Scott Walker will sign special session bills

Will Gov. Walker veto the “power grab” legislation enacted last week by the Republican legislature. No. That was never going to happen.

We said that the optics of that legislation was horrible. The national liberal news media got way out ahead of the Republicans with accusations of “anti-democratic power grab,” “lame duck” and other epithets. What else is new?

For what it’s worth, here is Scott Walker’s response today (only slightly abridged). (And he really IS a lame duck, given that Republicans will control the legislature for the next two years.)

From Gov. Scott Walker:

There has been a great deal of attention given to the items passed by members of the state Legislature during their extraordinary session last week. … While I did not ask lawmakers to consider anything other than the bill to save Kimberly-Clark jobs, I am reviewing the bills passed by the state Assembly and Senate.  There’s a great deal of misinformation being put out on these bills.

Let’s set the record straight – the new governor will still have some of the strongest powers of any governor in the nation if these bills become law. He will have the power to veto legislation and he will have some of the broadest line-item veto authority of any governor in the nation.

The new governor will be able to appoint the members of his cabinet and of various other state government posts – as well as judges, district attorneys, sheriffs and other officials.

The new governor will be able to sign off on administrative rules. He will be able to present a biennial state budget. He will be able to pardon convicted felons.

None of these things will change regardless of what I do with the bills passed in the state Legislature last week.

Here are my straightforward criteria for reviewing the legislation:

Does it improve transparency?  Will it make it easier for people to know what is going on in their government? For example, one of the bills calls for a report on people who receive a pardon by the Governor.  It seems reasonable that the public should know if a convicted felon is pardoned of his or her crime.

Does it increase accountability?  Will it continue to put checks and balances in place to ensure that state government is accountable to the hard-working people of Wisconsin? For example, it makes sense that lawmakers should have some say in how the state might spend a multi-million legal settlement. [ * See my note later.]

Does it affirm stability?  Will reasonable agreements between the executive and legislative branches continue as well as items that are common practice? For example, we worked with members of the Legislature before we sought waivers from the federal government so that the legislative branch would not be at odds with us after we received approvals. It makes sense to codify this in the statues so it continues in the future.

Does it protect the taxpayers?  Will it help ensure that those in government are good stewards of the taxpayers’ resources? For example, a federal court ruled that purchases made on the Internet are subject to the same sales taxes made on purchases in a state.  A law enacted years ago says that if new revenues come in from a change at the federal level, those revenues must go to lowering the burden on the hard-working taxpayers in Wisconsin.  It makes sense to ensure that this provision applies the same to a change made in federal court as it does to an act of Congress.

These are the reasonable criteria we will use to review the legislation passed during the extraordinary session.

As Politifact mentioned on Sunday, I sent a letter to Governor Jim Doyle in November 2010 asking for the following:

“Don’t finalize any permanent civil service personnel because these appointees ‘should be required to go through the same application process as any other civil servants.’”

Here are the facts about the extraordinary session last week:

The members of the state Senate confirmed 82 appointments last week. Of the 82, 78 were submitted to the Senate months ago. Three of the names were just submitted recently because of resignations (for example, Bryan Steil resigned from the University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents after his election to Congress).

In my letter to Governor Doyle in 2010, I wrote about civil service positions.  None of the 82 positions confirmed by the state Senate last week were civil service positions.

I also asked Governor Doyle to suspend state employee contract negotiations so that they might be considered in the context of the 2011-2013 state budget. Soon after that letter, lawmakers – who had lost the majority – voted during a lame-duck session on state employees contracts that would bind the state for years. Thankfully, two Senate Democrats voted against the contracts and they failed to pass.

In contrast, current lawmakers – who maintained the majority – voted during an extraordinary session on items that can be changed anytime during the next four years. Changes would have to be approved by a majority in the state Legislature and signed by the Governor.

While Governor Doyle ignored my request and tried to rush through employee contracts, I ordered my administration to stop Requests for Proposals (RFPs) before issuing contracts so the new administration could start over with the process.

These are the facts and it is clear Politifact did not consider them when making their determination.

The bottom-line is that we are working with Governor-elect Tony Evers to make sure that he has a good transition. The leaders of our state agencies have stopped the process of starting new contracts, they notified staff not to move to at-will positions and they are providing overviews of the work done by their agencies. …

Sincerely,

governor scott walker signature

* My note: Past attorneys general of the Democrat(ic) persuasion, such as Peg Lautenschlager (late mother of the new A.G.-elect), would bring lawsuits, settle by demanding voluntary payments, then donate that money to the Left-liberal cause du jour. 

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About David Blaska

Madison WI
This entry was posted in Scott Walker, Tony Evers and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Scott Walker will sign special session bills

  1. Gary L. Kriewald says:

    Optics, shmoptics. What this boils down to is whether we want Wisconsin’s governors (and other statewide officials) to be elected by the state as a whole or by the machinations of Democrats in Milwaukee and Dane counties. Restricting early voting to 2 weeks before the election is a perfectly reasonable proposal. (If you can’t manage to vote within that time period, then you’d better take a course in time management.) Dane County can afford to keep polls open for an inordinately long period of time while most other counties can’t; it can spend unlimited resources to “get out the vote,” which in Dane County means get out the Democrat vote, while other counties can’t. Restricting early voting will help level the playing field. And frankly, anything that the Republican legislature can do to prevent the return of the Doyle era under another guise is fine with me–and if Dane County doesn’t like ti, so much the better.

    Liked by 1 person

    • richard lesiak says:

      We Dem’s worked very hard to get people to vote all over the state. !. We don’t fill out their ballots for them. 2. If it wasn’t for gerrymandering the Dem’s would have cleaned your clock a lot worse than you saw. Hard work does pay off.

      Like

      • Gary L. Kriewald says:

        All over the state? Really? Then why do election maps show two big blue blobs in Milwaukee and Dane Counties amid a sea of red?

        Like

      • Cornelius Gotchberg says:

        @richard lesiak;

        “We Dem’s worked very hard to get people to vote all over the state. !. (sic)”

        And you’s did it without Scottie Foval busing fraudulent voters in or Bobby Creamer having Hopey Changey’s ear.

        Or did you’s…?

        The Gotch

        Like

        • richard lesiak says:

          Yes; we did it without any of that. Are you hinting at voter fraud? If so contact the election board. Maybe the RNC should have sent Dowless to help walker. Am I right?

          Like

  2. old baldy says:

    Last I heard the entire state got to vote. If R’s were too lazy or unmotivated or fed up with walker to get out, that is on them. Or maybe they will introduce a bill to reduce the D vote count in Madison and Milwaukee> Oh, silly me, they already did that.
    The hypocrisy of fitzvoswalker is that they spent the last 7+ years concentrating power in their favor. Now when they lose the governor and AG they just show the inevitable and expected case of poor-loserism.

    Like

  3. madisonexpat says:

    Why, its almost like Politifact and the rest of the bedwetters were all wrong in their reporting. Its like fake news.

    Like

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