Wow, Wis. Politifact, tell us what you really think:
The claim is made in a flier Wirch’s campaign mailed July 25, 2011 to voters. The flier cites Uline, a national distributor of shipping, industrial and packaging materials, and includes this headline:
“Bob Wirch helped bring Uline to our area — creating 800 local jobs.”
So, did he?
Uline describes itself as a family-owned company that employs 2,600 employees across the country. It was founded in 1980 by Dick and Liz Uihlein; Dick Uihlein is the great-grandson of the founder of the Jos. Schlitz Brewing Co., one of Milwaukee’s famed beer makers.
The company was headquartered in Waukegan, Ill., just south of the Wisconsin border, when it announced n June 2006 that it would expand in Pleasant Prairie, a Kenosha suburb about 40 miles south of Milwaukee. Both Wirch and Steitz, a lawyer who is making his first run for public office, live in the village.
Uline made big news in January 2008, when it announced it would move its headquarters to Pleasant Prairie and build a distribution center there, investing $100 million and employing 1,000 people by 2010. The company also said it would utilize state government incentives that were later calculated to be worth up to $18.6 million over nine years.
The Wirch campaign flier led Dick and Liz Uihlein to issue a statement in response on Aug. 3, 2011.
“We worked with a variety of state and local officials during the relocation process; however, state Sen. Wirch was not one of them,” the couple said in the statement, noting they do not support Wirch’s campaign.
That’s a strong rebuttal to Wirch’s claim that he aided in the company’s move.
The statement also noted that a bill Wirch sponsored to help Pleasant Prairie with economic development — which is also mentioned in his campaign flier — was not introduced until July 2011 — months after Uline had completed its relocation. The bill was “by no means a determinative factor in our decision to relocate,” the company’s statement said.
Wirch’s claim of helping land a big new employer is not only false but ridiculous — or, Pants on Fire.
According to Wisconsin native, Steve Eggleston in the Greenroom, the Steitz/Wirch race is tightening, what more, the Republican Party of Wisconsin is actively organizing GOTV efforts in both districts.
A colossal embarrassment to the Wirch campaign like this one could prove to be toxic for the embattled fleebagger in this tight race
Hat tip: Charles B.