Most headlines Wednesday morning were variations of Walker “survives” close recall election. The actual facts are not only did Walker become the first governor to win a recall election; he improved his winning margin by 60% over his previous election only 17 months ago!
This recall election was a farce and shouldn’t have occurred. The recall was special interest groups of public employees, disagreeing with the votes of officials elected by a majority vote of the people.
The unions wanted to run Gov. Walker out of the capitol as an object lesson that trying to limit collective bargaining and mandatory dues collection for government unions will end your political career.
Walker was attacking areas that the union bosses fear the most, because it only takes one crack in their solidarity to show the union isn’t about the workers but about power.
Walker did what he said he was going to do - lower the costs of government – he converted a $3.6B Wisconsin deficit into a $154.5M surplus by fiscal 2013 without raising taxes in Wisconsin, which has the fouth highest tax burden in the nation.
He saved school districts millions of dollars in health insurance costs by eliminating the monopolistic state health insurance sold by groups associated with the unions, and gave public employees a choice to be in the public unions by removing the dues collected by the employers.
His proposals weren’t against collective bargaining, as a matter of fact the unions weren’t even debating the issue at the end of the race, and it was a losing issue with the voters. There is no way special interests, no matter how powerful, will bamboozle the entire electorate, after the results obtained thus far from the governor’s actions.
Walker has the state finances in much better shape, saved taxpayers money and created 33,000 jobs and the public union membership has dropped from 62,818 to 28,745 a decrease of over 54%.
Guess the membership didn’t like paying dues for partisan elections over their employee interests, and according to the exit-polls, 38% of the union members voted for Walker.
According to Wisconsin’s Department of Workforce Development, unemployment in Wisconsin dropped from 7.5 percent in 2011 to 6.7 percent in 2012 and Wisconsin has improved from a ranking of 41 on a list of the best/worst states for business under former Democratic Governor Jim Doyle, to 20th under Walker.
Governor Walker withstood the heat and retained his position as a result.
Republicans, who too often flee the political kitchen unable to stand the heat, will see that political fire can often strengthen backbones. Walker has stood against the heat of labor unions, not only in his state but from others as well, that descended on Wisconsin, occupying the state capitol for weeks last winter.
He has also withstood the media onslaught, which, with few exceptions, has favored unions and Democrats in their pursuit of unaffordable benefits and unlimited spending.
When the public is treated like adults and issues are carefully explained to them, they make decisions that are in their government’s best interest, as well as their own. The left has thrived on emotion and superficialities in selling nonstop spending and government expansion to the public.
The results of Tuesday’s election will embolden other fiscally conservative governors in Ohio, Michigan, New Jersey, etc. to take similar steps that will loosen the shackles from all taxpayers that are footing the unrealistic pensions and health care benefits for public unions.