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Wonder Why Wisconsin Voters Grumble About Government?

September 2, 2019

Back in January, we were shoveling snow,  looking at seed catalogs in anticipation of spring blooms, and getting our paperwork in order for tax season.  Since then we have watched most of a baseball season pass, while the UW-Badgers kicked off another season.  Labor Day has passed and students are streaming back to classrooms around the state.

And yet what should have been one of the easiest actions of the Wisconsin State Legislature remains undone.

Another likely outcome of the legislative session is Senate confirmation of at least some of the less controversial of Evers’ cabinet secretaries. It’s been more than seven months since Evers took office, but so far none of his cabinet secretaries has received approval from the full chamber, though several have been recommended in committee. 

If voters from Mason to Orfordville need to have just one example of what is wrong with state government they need to look no further than the lack of confirming any of the selections Governor Tony Evers made for his cabinet.  If voters need to better grasp the meaning of the word partisanship, or see an example as to what denying election results are all about, they only need to ponder the last seven months.

There is no need for the partisan heat when it comes to any of the names placed before the state senate.  Minus moral, ethical, or legal reasons a nominee submitted by a governor should not face the dragging of time which has taken place.  The process should not be treated as a political football.   And yet it is.

Barring any legitimate reasons, there is no basis to not confirm.  Having policy views that do not square with the opposition party is not cause to deny placing a secretary in an office.  The election of 2018 was the only hurdle that a gubernatorial candidate needed to cross.  Once elected the executive branch has the right to a cabinet of their choosing.

We all can understand how Republicans feel by not securing the governor’s office.  But as parents would advise youngsters when things do not go the desired way such times call for biting one’s tongue and fighting back the first instincts.  The GOP Senate caucus would look far more professional if they worked at lowering the temperature of polarizing politics that has fastened itself to these nominations.

I often comment on the process of governing.  I know it is not a sexy topic.  But when it goes awry it looks mighty bad.  To have more than half-a-year elapse and not have votes taken so the state government can fully operate is just unacceptable.  Regardless of partisan views, we all must make sure the process of governing is allowed to function.

Should we place bets if this legislative work is done by the time of the World Series?

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