Outsourcing war blows up in race for Governor - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Outsourcing war blows up in race for Governor

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MADISON (WKOW) -- A war is blowing up in Wisconsin's race for Governor, as incumbent Scott Walker (R) and challenger Mary Burke (D) try to make the other look sympathetic to companies that outsource Wisconsin jobs.

The Walker campaign launched a new ad Wednesday attacking Burke's record on outsourcing during her time as a Trek Bicycle executive.

In a release about the ad, Friends of Scott Walker Spokesperson Tom Evenson writes: "How can the voters trust someone like Mary Burke to help them create jobs when her own company shipped Wisconsin jobs overseas?"

But a few short hours later, Gov. Walker's top economic official defended the practice of outsourcing.

"We are in a global marketplace and some companies, to be successful financially, need to outsource," said Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation CEO Reed Hall.

Hall was responding to questions about a story from our ABC affiliate in Madision, 27 News, which showed at least two companies that received tax credits from WEDC later outsourced Wisconsin jobs to foreign countries.

A 27 News investigation uncovered that both the Eaton Corporation and Plexus Corporation received financial awards from WEDC, only to later lay off workers whose jobs were taken by employees at the companies' foreign facilities.

"I'm sorry that they temporarily had to outsource some jobs, but I think ultimately over the long-term its gonna be a great win for Wisconsin with both these companies," said Hall.

Speaking frankly about the practice in general, Hall says outsourcing is a reality of times we live in.

"I don't think anyone wants to do that, but its a part of what happens in the State of Wisconsin and every other state in the nation," said Hall. 

Burke slammed the Governor last week in response to our story about the WEDC by saying, as Governor, she would insist every state financial award given out would protect against the outsourcing of Wisconsin jobs.

Gov. Walker's campaign called Burke a hypocrite and continues to hammer Burke for her outsourcing of jobs at Trek.
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