Monday, June 08, 2009

Unleash the talking points!

Wisconsin democrats are desperate to take back the debate on their budget that raises taxes on nearly everyone, diminishes public safety, increases spending, and does nothing to alter the state's long-term budget problems. They've distributed 3 1/2 pages of talking points. Unfortunately for them, the MacIver Institute managed to get a copy and has answered many of them.

The first thing that strikes us is the defensive nature of the document. It begins by pointing out that some other states are raising more taxes and cutting spending. Then it concludes by attempting to refute what they call GOP Myths about the secret deal.

So, 1) It's not as bad as it could have been and 2) It's not as bad as the opposition party says it is. One would think it would be rather hard to get 50 votes on Wednesday if those are your top two themes.

It is clear the Assembly Democrats had no idea their late night hijinks would be so thoroughly disdained by the public and the press, thus making caucus unity more elusive. Perhaps it is because they never thought the public would get an advance look at their proposal???

Whatever the case, these talking points are worth a read.

We did. Here are some of our thoughts.

"From the beginning of the budget process, state legislative leaders pledged to craft a budget that makes necessary cuts while minimizing negative impacts on working families and protecting key priorities in health care, education and public safety."

Will the new gas tax negatively impact working families? Even the JFC co-Chair thinks it might...

Will the Rube Goldberg RTA compromise that will cost Milwaukee families $228 a year negatively impact working families? One would think so...

Whether they admit it or not, there is a lot in here that negatively impacts working families.

Protecting education? Tell that to the more than 20,000 students in the School Choice program in Milwaukee. Clearly the secret budget deal will hurt that program and those families.

And...public safety? Are they serious? A cut of more than $17 million from the Department of Justice that jeopardizes the recent successful reduction in the crime lab backlog and will limit the Department of Criminal Investigation's ability to partner with resource-scrapped local law enforcement...

Funny the whole "Let's no longer monitor all these sexual predators with GPS devices" item didn't make their talking points...

Oh, and then there is that whole opening the prisons to let felons out early thing...

You should examine these talking points for yourself, but be forewarned, you may simultaneously be outraged, baffled and laugh hysterically.

Did we mention the Democrats are still looking for fifty votes? Oh yes, we did.