Evers’ state of the state address was all about big spending.
Republican leaders slammed the massive spending proposals from Gov. Tony Evers’ in Tuesday’s State of the State address, noting Evers’ failure to address public safety, inflation and other topics.
Evers proposed more than $1 billion in new spending in the address, much of it focusing on mental health (including helping students with mental health issues caused by decisions he advocated to keep them out of school for so long).
List of new spending includes:
*$500 million for mental health
*$390 million for child care, expand Child and Dependent Care Credit
*$100 million address PFAS
*$100 million for the Workforce Innovation Grant program
*$50 million boost health care workforce
— JR Ross (@jrrosswrites) January 25, 2023
“Governor Evers failed to propose any significant solutions to Wisconsin’s most pressing issues like inflation, rampant crime, workforce shortages, and struggling schools,” Wisconsin GOP Chairman Brian Schimming said.
Looks like the ‘Education Governor’ fell asleep in class…@GovEvers’ self-proclaimed title doesn’t relieve him of his responsibility to listen to those who know WI children better than anyone: parents. #WISOTS pic.twitter.com/5V1kCm4lfe
— Wisconsin GOP (@wisgop) January 25, 2023
“Evers’ speech was about throwing money at problems when most Wisconsinites are hoping for real solutions and tired of excessive spending.”
“Pretty much everything he proposed today was a government expansion. So I would assume that most of those are DOA,” Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, R-Rochester, told reporters.
“We already have a government that’s too big and too expensive. In Wisconsin, I want to reduce the size of that so people can help deal with the inflationary costs brought on by the pandemic and the response to it. But if he has good ideas, I’m happy to listen.”
“For the 2nd straight year, Gov. Evers exercised his right to remain silent and failed to meaningfully address the issue of violent crime,” state Sen. Pat Testin tweeted. “With MKE seeing a record number of homicides in ’22, it’s past time for the Gov. to take this issue seriously. We need meaningful bail reform.”
“Sadly, Gov Evers hasn’t done what’s best for our kids but for the teachers unions, presiding over a precipitous academic slide in our state. Our kids deserve better with full #EdFreedom. #WISOTS #SOTSWI,” tweeted Rep. Barb Dittrich.
Here are some other Republican responses to Gov. Tony Evers’ State of the State address.
State Sen. Van H. Wanggaard
“Not one word of Governor Evers’ State of the State address was spent on the top issue facing Wisconsin families – inflation. Not a single, solitary word. And, although he used the words ‘public safety,’ he had absolutely no game plan addressing the people too scared of crime to leave their homes. None.
I do appreciate Evers’ newfound interest in mental health however, and his recognition that his mandatory school closings caused a literacy and mental health crisis. Unfortunately, it took him two years to notice the damage he inflicted on our school children.
In the end, his speech took credit for ideas he had nothing to do with, and contained nothing more than spending $1.2 billion in liberal spending ideas, bigger government, and little in the way of details. Just like every other speech he’s given.”
State Sen. Duey Stroebel
“At the beginning of his speech, Governor Evers said no one wants to make government bigger. Shortly thereafter, he must have forgotten that statement because for nearly an hour after, Evers rattled off a litany of ways he would grow government. At every turn, he finds new ways to spend the hard earned resources of Wisconsin taxpayers. It is the ‘Madison knows best’ mentality on steroids.
Since Evers is short on accomplishments of his own to tout, he unsurprisingly resorted to claiming credit for the last two state budgets crafted by legislative Republicans. Had the legislature agreed to the litany of spending items proposed by the Governor over the past four years, there would be no historic budget surplus and rainy day fund balance to speak of.
It is worth noting that Evers failed to mention that the Legislature was able to craft a budget that significantly increased local road funding without raising the state’s gas tax, a provision which Evers included in his last budget proposal. In response to Evers comments on K-12 education, it is unfortunate that a large proportion of our schools are not performing at the levels they should be with the drastic investments in K-12 education. Instead of the left pushing their ‘woke’ agenda, students should be focusing on academic achievement.
While Evers repeatedly attempted to build himself up by knocking down his predecessor for so-called ‘disinvestments,’ it bears mentioning that many of the ‘investments’ Evers cited throughout his Address were only made possible by billions of dollars in one-time federal funds that he was able to dole out as he saw fit. Of course, the unprecedented deficit spending behind these federal funds has only served to exacerbate the rising costs that are straining the budgets of hard-working Wisconsin families and taxpayers.”
Wisconsin State Senator Eric Wimberger
“I am glad that after four years in office the Governor is finally able to celebrate the benefits that responsible budgets bring. As a new member of the budget committee, I am looking forward to helping turn another tax and spend wish list into a budget that delivers for taxpayers and all of Wisconsin.
I welcome the Governor’s sentiments on PFAS, but his words ring hollow as his administration continues to authorize spreading PFAS-laden biosolids at more than 100,000 parts per trillion on thousands of acres of farmland across Wisconsin. Plans to spend millions on cleaning up wells he is knowingly contaminating isn’t a plan and doesn’t solve our problems.”
Rep. Dave Murphy
“After hearing Governor Evers’ State of the State address, I wish I could say I could work with the Governor and agree with him on his agenda, but it will be difficult because so much of it is bad for Wisconsin. Instead, we need to focus on the day-to-day issues that matter to Wisconsinites.
First we all know education is important, but we can’t just keep spending money without expecting results. Schools can’t expect increased funding without expecting to show increased achievement. We’re all in favor of funding success, but when two-thirds of our kids can’t read at grade level that’s unacceptable.
Next we need to get a handle on the growing crime crisis in Wisconsin. Last week the State Assembly took a step in that direction. We passed a resolution that gives judges the tools they need to keep violent offenders behind bars and keep your families safe. The resolution would amend Wisconsin’s Constitution to give judges more discretion when they set bail. That resolution will be on the April ballot and, if you pass it, it will go into effect. This will allow you to pass common sense law and order reform without the Governor vetoing it.
Finally, we also passed a resolution that addresses welfare fraud and abuse. On the April ballot you will also see a referendum question that asks whether childless, able-bodied adults should be required to look for work in order to receive welfare benefits. There are literally thousands of open jobs in Wisconsin, and this will help move people off welfare and back into the workforce. It’s not right for hard-working Wisconsinites to pay benefits to people who are.”