Who didn’t see this coming? The massive Foxconn factory touted by Donald Trump and former Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker isn’t going to be a factory, after all. “In Wisconsin we’re not building a factory. You can’t use a factory to view our Wisconsin investment,” a Foxconn executive told reporters.
Foxconn was supposedly going to build a $10 billion factory—in exchange for $3 billion in tax breaks, big enough that Wisconsin would not have made money off it until 2042—to manufacture liquid crystal display panels. The initial claim was that the factory would create 13,000 jobs, with 5,200 hires by the end of 2020. Instead, the Taiwanese company is shifting its plan to a research and development facility that will employ more like 1,000 people by the end of 2020.
The Foxconn deal was so important to Trump that he announced it from the East Room of the White House, bragging that he had personally negotiated the deal. Meanwhile, realists pointed out that Foxconn had already walked away from much smaller job creation promises in Pennsylvania. So it was then, and so it is again.
So much for all the great things Donald Trump was going to do for American workers.