The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Patriotic Millionaires on Foxconn: "Indifference on Display"

"The people of Wisconsin, and America, deserve better."

Milwaukee, WI

Today, President Donald Trump joins Speaker of the House Paul Ryan and Governor of Wisconsin Scott Walker to break ground on the Foxconn factory. However, in order to lure the Taiwanese-based company to WI, the state had to offer an astounding $3.7 billion in tax incentives. It is the largest taxpayer subsidy of a foreign corporation in the US history by a state. In response to today's groundbreaking, Chair of the Patriotic Millionaires Morris Pearl had the following to say:

"As President Trump and Paul Ryan join Scott Wallace today to celebrate the single largest state taxpayer subsidy of a foreign corporation in US history, let's not forget the workers just down the road at Harley-Davidson whose jobs are in jeopardy. Because of Trump's reckless and unnecessary trade war with the European Union, thousands of Wisconsinite jobs are forfeit. And now they're supposed to cheer on Foxconn, a foreign corporation with a proven track record of breaking its promises when it comes to job creation that is set to receive $3.7 billion in tax incentives.

Even if you believe everything that Scott Walker tells you - 'Foxconn will someday employ about 13,000 workers who will each make about 36 thousand dollars per year' - Wisconsin is giving over $284,000 dollars to the Foxconn shareholders for each of those jobs. That might make sense for the politicians who hope to see a piece of that money as campaign donations, but it does not make sense for the people of Wisconsin. Wisconsin could have used that money to hire 13,000 teachers and still have a lot left over, but restoring the cuts in the public education system of Wisconsin would only contribute a little to making the very rich even richer.

This is how the Trump economy works. He and his cronies pick winners and losers through the tax code and tariffs, and anyone unlucky enough to be picked as a loser is left wondering when America is going to be great again for them. Is this what Wisconsin taxpayers signed up for? Did they ask to further line the wallets of Foxconn's executives while watching their neighbors lose their jobs? Did they ask to spend $3.7 billion on this deal rather than invest in their infrastructure or education? The indifference on display at the Foxconn groundbreaking today is shameful. The people of Wisconsin, and America, deserve better."

The Patriotic Millionaires is a group of high-net worth Americans who share a profound concern about the destabilizing level of inequality in America. Our work centers on the two things that matter most in a capitalist democracy: power and money. Our goal is to ensure that the country's political economy is structured to meet the needs of regular Americans, rather than just millionaires. We focus on three "first" principles: a highly progressive tax system, a livable minimum wage, and equal political representation for all citizens.

(202) 446-0489