A Taiwanese company that assembles Apple’s iPhones and other electronics is considering building a plant in Wisconsin that could employ thousands of people and give Gov. Scott Walker a huge political boost as he prepares to run for re-election.
A person with direct knowledge of the negotiations who was not authorized to speak publicly confirmed to The Associated Press on Wednesday that the state is in talks with Foxconn. At least one other upper Midwest state, Michigan, is also pursuing the plant.
President Donald Trump alluded to negotiations with an unspecified company during a visit to Milwaukee on Tuesday, saying Walker might get “a very happy surprise very soon.” Trump said “we were negotiating with a major, major incredible manufacturer of phones and computers and televisions.”
The Wisconsin Assembly joined conservatives in other states Wednesday to call for holding a constitutional convention to require Congress to balance the federal budget.
The measure passed, 54-41, with seven Republicans siding with all Democrats to vote against it. The proposal now goes to the Senate, which like the Assembly is run by Republicans.
Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester) said a convention is necessary to get the federal government’s finances in shape.
“We are drowning in debt,” he said. “Congress has failed to act in any meaningful way to curb our growing debt.”
Rep. Fred Kessler (D-Milwaukee) argued against the plan, contending a convention could lead to drastic changes to long-established rights to free speech and to own guns.
Private schools in the state’s voucher programs would be required to conduct background checks before hiring staff and would no longer need to meet some academic standards under a bill the Senate approved Wednesday.
The bill, which was introduced late last week with bipartisan support, eliminates certain standards, one of which participating schools must achieve — either that 70 percent of voucher students advance one grade level, 80 percent demonstrate significant academic progress, average attendance rates among participants of 90 percent or 70 percent of voucher parents meet participation goals.
The bill, approved 28-5, also requires participating schools to conduct employee background checks and strengthens financial accountability measures. The Department of Public Instruction and school voucher advocates support the changes, some of which were proposed in State Superintendent Tony Evers’ budget proposal.
The bill also expands eligibility requirements by allowing students who previously attended public school out of state or were on a voucher program waiting list to participate in future years.