Opposing view: Skip the outrage. We’re doing our job.
The first act of every elected official is to take the oath of office and swear to uphold the law. So it’s troubling that after being elected governor of Wisconsin, Tony Evers’ first promise was to undermine a state law that requires welfare recipients to work.
Even though he didn’t campaign on it, Mr. Evers wants to end the Medicaid work requirement. Wisconsin lawmakers put the parameters for the federal waiver in the 2015-17 state budget. It’s just one of the reasons the Wisconsin legislature went into an extraordinary session this week.
Every governor has to implement the state statutes and not just the ones they like. Mr. Evers can’t erase current law by the stroke of his pen or through political maneuverings. He must work to find common ground with the legislature, the branch that actually makes the laws.
The proposals in the extraordinary session are not as shocking as the news media portray them. A majority were already proposed, part of the state bud- get, administrative rules or state law that reflected a court decision or federal law. Wisconsin lawmakers codified the administrative rules for Voter ID, federal health waivers, an income tax rate reduction and workforce training grants. We even codified the current administrative rule process.
While Evers supporters and the media are in full outrage mode, it must be understood that Wisconsin chose divided government. The voters reelected a strong GOP majority in both legislative chambers, and we will continue to be a voice for our constituents.
The legislation from the session simply reinforces the roles of our state government. If Mr. Evers wants to change law, he can’t do it alone; he must get legislative approval first.
A divided government works only when people work together, and everyone must have an equal seat at the table. Wisconsin’s extraordinary session allows the table to be set for the next legislative session.