The official obit has not yet been written on Wisconsin's $810 train project, but the wake of circling vultures continues to grow.
Earlier this week, Arnold Schwarzenegger, California's Republican governor, joined a growing list of leaders across the country publicly requesting the rail funds that other states, including Wisconsin, plan to reject. In a letter Tuesday to U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, Schwarzenegger expressed shock that some of his "gubernatorial colleagues" were against high speed rail.
"You are more than welcome to redirect that money to California — where we know how to use it to generate hundreds of thousands of jobs and provide a clean, fast and low-cost way to travel," he wrote.
This comes after leaders in New York and Illinois have suggested rerouting the money to their states and LaHood seemed to hint that North Carolina could be in the running as well.
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Gov.-elect Scott Walker, a Republican, has made it clear he plans to kill the federally funded Madison-to-Milwaukee passenger train. The line would be a small part of what leaders in the Midwest hoped would become a regional system that stretched from Minneapolis to Chicago.
The Minnesota AFL-CIO on Wednesday publicly requested Walker reconsider his position on the project, which it contends would hurt not only Wisconsin, but the entire Midwest.
"If Wisconsin says no to this section of the line, it is likely Minnesota will not see any rail dollars in the future," the group said in a statement.
Earlier this week, three Republican members of Wisconsin's congressional delegation introduced a bill that would allow states to return money meant for train projects so it could be used to reduce the federal deficit.