Senate Democratic Leader Jennifer Shilling (D-La Crosse) released a statement in response to remarks made by Governor Scott Walker during his State of the State speech in Madison Tuesday.
“It's no secret, Wisconsin families are struggling and our middle class is shrinking. The majority of residents continue to say our state is headed in the wrong direction. It’s time for Republican politicians to take off the blinders and focus on helping working families – not just the wealthiest one percent.
“State cuts to local schools have driven up property taxes and shifted a greater burden onto homeowners. Health care costs continue to rise, and women in particular are finding it more difficult to access preventive care and family planning services. Our roads are ranked as some of the worst in the nation, and in too many communities, drinking water contaminated by lead pipes and manure runoff is more dangerous than in Flint, Michigan.
“For years, wages have declined, our middle class has shrunk and poverty in Wisconsin recently hit a 30 year high. We’ve trailed the national job creation average for 20 consecutive quarters. Meanwhile, the wealthiest one percent in our state continue to reap record profits at our expense.
“After years of struggles, I hope we can work together to lower property taxes, strengthen local schools and give Wisconsin children the best possible education by restoring the $1 billion in state aid cut by Republicans. I want to grow our economy from the ground up by raising wages, expanding access to paid sick leave and making child care more affordable for working families. And I am committed to jump starting small business development, investing in 21st century infrastructure by fixing our crumbling roads and bridges and targeting $100 million to expand and improve high-speed broadband internet access.
“These goals are all within our reach, but we need to find new ways to work together, invest in our communities and expand opportunities for everyone – not just the wealthiest one percent.”