May 7, 2009

Mason, 33 other legislators, ask Obama's help
in keeping Kenosha Chrysler plant open

State Rep. Cory Mason, D-Racine, along with a bipartisan group of thirty-three other Wisconsin legislators, today sent a letter to President Barack Obama expressing concerns about Chrysler’s restructuring plan that would close Kenosha’s engine plant and move operations to Saltillo, Mexico.

"We strongly oppose the inclusion of the Kenosha Engine Plant on Chrysler's list of plants slated for closure," the letter says, "and call on you to act quickly and deliberately to work with Chrysler and Fiat to amend the current bankruptcy plan to ensure that this plant can remain open as part of the company's ongoing operations."

In their letter to the President, legislators praise the union workers who for decades have made "immeasurable" contributions to the Kenosha community and to the automotive industry.

Legislators who signed the letter included Sen. John Lehman, D-Racine; Rep. Bob Turner, D-Racine; Rep. Robin Vos, R-Racine; Rep. Peter Barca, D-Kenosha; and Sen. Bob Wirch, D-Kenosha.

As part of federal bailout efforts, Chrysler is receiving $12 billion in loans to help the company survive the economic downturn.

“It is an outrage that Chrysler, using taxpayer dollars to stay afloat, would turn its back on the Kenosha plant and its employees in favor of operations in Mexico,” said Rep. Mason. “My legislative colleagues and I are calling upon President Obama to use his influence to work with Chrysler to amend the company’s current bankruptcy plan to keep the Kenosha facility open.”

“The hardworking, dedicated union employees at the Kenosha facility have already made concessions so that this plant could continue to produce high-quality engines for Chrysler. It is time for Chrysler to hold up its end of the bargain to these workers and to American taxpayers, and ensure that this plant remains open,” he said.


  1. Has top Union Leadership failed its constituents (who have been shelling out dues for all these years)?

  2. It is time for Chrysler to hold up its end of the bargain to these workers and to American taxpayers, and ensure that this plant remains open,” he said.

    Chrysler is only doing what the owner Obama said to do. Wait will not the UAW own the company after bankruptcy?

  3. Unfortunately the plan is to shutter the plant along with those in Missouri, Michigan and Ohio. The story in each state is just the same as heard in Wisconsin - “we were mislead, we are appalled, it’s un-American and on and on and on. Chrysler is bleeding financially - and that’s the name of the game. If only someone was buying the autos that the company sold, plant closings would not be on the table. If the autos were competitively profitable, plant closings would not be on the table, but high union costs will never reduce the gap!

    Thank you UAW!

  4. I feel very bad about what is happening in Kenosha. Interesting that Lehman and Mason have asked for help but not a peep from either about their "compromise" on KRM.

    I for one would like to hear their side of the story. I shall begin holding my breath now.