This weekend, while other Democratic candidates for governor stayed home, Andy Gronik took the fight for a Wisconsin That Works to Gov. Scott Walker’s at the Republican Party’s state convention. Gronik deployed a rolling billboard that circled the convention center like a shark, calling out Walker for the special interest donors he’s prioritized over Wisconsinites since being elected. The next day, reports surfaced that Foxconn Technology Group selected the Hammes Company, owned by major Republican donor and Scott Walker ally, Jon Hammes, as the master planner for building its manufacturing complex in Southeast Wisconsin. Wisconsin taxpayers gave Foxconn about $4.5 billion dollars and Foxconn gave Gov. Walker’s buddy the contract to plan the building complex—a sweet deal for Hammes, not so sweet for regular Wisconsinites.
According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, the Hammes Company was selected by Foxconn Technology Group to be the “lead partner in planning infrastructure and other developments for the planned $10 billion, 22-million-square-foot manufacturing complex in Racine County.” The paper also reports that company founder and CEO, Jon Hammes, was “Walker’s campaign finance chairman for his re-election bid and 2015 presidential run.”
This isn’t the first instance of Walker campaign donors benefitting from the Foxconn Hail Mary. According to research released last week by One Wisconsin Now, political donations to Walker from the owners (and their families) of subcontractors on the project total at least $359,000.
“This has to stop and I’m going to stop it,” said Andy Gronik. “Families throughout Wisconsin are getting clobbered while Walker’s buddies cash in on their purchased political influence. Pay-to-play politics is killing our state and the suffering is immeasurable. People everywhere tell me, ‘I’m not going to make it—I’m not going to able to get my kids the braces they need; I’m not going to be able to go to college; I’ll never be able to buy the camper I’ve always wanted; I can’t afford groceries to survive this week.’ Meanwhile, Walker’s former finance chair lands a lucrative contract in Walker’s multi-billion dollar giveaway. It’s sickening! This is not our Wisconsin.”
While Gronik’s platoon of challengers stayed home last weekend, Andy took the fight to Walker’s doorstep for all three days of the state Republican convention. “We’re not going to talk Walker out of office, we’re going to have to beat him out of office,” Gronik continued. “I’m a fighter, I’ve stood up and fought for the people and things I believe in all my life. I took on wealthy homeowners, the largest brokerage firm in the state and the largest insurance company in the world when my family was injured. I would not stand down until I received justice for my family. I will fight just as hard for the people of Wisconsin as I fought for my family. Walker’s got to go and I am the only candidate that will beat him in November.”
“Foxconn is a disaster for Wisconsin taxpayers, but if there’s anyone who can make this bad deal less bad, it’s me. I worked with struggling businesses my entire career and helped them solve problems and access the capital they needed to grow and create jobs. I am uniquely qualified to make Foxconn work better for Wisconsin and ideally suited to deliver the fight it’s going to take to beat Walker. It’s time for a Wisconsin That Works for everyone. I have a pragmatic approach to turning our state around with common-sense ideas and a 35-year track record of bringing people together to execute,” concluded Gronik.