In Case You Missed It: The ‘Two Tim Michelses’ 

August 4, 2022

In Case You Missed It: The ‘Two Tim Michelses’ 


[Waukesha, Wis.] — In case you missed it, Tim Michels’ record on the Keystone XL Pipeline doesn’t match up with his new position now that he’s running for governor, according to a story from the Milwaukee Business Journal that was uncovered in a column by Dan Bice in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. After more than one flip-flop in the waning days of this campaign, it’s clear that you can’t trust Tim. 


Read excerpts of Bice’s story below or read the full story here.


Republican gubernatorial candidate Tim Michels appears to be of two minds about the Keystone XL Pipeline

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Daniel Bice


We have, it turns out, not one but two Tim Michelses.


The first Tim Michels was the low-key co-owner of Michels Corp. and head of trade groups for the road-building industry even as they staked out less-than-conservative positions on gas tax increases, right to work and undocumented immigrants.


Then there’s the Tim Michels who is running as a Republican for governor — or, as he might call him, Tim Michels 2.0. This one leans hard to the right. He opposes gas tax hikes, supports right to work and vows no public benefits for “illegals.”



The one running for governor is outraged that President Joe Biden canceled the construction permit for the pipeline in January 2021.


Michels Corp. was awarded a contract to build eight pump stations in the United States for the pipeline. It had another contract to build around half of the Canadian portion of the pipeline.


“My company was building the Keystone Pipeline, but then Joe Biden canceled it, afraid to offend liberals,” says a Michels ad. “Biden killed hundreds of jobs, sent gas prices way up, making everything more expensive.”


On the stump, Michels regularly says he had to fire 700 workers — albeit most of them temporary — after Biden shut down the Keystone project: “The night Joe Biden was dancing at his Inaugural Ball, we were laying off 700 workers.”


Just what you’d expect Michels 2.0 to say.



But where was Michels on the pipeline just 2½ years ago?


In a September 2019 interview with the Milwaukee Business Journal, Michels seemed much less concerned about what his company would do if Democrat Sen. Elizabeth Warren — or someone like her — were elected. He suggested Michels Corp. would simply shift its focus from pipelines to renewable energy.


Here is his entire quote:


“There’s an election about 14 months from now. We’re not sure what’s going to happen after that. We have the ability to shift from doing a lot of pipeline work to doing renewables.


“We’ve built over 4,000 megawatts of renewable energy as well, wind farms, solar farms. If Elizabeth Warren becomes president, pipeline will probably, certainly, slow down. We’re aware of that, but renewables and things like light rail, public transportation would pick up.


“It’s my two brothers and me on our board, we can make big decisions like that, and we would shift to whatever the market is offering very quickly.”


Much more nonchalant and accommodating than the current version of Michels, huh?


Read the full story here.

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