MADISON, Wis. — Despite Gov. Scott Walker’s six-month sell-off of Wisconsin state government to corporate special interests at the cost of nearly $2 billion over the next decade, General Electric’s X-Ray business just announced it is moving its Waukesha headquarters to Beijing, China.
“Between Gov. Scott Walker’s endless corporate tax breaks and General Electric’s endless greed, it’s hard to pick a bigger villain in this one,” said Scot Ross, One Wisconsin Now Executive Director. “Can we finally agree that corporate tax breaks at the expense of working families are a failure and the politicians that hand them out like candy are a failure?”
The announcement made about shipping the headquarters from Wisconsin to China is part of a $2 billion investment GE is making overseas. The X-Ray business is a 115-year old American operation and the headquarters has been in Wisconsin since 1947. A spokesperson claimed that no jobs would be lost in Waukesha, but provided no guarantee for how long. The company has already announced it is hiring 200 new engineers in China.
Earlier this year, it was reported General Electric paid zero in income taxes last year, despite earning $14 billion in profits worldwide, including more than $5 billion in the United States.
“Gov. Walker and the Republican legislature just handed out nearly $2 billion in new corporate tax breaks at the expense of schools, kids, seniors and workers,” said Ross. “With this news, will Walker and the Republican legislature finally admit that corporate tax breaks are a failure?”
In the past six months, Walker and the Republicans have gutted public education by $1.6 billion, the University of Wisconsin system by $250 million, the technical college system by $71 million, $500 million from Medical Assistance and actually raised taxes on seniors and working families by $70 million. All the while, taking away the rights of 175,000 Wisconsin workers.