Sep 2, 2014

Wisconsin GOP Nominee Is Pro-Mine in GTac District, Silent about Scott Walker-GTac Scandal

Pro-environment forces fight
against Republicans, secret
money, vandals and GOP determination
to desecrate pristine waters
"There’s not going to be any (economic) opportunity that I can see in the near future other than this [Gogebic Taconite (GTac)] mine," said Jamey Francis, an apparel salesman and city councilman in the town of Hurley. "This is an economic game changer." (Adam Schrager, Quest: The Science of Sustainability)

Meet Jamey Francis, the GOP nominee for the 74th assembly district in northern Wisconsin and alderman for the City of Hurley in Iron County, who thinks obliterating the pristine region of incredible natural beauty is a "game changer" to be pursued in the name of "economic development."

Now-a-days, Francis is silent about the proposed GTac mine, omitting mention of the GTac mine on his campaign site, and listing vague platitudes instead as his "priorities."

He'll face Beth Meyers, the Democratic Party nominee and Bayfield County Board Supervisor.

Beth Meyers is profoundly against the proposed GTac mine that would slash a 1,000-foot-deep, miles-long open pit iron ore mine into the unscathed Penokee Hills region and befoul the pristine waters of Iron and Ashland counties in the 74th assembly district.

The Bayfield County Board passed an anti-mining resolution (With, Wisconsin Citizens Media Coop) in January 2013 by an 11-to-one margin. unalterably opposed to the mining legislation on which GTac lobbied and lavishly spent money as its PR flacks told Wisconsin that GTac was mostly concerned about full employment and a clean environment, (Bergquist, Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel).

This mining company lie about more jobs is knocked down regularly at the Stella Report from Iron County: "The real joke is that GTac claimed it needed its 200-or-so-page mining bill to speed things up. In fact, they said that was the only reason for the new law. They claimed they couldn't wait more than 300 days for the state to act. They convinced people it was necessary for JOBS NOW. Some poor kids are going to school to prepare for a job that won't be there when they get out," notes Stella.

Wisconsin's 74th Assembly District
Francis doesn't have much of an imagination for economic innovation, or much of an inclination to check out the Penokee Hills Education Project, or any curiosity about the secret $700,000 Scott Walker finagled for his allies from GTac. (Oshkosh Northwestern)

All Francis has to do is have a look at the Iron County website touting the region's environment as a tourism and recreation attraction: "Iron County is a place of incredible natural beauty. With 300 pristine lakes encompassing 34,000 acres of pure water, the only thing that could make it better is Lake Superior coastline. Good thing Iron County has that, too. Come and enjoy an amazing waterfall, or take a long walk on the beautiful sandy beaches of Saxon Harbor."

From Hurley in Iron County, Francis could make a trip to Lake Superior faster than a five-mile commute on the Madison Beltline during rush hour.

Jamey Francis doesn't read much either.

From the New York Times:
Last year, Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin and the Republican-controlled State Legislature approved the world’s largest open-pit iron ore mine, a gash in the northern part of the state that could be as long as 21 miles, a half-mile wide and 1,000 feet deep.

The mine legislation was bad enough from an environmental point of view: It allows the operator to fill streams with mine waste, eliminates public hearings and reduces the taxes the operator would have to pay.

It turns out to be even more shocking from an ethical viewpoint. Newly released documents show that the mine operator, Gogebic Taconite, secretly gave $700,000 to a political group that was helping the governor win a 2012 recall election. Mr. Walker had urged big corporations to give unlimited amounts, without fear of public disclosure, and many companies that wanted favors from the state happily obliged. Once the recall failed, the favors began to flow, even at the expense of the state’s natural resources.
Jamey Francis doesn't have to read; today's Wisconsin's Republicans just need to do what they're told by the people who bankroll the GOP.

"When some think-tank comes up with the legislation and tells you not to fool with it, why are you even a legislator anymore? You just sit there and take votes and you're kind of a feudal serf for folks with a lot of money," said retiring Dale Schultz (R-Richland Center). (Craver, The Capital Times)

This means destroying Wisconsin's natural resources in exchange for money the Koch brothers, GTac and other special interests lavish Wisconsin Republicans like the some $15-million for the mining legislation GTac wrote.

GTac and billionaires secretly poured a lot more money into the coffers of Wisconsin Republicans, after which Scott Walker asked for more.

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