CHICAGO (CBS) — U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) and the Republican state lawmaker who wants to unseat him have been clashing over proposed legislation favoring companies that keep jobs in America, over those that move operations overseas.

WBBM Newsradio Political Editor Craig Dellimore reports Durbin took to the Senate floor on Tuesday to blast North Chicago-based drug-maker AbbVie for planning to buy a company in Ireland, and move its own corporate headquarters abroad.

“Why would a great American corporation – the 8th largest pharmaceutical company – want to pick up and move to an island off Ireland? To avoid paying United States taxes,” Durbin said. “Should we be bending our tax code so AbbVie and the other corporate deserters get a break by moving overseas? Or should we be changing our tax code to encourage good companies like Wheatland to stay in America, and pay a fair wage?”

The senator has proposed legislation known as the Patriotic Employer Tax Credit Act, which would provide tax incentives to companies that keep their offices and jobs in the U.S., and end tax breaks for companies that move jobs or offices overseas

“I want to give a break to those companies that pay a good wage, keep their jobs in the United States. I think they deserve an incentive to stay,” he said.

However, a spokesman for state Sen. Jim Oberweis (R-Sugar Grove), who is challenging Durbin in November, said “There is nothing ‘patriotic’ about a career politician bullying a job-creating Illinois company for legally using the tax code he helped create. Instead of haranguing companies that employ thousands of Illinoisans, Dick Durbin ought to do his job and reform our tax code, which includes the highest corporate tax rate in the world.”

Watch & Listen LIVE