ALTON, Ill. (AP) — Using a southwestern Illinois steel plant as a backdrop, U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin lobbied Friday for legislation designed to reward companies that keep their headquarters in the United States.

The Illinois Democrat made his pitch for passage of the Patriot Employer Tax Credit Act after touring the Alton Steel factory northeast of St. Louis.

The measure would give companies a tax credit of roughly $1,200 per worker if they remain U.S.-based, provide Affordable Care Act-compliant health insurance to their employees, and pay most of their workers an hourly rate equal to 150 percent of poverty-level wages.

Durbin said that "in a time of tight budgets, we should reserve tax credits for the companies, like Alton Steel, that do the most to help workers and our economy here at home, not corporations that ship jobs overseas."