VIDEO: WI Gov. Scott Walker Admits that Stripping Collective Bargaining Rights of Workers “Not a Fiscal Issue”, Does Not Save Taxpayers “Any” Money

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This is a press release from Dennis Kucinich's site:

Washington D.C. (April 14, 2011) – Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) today scored an admission from Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker that his decision to strip the rights of public workers to bargain collectively “doesn’t save any” money for the Wisconsin taxpayers.

“Your proposal would require unions to hold annual votes to continue representing their own members. Can you please explain to me and members of this committee how much money this provision saves for your state budget?” question Kucinich.

After an unresponsive answer by Governor Walker, Kucinich pressed, “Did you answer the questions? How much money does it save, Governor?”

“It doesn’t save any,” admitted Governor Walker.

Kucinich then requested permission to enter into the record a letter from the State of Wisconsin’s Legislative Fiscal Bureau (page 3 specifically), a nonpartisan state budget agency that confirmed Governor Walker’s efforts had no effect on the state’s budget.

“The Bureau was asked to identify provisions in the Governor’s bill that are non-fiscal; non-fiscal policy items that have no state fiscal effect. This letter confirms the obvious; that Governor Walker’s effort to repeal the rights of state workers is a non-fiscal policy item. No effect on the state budget shortfall,” said Kucinich.

The Chairman of the Committee then took the highly unusual step of reserving the right to object to the document’s the inclusion in the record.

Kucinich concluded by thanking Governor Walker for clarifying the purpose of his attack on workers’ rights.

“The attack on collective bargaining right is a choice, not a budget issue.  ...Governor Walker has inadvertently done a public service …and brought this issue to the forefront.”

After the hearing, Kucinich referred to the letter from the Legislative Fiscal Bureau. “My good friend, Chairman Issa, inadvertently exposed the limitations of his key witness, Governor Walker, by refusing to permit into evidence a document that demonstrated that collective bargaining was a non-fiscal issue. Chairman Issa called attention to it and ensured it would get much broader circulation, for which I am very appreciative.

I look forward to Walker's recall.

H/t: @barelyberlee

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  • Chip_n_dale01

    He asked if requiring annual votes saved money. Of course it doesn't. This article is wrong. The question wasn't regarding collective bargaining as a whole; rather the annual vote aspect. LOL.

  • Kbdwisc

    I am sorry you're infirmed, but glad you're not leaving. We need informed and rational people in every state (well perhaps not Arizona - I fear it is too far gone) to fight for what is right and get our country back on track. The problem is that the Republican party has written the script which, until very recently, has formed the basis of our state and national budget debates, We don't have a budget crisis. We have a revenue problem. Our fiscal concerns could easily be addressed in Wisconsin, and nationally, by increasing revenue through modest tax increases for the wealthiest Americans, closing loopholes so that corporations are fairly taxed, and reducing military spending. Health care reform is also a crucial component of maintaining fiscal responsibility, and we are at least making some progress on that front. The reversed Robin Hood stance that the Republican party has taken, to take from the poor and give to the rich, is unconscionable. It seems they believe it is more important for our wealthiest citizens to be able to own larger private planes and mansions, than it is for 99.9% of Americans to obtain a good public education, afford college, and have access to basic health care. Why so many Americans don't seem to understand this is beyond my comprehension.

  • KansasDem

    Kucinich for POTUS please!

    Seriously, we hear too little of that passion. I live in south-central Kansas where it's nearly 80% Republican - among folks that have no clue what's actually going on!

    The cable providers here refuse to include MSNBC in their channel line-up! These are people who watch nothing but FOX news, if they watch at all!

    I lived nearly my entire life in the panhandle of Nebraska until disability left me unable to totally care for myself. So I had to move nearer to my oldest son who has a very small farmstead here in Kansas.

    If I were physically able to get the hell out of here I would! I've never in my life seen such a bass-ackwards approach to everything in my effing life!

    It seems that Republican's truly long for the good-ol-days of poor farms and poor-houses!