Scott Walker’s Gimmicks
Scott Walker refused to accept federal stimulus money before he started to take it. Recovery Act funds paid for unemployment aid for 125,000 families dealing with job loss, health care coverage for 245,000 low-income children and families, and food assistance for over 175,000 low-income adults and children. Walker would have shortchanged Wisconsin families over $8 billion in aid to boost our economy and help families get through this recession.
Scott Walker’s campaign has centered on a “brown bag” theme that was actually borrowed from a 1998 U.S. Senate campaign in Ohio. Walker has trotted out a number of proposals throughout his campaign for governor that defy common sense and are little more than gimmicks.
Even though the state is facing a $2.5 billion budget deficit, he has promised to give out over $2 billion (and counting) in tax cuts that overwhelmingly benefit the rich and big businesses. That’s $4 billion in state spending that he’swill have to cut, such as education, local police and fire services, health care and higher education spending. On top of that, he wants to shift another $1 billion out of the state budget — and still won’t say how he will pay for it.
He claims he will create “250,000 jobs” in Wisconsin, which if done would essentially reduce the unemployment rate to zero. The lowest recorded unemployment rate in recent Wisconsin history is 2.4 percent in 1999.
Despite the fact that he’s been on the public payroll since the early 1990's and his state and county pension benefits have been paid in full by taxpayers. He has claimed he will begin paying part of his pension benefits if elected governor and will make all state employees do the same, saving around $180 million — just another $5.3 billion to go. Walker has implied he can pay for his tax cuts and balance the budget by cutting state worker pay and benefits. To raise $5 billion, he would need to cut state worker pay and benefits by over 50 percent, or slash 37,000 state jobs. That’s thousands of teachers, researchers from the University of Wisconsin, prison guards and state troopers who provide public safety, and health care workers who assist the elderly and people with disabilities.