Healthy Wisconsin never got a hearing in the Assembly and it was removed from the state budget after, but if you listen to political advertising airing across Wisconsin, it's the biggest threat to the state's business growth.
Michigan-based All Children Matter and the Middleton-headquartered Working Families PAC have been attacking Democratic legislative candidates by claiming they are supporters of Healthy Wisconsin, even though the candidates say that is not true.
The author of the Healthy Wisconsin plan says the independent expenditure group ads are "distortions" and should be disregarded by voters. Several candidates and the state Democratic Party have asked television stations to remove the ads, some of which claim Health Wisconsin will encourage illegal immigrants to move to the state.
State Senator Jon Erpenbach (D-Middleton) says statements in the independent expenditure groups' ads about the program's costs are partially true, but also leave out key information. For example, he says they cite an average $510 increase in payroll taxes, but ignore that the money would replace what employees are currently paying for health insurance.
Erpenbach says it's not "government-controlled health care", but a private/public partnership based on the health insurance available to legislators already. He says those lawmakers fighting against the plan are simply saying the health insurance they collect isn't good enough for the people they represent.
Erpenbach plans to re-introduce Healthy Wisconsin next year, but expects a lot of changes from fellow Democrats.