Following Wednesday's State of the State speech by Governor Walker, Senate Democratic Leader Jennifer Shilling of La Crosse made the following comments.
“Despite Governor Walker’s frantic attempts to improve his public approval ratings in a tough election year, Wisconsin residents will not be fooled. This election year enlightenment has shown that he has failed to deliver on his empty promises of the past and his misguided priorities have taken the state in the wrong direction.
“Every time we drive over a pothole or cast a ballot for a school referendum, voters see the underfunding of our roads and local schools. As other states have rebounded from the Great Recession, Republican policies have shrunk Wisconsin’s middle class, shifted more costs onto working families and created an 111,000 jobs deficit.
“State cuts to local schools have driven up property taxes and shifted a greater burden onto homeowners. Health care costs continue to rise, and people with pre-existing conditions are at risk of losing coverage through no fault of their own. Our roads are ranked as some of the worst in the nation, and too many communities are going back to graveled roads.
“Under Republican leadership, wages remain stagnant, jobs have been outsourced and workers’ rights have been stripped away. Rather than growing our middle class and investing in Wisconsin jobs, Gov. Walker continues to prioritize tax breaks for the wealthy and $4.5 billion in taxpayer subsidies to a foreign corporation, the largest in U.S. history.
“Democrats have listened to the families that are burdened with student loan debt, sky-rocketing childcare costs, and costly auto repairs from crumbling roads. By focusing on policies that promote fairness, expand opportunities, and invest in communities, Democrats want to make Wisconsin a place where the next generation wants to live, work, and raise a family.
“These are the issues that families and seniors have said they want their leaders to focus on. People want to solve these challenges, and tackle the tough issues. Legislative Democrats believe in the Wisconsin Way Forward and the promise of a better tomorrow.”