SEVERE WX : Heat Advisory View Alerts
STREAMING NOW: Watch Now

Here's how Wisconsin Republicans want to strip power from incoming Democrats

Republican Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker is on his way out, defeated in November by Democratic Gov.-elect Tony...

Posted: Dec 10, 2018 6:42 PM
Updated: Dec 10, 2018 6:42 PM

Republican Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker is on his way out, defeated in November by Democratic Gov.-elect Tony Evers. But with an assist from his GOP allies in the state legislature, Walker appear poised to sign off on a suite of measures designed to strip power from his successor.

The bills on Walker's desk would weaken the state's executive branch at precisely the time Democrats are set to reclaim it after nearly a decade on the outs. The legislation also targets the authorities of incoming Democratic Attorney General Josh Kaul, who, like Evers, campaigned heavily on promises to expand health care and protect welfare programs.

Continents and regions

Elections and campaigns

Government and public administration

Government bodies and offices

Governors

Heads of government

Legislation

Legislative bodies

Midwestern United States

North America

Political Figures - US

Political organizations

Politics

Scott Walker

The Americas

Tony Evers

United States

US Democratic Party

US political parties

US Republican Party

Voters and voting

Wisconsin

Republican leaders in the state have made their motivations clear. On Tuesday, before the voting began, state Assembly Speaker Robin Vos set the stakes for his Republican colleagues: "We are going to have a very liberal governor," he said, "who is going to enact policies that are in direct contrast to what many of us believe in."

Unless, of course, they voted to limit that governor's power. After a number of the bills passed, Vos pledged to "stand like bedrock" against the agenda of the state's newly elected Democrats.

How is he going to do it? Here are the actions, authored and passed by Republicans, that are now before Walker. Walker has six days from when the bills arrive on his desk to make a decision on what to do with them.

Tom Evenson, Walker's communicators director, tells CNN that Walker has yet to request the bill from the legislature, meaning the six-day countdown clock has not started.

Cutting early voting

One of the new measures would limit early voting to a period of two weeks, a substantial cut for places like Milwaukee, where Democrats have a significant advantage over Republicans.

Evers, who won the statewide election by fewer than 30,000 votes, defeated Walker in Milwaukee County by more 138,000 votes. Milwaukee's early voting began in late September 2018 and went on for about six weeks ahead of Election Day.

This move will almost surely be challenged and decided in the courts, which previously shot down a similar initiative.

Cementing Medicaid work requirements

As part of the package passed early Wednesday morning, Republicans codified work requirements for some Medicaid recipients. The Trump administration in October granted Walker's request for a waiver that would allow the state to enact the controversial policy, which Evers opposes and recently told reporters he might seek to unwind using his executive power.

But the new legislation would also require that Evers obtain permission from the GOP legislature before seeking to tweak the conditions of federal waivers or making changes to public assistance programs.

Diminishing the new attorney general's powers

Both Evers and Kaul committed during the campaign to pulling Wisconsin out of a multi-state lawsuit seeking to invalidate Obamacare. That decision -- whether to join or withdraw from this kind of litigation -- has been one for the attorney general and governor. But the new legislation would add another party to the discussion: the legislature, which would essentially be given veto power over Kaul and likely keep the state in the suit.

The lawmakers would also grant themselves the power to hire private lawyers to defend state laws facing court challenges -- another move designed to chip away at Kaul and the new administration's powers.

Protecting a state jobs agency

Evers on the stump said he would disband the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation, a jobs agency that has come under intense scrutiny for its role in providing tax incentive deals to major corporations like tech manufacturing giant Foxconn. The company received around $4 billion in tax breaks and other financial inducements as part of its agreement to build a factory in Wisconsin. But by the state's own estimates, the lost revenue will not be made up for nearly 25 years.

Under the new provisions, Republicans in the legislature would appoint a majority of the agency's board, which would until later next year (when the power would be returned to the governor) get to name its own leader, effectively guaranteeing GOP control of the agency until September 2019.

Correction: This story has been updated to correctly state the timeframe in which Gov. Scott Walker has to sign the bills passed by the legislature.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 48626

Reported Deaths: 2717
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion11723689
Lake5212244
Elkhart332051
Allen2815132
St. Joseph198168
Cass16399
Hamilton1596101
Hendricks1414100
Johnson1288117
Porter73637
Tippecanoe7279
Madison66364
Clark66044
Bartholomew58944
Howard58057
LaPorte57926
Vanderburgh5706
Kosciusko5564
Marshall4926
Noble48428
Jackson4723
LaGrange4719
Delaware45050
Boone44943
Hancock44935
Shelby43025
Floyd38244
Morgan32931
Monroe30128
Montgomery29720
Grant29526
Clinton2892
Dubois2836
Henry28016
White26510
Decatur25532
Lawrence24625
Vigo2368
Dearborn23323
Warrick22129
Harrison21622
Greene19032
Miami1842
Jennings17612
Putnam1708
DeKalb1634
Scott1628
Daviess14717
Wayne1426
Orange13523
Perry1359
Steuben1302
Franklin1268
Ripley1227
Jasper1212
Wabash1132
Carroll1102
Fayette1017
Newton9910
Whitley965
Starke933
Gibson872
Randolph804
Huntington782
Wells751
Jefferson722
Fulton711
Jay680
Washington671
Pulaski661
Knox640
Clay604
Rush583
Adams501
Owen491
Benton480
Sullivan451
Posey440
Spencer411
Blackford392
Brown391
Crawford320
Fountain322
Tipton311
Switzerland270
Martin230
Parke230
Ohio170
Vermillion140
Warren141
Union130
Pike110
Unassigned0193

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 58904

Reported Deaths: 2970
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Franklin10587431
Cuyahoga8048379
Hamilton6158204
Lucas2788303
Marion273439
Pickaway220141
Summit2175207
Montgomery213431
Mahoning1849238
Butler163747
Columbiana130660
Stark1133113
Lorain105167
Trumbull97473
Warren88124
Clark7729
Delaware58815
Fairfield58516
Tuscarawas56810
Belmont55422
Medina53632
Lake50819
Licking49612
Miami47231
Portage44959
Ashtabula43644
Wood43651
Clermont4226
Geauga40843
Wayne36352
Richland3475
Allen32341
Mercer2879
Greene2769
Darke25326
Erie24622
Holmes2393
Huron2232
Madison1999
Ottawa15024
Sandusky13714
Crawford1365
Washington13520
Ross1303
Putnam12915
Coshocton1272
Hardin12312
Morrow1171
Auglaize1074
Jefferson912
Monroe8917
Union891
Muskingum861
Hancock791
Hocking788
Preble781
Guernsey743
Lawrence720
Williams722
Shelby694
Clinton680
Logan641
Athens631
Fulton620
Ashland601
Carroll593
Wyandot595
Brown581
Knox521
Defiance513
Fayette460
Highland451
Scioto450
Champaign411
Van Wert380
Perry351
Seneca342
Henry300
Paulding260
Adams241
Jackson240
Pike240
Vinton222
Gallia181
Harrison121
Meigs120
Morgan110
Noble110
Unassigned00
Fort Wayne
Clear
73° wxIcon
Hi: 90° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 73°
Angola
Clear
73° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 73°
Huntington
Clear
73° wxIcon
Hi: 90° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 73°
Decatur
Clear
73° wxIcon
Hi: 90° Lo: 71°
Feels Like: 73°
Van Wert
Clear
73° wxIcon
Hi: 92° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 73°
Hot with storms Thursday
WFFT Radar
WFFT Temperatures
WFFT National

Community Events