MADISON, Wis. — Wisconsin Republican officials are responding to bipartisan overtures at the state and federal level by Democratic leaders by summarily rejecting efforts to create jobs, invest in infrastructure, reform health insurance and tackle the $5.4 billion deficit.
“Just weeks into 2009, the state’s leading Republicans have buried their heads in the sand to the economic crisis, job loss and skyrocketing health care costs,” said Scot Ross, One Wisconsin Now Executive Director. “Republicans are enthusiastically telling the people of Wisconsin: Yes, We Can’t!”
In just the last two weeks, GOP leaders have condemned numerous common sense proposals spearheaded by Democrats to close the state’s budget deficit and reduce the economic suffering of middle class families and those falling behind.
Assembly Minority Leader Jeff Fitzgerald (R-Horicon) was roundly criticized when just before the new year, he said of the $5.4 billion budget crisis: “I don’t have to solve that problem. Obviously, that’s the Democrats’ problem.”
Republican Scott Walker, Milwaukee County Executive has publicly refused to take federal stimulus money for Milwaukee, despite the fact his narrow partisanship has decimated the county’s infrastructure and ability to deliver basic human services. (1/6/09)
Senate Minority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R-Juneau) again rejected calls to provide the people of Wisconsin with the same health care Fitzgerald, his legislative colleagues and their entire families receive for a cost of just $2 a day. (1/7/09)
Rep. Robin Vos (R-Racine), GOP leader of the budget-writing Joint Finance Committee, ripped a call to index the minimum wage to inflation, require companies that fail to pay worker wages before the banks and guarantee big insurance companies cover autism treatment for children. (1/9/09)
Rep. Rich Zipperer (R-Pewaukee) blasted state Democratic job creation efforts which would increase the amount of in-state business government contract with and ensure state contracts are performed by U.S. companies.
“These Republicans all have jobs, they all have taxpayer-financed health care and they don’t have to worry about getting stiffed on their wages if their employer goes belly-up,” said Ross. “Wisconsinites have affirmatively called for an end to the old partisan-politics-as-usual, but state Republicans have chosen again to ignore this call.”