GOP gubernatorial candidates would kill Madison-Milwaukee rail plan

Monday, May 10, 2010

From an article by Matthew DeFour in the Wisconsin State Journal:

Madison-to-Milwaukee Amtrak service is planned to begin in 2013, but a major junction in that process is coming in November.

Republican gubernatorial candidate and Milwaukee County executive Scott Walker immediately responded to Thursday's announcement about a Madison station location with a promise to derail the whole project.

"As governor, I will stop this misguided and wasteful project," Walker said. "Every announcement by Governor Doyle and (Milwaukee) Mayor (Tom) Barrett on their controversial train boondoggle further commits our state to their pet project that taxpayers literally cannot afford."

Walker's Republican opponent, small-business owner and former U.S. Rep. Mark Neumann, also voiced opposition to the train.

"In tough times we have to cut spending, not take on hugely expensive projects that analysis has shown are not self-sustainable," Neumann said. "It is that kind of thinking that has left Wisconsin with a huge deficit, rising taxes and fees, and wasteful spending across the board."

Phil Walzak, spokesman for Barrett, the Democratic candidate, said the reason Democrats and Republicans, including former Gov. Tommy Thompson, support the train is because it's about "construction jobs, manufacturing jobs and the economic corridor."

"Just saying ‘no' to everything is not going to move Wisconsin forward," Walzak said. "What Wisconsin needs is adult leadership that's going to create jobs."