Republicans reject oversight of Gov. Walker’s campaign travel
Move comes less than a week after limiting travel reimbursement for veterans
MADISON – A Democratic proposal to provide greater oversight and transparency of the state taxpayer costs associated with Gov. Walker’s national campaigning was rejected by Republicans on the Legislature’s budget-writing Joint Finance Committee along a party-line vote today. The proposal would have required quarterly reporting of taxpayer costs associated with Gov. Walker’s out-of-state travel.
The decision by Republicans to block this proposal and continue subsidizing the Governor’s campaign junkets comes less than a week after imposing a travel reimbursement limit for military veterans.
“For Republicans to limit the travel of distinguished veterans and then turn around and give Gov. Walker a blank check to campaign on the state taxpayers’ dime highlights the grossly misplaced priorities in this budget,” said Senate Democratic Leader Jennifer Shilling (D-La Crosse). “If Republicans have the money to continue subsidizing Gov. Walker’s international campaign junkets, then they should find a way to help military honor guards, disabled veterans and distinguished medal recipients attend state-sponsored events.”
As Gov. Walker increasingly leaves the state in pursuit of his presidential ambitions, costs for his travel have increased drastically. His six day trip to Great Britain cost taxpayers over $138,000 or roughly $23,000 per day.
“While Gov. Walker continues to jet around the country, families here in Wisconsin are left paying for his bills,” added Sen. Shilling. “With a $2.2 billion budget deficit, a lagging economy and a shrinking middle-class, it’s time for Republicans to re-evaluate their priorities. I hope that we can improve this budget and adopt the cost-effective, pro-growth initiatives being put forward by Democrats to strengthen our economy and lift up Wisconsin families.”
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Republican lawmakers on the budget-writing Joint Finance Committee rejected a Democratic proposal that would have prevented a $26 million funding raid.