Wisconsin at a Crossroads

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Air Date: May 2, 2012

Host: Vic Eliason

Guest: Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker

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This Crosstalk featured Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker who for the past year has been under fire for implementing a number of reforms in an effort to balance the state budget while at the same time improving employment opportunities for citizens that are eligible to work.

Governor Walker noted that when he took office, the fiscal shape of Wisconsin was as bad as it’s ever been in its history. In fact, his administration inherited a 3.6 billion dollar budget deficit.

Rather than raise taxes like some states, Governor Walker lowered property taxes, something that hadn’t been done in 12 years. He avoided massive layoffs of government employees as was done in Illinois. Along with this, rather than cutting programs like Medicaid, he added money to it along with money to help fund programs such as Badger Care.

Governor Walker also cited Chief Executive Magazine that each year runs a survey of employers around the nation to find out what states provide the best and the worst business climate for creating jobs. According to this magazine, last year Wisconsin moved up in the rankings faster than any state in the country moving from #41 to #24. This year Wisconsin is at #20. This is one of the most dynamic turnarounds in the country.

In spite of all this, Walker’s critics say he’s balanced the budget on the backs of state workers, that schools are in a fiscal crisis because of a reduction of 1.6 billion dollars from education and that he’s initiated a war on women. How does he answer such critics? Get the answers to these concerns, his views regarding the sanctity of life and much more when you review this edition of Crosstalk.

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