Suspicions confirmed: Walker has no deficit plan | Wis.Community

Suspicions confirmed: Walker has no deficit plan

Finally, a reporter has asked Scott Walker how he intends to pay for the $2-billion in tax breaks he's proposed for corporations and wealthy individuals, as One Wisconsin Now has been asking for months.

Scott Bauer of The Associated Press asked the question, and -- surprise! -- Walker didn't have much of an answer.

He back-pedaled pretty quickly. It turns out he doesn't have a tax plan, the AP learned:

Walker has been working with Republican lawmakers on the Legislature's budget-writing committee to come up with a more detailed spending cut plan that will incorporate how he intends to pay for repealing the tax increases.

The idea that you could offer those big tax cuts on top of a projected $2-billion structural deficit was too much even for the Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance -- a conservative group that usually can find a way to support any cockamamie Republican idea -- to swallow, AP reported:


Solving the expected budget shortfall, not accounting for any tax breaks or new spending, will be daunting, said Todd Berry, president of the nonpartisan Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance.>p> "Whatever you want to do makes the challenge bigger," Berry said... Making the cuts necessary to eliminate the ongoing deficit is doable "if you want to serve one term," Berry said.

State Rep. Robin Vos, part of the GOP brain trust working on Walker's plan, now says you can't do everything in one year, but will have to phased in over time. And Walker says he's going to look at a whole tax system overhaul that will give tax cuts to everyone, not just the rich.

All of that sounds very much like someone scrambling to get back in from a limb he climbed out on without knowing what he was talking about.

Walker (and Mark Neumann, who's had his own goofy budget pronouncements) apparently thought no one would ever ask him for any specifics. A lot of other people were starting to think he might be right.

But now the AP has started asking some of the questions no other journalists have pursued. That's progress. The next step would be to get more of the state's AP newspaper members, like that big one in Milwaukee, to run the story or write one of their own.



June 21, 2010 - 3:36pm