“Tonight’s results will echo beyond the borders of Wisconsin. Governor Walker has shown that citizens and taxpayers can fight back – and prevail – against the runaway government costs imposed by labor bosses,” Mitt Romney said last night in response to Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s seven-point victory over his Democratic challenger. He is dead right.
Walker’s big win is a mortal threat not just to President Obama, but to Democrat governance everywhere. Ever since the Tea Party erupted in 2009, the Democrat attack on Republicans has been that they cannot govern. “This divide and conquer, no-compromise crowd — if they had been in control, there never would have been a United States Constitution,” former President Clinton said of Walker while campaigning in Wisconsin last weekend.
But Walker’s win, and the success of other Republican governors around the country exposes Clinton’s analysis as a fraud. Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, chairman of the Republican Governors Association tells Politico, “Things I’ve done in Virginia, Chris Christie has done in New Jersey and other governors around the country is what Scott Walker was doing, and that is, he balances the budget without raising taxes, eliminates $3.6 billion in deficits; he creates the environment for the first property tax cut in 30 years; he focused like a laser on job creation.”
Contrast the successful record of Republican governors in New Jersey, Wisconsin, Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Texas, and Louisiana with the perpetual Blue State basket cases of California and Illinois. Ruled by government union controlled Democratic parties, California and Illinois are both swimming in red ink, can’t pay their bills, and have unemployment rates higher than the national average.
That is the contrast Romney will draw with Obama this fall. Do Americans want to make the tough reforms to turn the economy around and put the budget back in black like Walker has done in Wisconsin? Or do they want to raise taxes, drive businesses away, and seek deeper into debt like California and Florida. If Tuesday is any indication, Americans will choose the former.
Wisconsin: BuzzFeed reports from Democrat headquarters in Milwaukee: “Though most Democrats involved with the recall effort here say publicly that they don’t resent the lack of outside support, the subtext is clear: where was President Obama and the national Democratic party? … The crowd was so disgruntled, in fact, that one woman slapped Barrett in the face as he left the stage for the last time. … ‘I worked hard for Obama,’ said Patty, a special-education teacher from Chicago who has been coming to Wisconsin since last year to volunteer with the recall. ‘I was furious that he didn’t come to Milwaukee,’ Patty said. ‘And I said, I wasn’t going to work for him anymore.’ ‘I’m sure he didn’t come because he didn’t want to be embarrassed,’ she said.”
Obama: On CNBC yesterday, former President Clinton said the U.S. economy was in “recession” and, contra Obama’s official position, advised Democrats not to let the Bush tax cuts expire this fall.
Romney: The website Gawker claims an anonymous hacker had accessed Mitt Romney’s personal Hotmail account. Romney’s campaign said that “proper authorities are investigating this crime.”
Around the Bigs
The Washington Examiner, CBO warns against delaying action on debt: The Congressional Budget Office released its annual update on the nation’s long-term budget outlook, showing that if Congress continues to conduct policy as it has been, the nation’s debt will eclipse 101 percent of GDP by 2024 and 250 percent by 2047.
The Wall Street Journal, Fed Considers More Action Amid New Recovery Doubts: Disappointing U.S. economic data, new strains in financial markets and deepening worries about Europe’s fiscal crisis have prompted a shift at the Federal Reserve, putting back on the table the possibility of action to spur the recovery.
The Wall Street Journal, Solar Firm’s Big Push for U.S. Loan: The recipient of the Obama administration’s biggest loan guarantee for solar energy won federal money after an intense push in early 2011 that included hiring a former chief of staff to Vice President Joe Biden to lobby the administration.
The Wall Street Journal, Stockton Moves Closer to Bankruptcy: By a 6-to-1 vote, Stockton’s City Council passed a resolution authorizing their city manager to declare bankruptcy if the city can’t reach an agreement with creditors that prevents insolvency.
The Washington Post, Spain pleads for help in European crisis: Treasury Minister Cristobal Montoro called Tuesday for Europe to give his country’s faltering banks direct aid in a bid to prevent Spain’s financial system and the government’s finances from dragging each other down.
The New York Times, Greece Warns of Going Broke as Tax Proceeds Dry Up: Greek leaders said that despite their latest bailout of 130 billion euros, or $161.7 billion, they face a shortfall of 1.7 billion euros because tax revenue and other sources of potential income are drying up.
The New York Times, Cost of Prekindergarten Special Education Is Soaring: New York City is paying private contractors more than $1 billion this year to operate a little-known special education program for 3- and 4-year-olds, nearly double the amount it paid six years ago.
The Washington Examiner‘s Michael Barone says Tuesday’s results show Wisconsin is in play this November.
The Washington Examiner‘s Phil Klein writes that Walker’s win shows “voters will ultimately reward politicians for showing political courage on the big issues if they have the resolve to see their policies implemented and watch them succeed.”
Talking Points Memo‘s Josh Marshall shares his “Initial Thoughts” on Big Labor’s loss in Wisconsin.