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“Scott Walker: Wisconsin’s agricultural, manufacturing jobs would be ‘devastated’ under Biden leadership”

Summary:
That’s title of a FoxNews article. Like all things emanating from the former governor, you have to look at the data to assess. Let’s consider first agriculture under Walker. Figure 1: Number of farms in Wisconsin as of June of each year (blue line). Orange shading denotes Walker administrations. Source: USDA. As for manufacturing, well output typically rises, so it’s useful to compare against other states Wisconsin’s performance. I’ll compare against what Walker used to disparage — Minnesota (a graphic from a December 2017 post on the Manufacturing and Agriculture Credit). Figure 2: Log real manufacturing output in Minnesota (blue) and in Wisconsin (red), normalized to 2011Q1=0. NBER defined recession dates shaded gray. Vertical dashed line at 2013Q1 indicates beginning of Wisconsin

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That’s title of a FoxNews article. Like all things emanating from the former governor, you have to look at the data to assess. Let’s consider first agriculture under Walker.

Figure 1: Number of farms in Wisconsin as of June of each year (blue line). Orange shading denotes Walker administrations. Source: USDA.

As for manufacturing, well output typically rises, so it’s useful to compare against other states Wisconsin’s performance. I’ll compare against what Walker used to disparage — Minnesota (a graphic from a December 2017 post on the Manufacturing and Agriculture Credit).

“Scott Walker: Wisconsin’s agricultural, manufacturing jobs would be ‘devastated’ under Biden leadership”

Figure 2: Log real manufacturing output in Minnesota (blue) and in Wisconsin (red), normalized to 2011Q1=0. NBER defined recession dates shaded gray. Vertical dashed line at 2013Q1 indicates beginning of Wisconsin Manufacturing and Agriculture Credit (MAC). Source: BEA, accessed 12/3/2017, NBER, and author’s calculations.

In my view, Walker did a pretty good job devastating Wisconsin already…

Update, 9/8, 1:20pm Pacific:

“Scott Walker: Wisconsin’s agricultural, manufacturing jobs would be ‘devastated’ under Biden leadership”

Figure 3: Log real manufacturing output in Minnesota (blue) and in Wisconsin (red), and US (black) normalized to 2011Q1=0. Light orange shading denotes Walker and Dayton administrations. Vertical dashed line at 2013Q1 indicates beginning of Wisconsin Manufacturing and Agriculture Credit (MAC). Source: BEA, accessed 9/8/2020 and author’s calculations.

Menzie Chinn
He is Professor of Public Affairs and Economics at the University of Wisconsin, Madison

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