State Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald said Wednesday that he’s confident he’ll get the votes needed to pass the state budget in that chamber. “I’m talking to everybody. I don’t take any vote for granted, never have, that’s not how I operate,” Fitzgerald said. “You need to keep checking with people right up to the last minute. And obviously we’ll make that decision as to whether or not we’re ready to go to the floor and pass the budget next week.”
But as of Thursday morning, there are to “no” votes among Republicans in Fitzgerald’s caucus. Senators Steve Nass of Whitewater and David Craig of Waukesha both believe that the spending plan put together by Republicans on the Joint Finance Committee spends too much.
“I simply can’t deceive the taxpayers by voting for a budget that creates a significant structural deficit, generates the largest property tax hikes in a decade, contains unsustainable levels of excessive spending and authorizes an extremely offensive new vehicle miles-driven tax on motorists starting in 2023. This is not a conservative budget by any reasonable analysis. I will vote No,” Nass said in a statement on Wednesday.
“There’s no way on earth Wisconsinites are spending ten percent more n their households, in their businesses,” Craig said on WISN Radio Thursday morning. “The economy is improving, but the economy is not government proof.” Craig said he could accept a two percent spending bump, which he said is within the rate of inflation. Two more defections, and Republicans won’t be able to pass their in the Senate.
Both chambers of the legislature are expected to vote next week on the Republican budget, which Republicans leaders say is more conservative than what Governor Tony Evers proposed.