Monday’s editorial from the Chicago Tribune, "The cookie is crumbling for Illinois" shows clearly how badly Gov. Scott Walker was outmaneuvered in negotiating the Foxconn deal. Although the editorial leaves the taste of sour grapes, in truth Illinois never had a chance.
Foxconn was coming to Wisconsin from day one. Manufacturing electronics in general and LCD screens in particular requires large volumes of water. Foxconn was always looking in the Great Lakes basin, and Wisconsin stood out as having a Legislature willing to deplete an aquifer to satisfy agribusiness and to risk pollution of wetlands and waterways for mining interests. This same Legislature had already crippled labor in the state with Act 10 and right-to-work legislation.
The cherry on this sundae is a Wisconsin governor so desperate for a “jobs win” to put on his resume before his next presidential run, he is willing pay $3 billion for it. Foxconn sees this desperation and is taking Gov. Walker, and Wisconsin, for every cent it can.
So don’t feel so bad, people of Illinois. Sure, your state is a mess -- but that’s not why you lost this one.
Tom Neuser, Madison