In his State of the State address Tuesday night, Governor Tony Evers announced he’ll call a special session for the Legislature to address problems with the state unemployment system, which was overwhelmed with massive numbers of claims due to the coronavirus pandemic.
In his response, Speaker Robin Vos blamed the governor. “These failures weren’t brought on by ancient systems, they were brought on by a lack of leadership,” Vos said. “These failures were brought unnecessary hardship to Wisconsin families. The Evers administration owes these families answers, and in may cases an apology.”
Vos also criticized the Evers administration’s COVID-19 vaccination program. “There seems to be no sense of urgency with the Evers administration,” Vos said. “They’ve had months to develop a plan, and a subcommittee is still deciding who should get the vaccine next. Wisconsin is an embarrassment compared to other states.”
Evers’ speech came just hours after the Republican controlled state Senate passed a COVID-19 relief bill on a bipartisan vote. The governor praised it and asked the Assembly to pass it as well. Vos characterized the bill as simply caving to the governor’s demands.
“We won’t turn our backs on Wisconsin businesses, who are at the mercy of public health officials who make blanket decisions to close their livelihoods. We won’t allow anyone to mandate vaccinations on our citizens.”
Vos also urged Wisconsin school districts to get back to in-person instruction. “Scientists around the globe, including Dr. Fauci, say the best place for students is in the classroom,” he said. “We will not turn our back on those whose children are falling behind, because in person education is determined at the whims of the teachers union, and liberal school boards.”