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Vos: Gov. Evers broke campaign promises, killed negotiations with education funding change

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(The Center Square) – It doesn’t sound like Republicans at the Wisconsin Capitol are going to trust Gov. Tony Evers anytime soon.

Assembly Speaker Robin Vos told News Talk 1130 WISN’s Jay Weber Thursday that the governor broke his word when he excised a few words and numbers to create a 400-year education funding increase.

“He ran for office promising, and obviously taking credit for, the tax cut that we passed which focused on the exact same tax rate that he is now criticizing and vetoing the tax cut for. He really is just a hypocrite,” Vos said. “He clearly could have signed the tax cut for the broad middle bracket and maybe not signed the one for the upper income bracket, which I think we still should do. But he could have done that and at least kept his promise. But instead he’s just breaking his word.”

Vos said the governor’s decision hints that Evers will not run for a third term.

Vos insists that Republicans didn’t get “taken” in the new state budget, saying Republicans were able to negotiate the largest increase in school choice funding since the program was created back in 1990.

But Vos did admit that Democrats, including Gov. Evers and Milwaukee leaders, are turning their backs on the overall budget agreements.

“We negotiated in good faith, and now the city of Milwaukee is saying they are going to sue us. Or we negotiated in good faith on school spending, and Gov. Evers is going to use an unprecedented, brand new way to screw the taxpayers by using this line-item veto authority that was never imagined by a previous governor and certainly wouldn’t be by anybody who thinks there’s a fair process in Wisconsin,” Vos added. “If you want to do it, there is a negotiation that each side gives and takes. We are never going to raise taxes, and the only way he could do it was kind of by trickery.”

It remains to be seen if Evers has the power to make the changes that he made.

“We passed a constitutional amendment several years ago, getting rid of what was called the ‘Vanna White veto,’ where a governor had the ability to slash out individual letters, forming new words. So that is currently the law in Wisconsin, that you can’t form new words,” Vos explained. “He used his creative veto to eliminate the dashes. So it made it longer than 23-24, it made it 2345. That’s something that’s never been done in Wisconsin before. It clearly wasn’t the intent of anyone in the legislature to have a property tax increase for 400 years.”

Vos said “perhaps” someone will sue, but he also questioned whether the upcoming liberal majority Wisconsin Supreme Court will strike down the governor’s veto as too broad, or beyond the scope of his powers.

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