer support operations in countries outside of the United States" and plan to "expand our level of business activity in two large emerging countries, India and China" but that's dependent "on increasing sales in these countries."
In a statement responding to the Fiorina attack Cisco spokesperson John Earnhardt writes, "Cisco is a proud California company and one of the very few companies hiring today. With over 37,000 U.S. employees, we've added over 6,000 U.S. jobs in the United States over the past four years despite the difficult economic times, and we continue to hire US positions today. Further, Cisco invited all four California candidates for Governor and US senator to speak to our 20,000 California-based employees, and Ms. Fiorina, a former member of our Board of Directors, declined the offer."
- CNN Money's Stacy Cowley and Drew Trachtenberg contributed to this report