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Walker backs off campaign jobs pledge at Merrill stopSubmitted: 08/26/2013
Ben Meyer
Ben Meyer
Managing Editor / Senior Reporter
bmeyer@wjfw.com

Walker backs off campaign jobs pledge at Merrill stop
MERRILL - Governor Walker promised Wisconsin 250,000 new jobs again and again while campaigning in 2010.

He said he'd accomplish that in his first term as governor.

But the latest Milwaukee Journal Sentinel report puts Walker less than a third of the way there.

He has less than a year and a half to create nearly 170,000 jobs to keep that pledge.

On Monday in Merrill, he carefully backed away from the specific number.

"My goal wasn't so much to hit a magic number as much as it was, in the four years before I took office, when I was campaigning, I saw that we lost over 133,000 jobs in the state. I said, 'it's really not about jobs, it's about real people, real jobs like those here, and more importantly, affecting real families all across the state,'" Walker said.

Walker was helping Northern Wire, a fastener manufacturer, celebrate its 40th year in business.

It bounced back from a 2011 tornado.

That storm tore through the area near the plant on Merrill's north side.

A year ago, an investment group from Indiana bought Northern Wire, helping to keep production in Merrill.

"They made a concerted effort both because they like the company, as well as the like the state. They like the workforce here and the way the state's headed. I think that's a good positive sign for us," Walker said.

Northern Wire employs as many as 190 people during its peak production periods.

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MINOCQUA -
You can help the Oneida County Dive Team by grabbing your goggles and swim cap Saturday (June 23) morning.

Swimmers will launch from Torpy Park for the Minocqua Island Swim Challenge.

The race is one mile long, but people can choose to swim just 400 meters, too.

The water temperature will be about 65 degrees during the race.

"A lot of people will wear wet suits and be very comfortable. I have seen plenty of people go without and have no trouble," says Laura Fuhrman.

Money raised from the race will go to Oneida County's dive team.

They are first responders to water rescue calls.

"We just got our dark vision gear last year through fundraisers like this. It helps us be more efficient and safe," says Assistant Dive Team Leader, Michael Fraley.

You still have time to register in person Friday night from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at Torpy Park.

Click below for more info.

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Bergen suffered shoulder and ankle wounds in the crash, but he had no paperwork about the injuries because he was immediately taken prisoner. Such documentation is needed for the medal that honors troops injured in combat.

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State Representative Dana Wachs, of Eau Claire, announced Friday that he is ending his campaign and endorsing Tony Evers.

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125 years ago the Sisters of the Sorrowful Mother began their work in Rhinelander.

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