Reality Check: Burke ad focuses on layoffs

Reality Check: Burke ad focuses on layoffs

Job creation continues to be the focus of ads from Democratic candidate for governor Mary Burke.

Her latest spot looks at layoffs, focusing on last month to make the case that jobs are leaving the state.

“July 2014,” the announcer says in the ad, followed by a montage of news clips.

“The Roundy’s-Copps distribution center is closing,” says one news anchor.

“Sealed Air Corps will be cutting 300 jobs as well,” says another anchor.

“Six hundred workers told today their jobs will be gone by the end of the week,” says another anchor.

News 3 finds this needs clarification. These three companies are laying off workers, but let’s give you the context to them leaving.

Roundy’s is cutting some 200 jobs near Stevens Point after a fallout from a sell-off of grocery stores in Minnesota. The Wisconsin distribution center supported those stores.

Sealed Air Corporation says 300 jobs will leave Sturtevant’s Diversey plant over the next three years, which is largely the result of North Carolina offering the company some $40 million in tax breaks to move jobs to its home state.

And in Milwaukee, Cargill is laying off 600 workers at its plant. They say it’s because of fewer beef cattle being harvested in Wisconsin.

While those circumstances are individual to each of those companies, Burke makes it seem as if it’s Gov. Scott Walker’s fault.

“Scott Walker promised 250,000 jobs, and instead Wisconsin fell to dead last in Midwest job growth, with over a thousand layoffs announced in July alone,” the announcer says in the ad.

News 3 finds this also needs clarification. As News 3 has noted before, Wisconsin is actually 11th of 12 states in the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ technical definition of the Midwest. Missouri’s job growth was lower over this period of time. It is true that 1,046 layoffs were announced in the state in July, but according to the BLS preliminary figures, 3,200 private sector jobs were created in July as well.

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