GOP Lawmakers Propose Limiting Governor’s Veto Power

Republican State lawmakers are proposing a resolution that would limit the veto powers of Wisconsin governors less than a week after Democratic Gov. Tony Evers issued 68 partial vetoes of the state budget.

The proposal, sponsored by Sen. David Craig, R-Big Bend, and Rep. Mike Kuglitsch, R-New Berlin, would bar the governor from making any vetoes that increase state spending.

Governor Evers used his veto pen to increase K-12 education spending in the budget by about $65 million.

The proposal appears to have a footing in the GOP-controlled Legislature.

Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, R-Juneau, issued a statement Tuesday saying he supports the plan.

“Governors of both parties have used their partial veto powers to increase appropriations above what is authorized by the Legislature, which is concerning to lawmakers who are tasked with setting spending levels,” Fitzgerald said in the statement. “I look forward to discussing this resolution in the coming months.”

Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, R-Rochester, also said he supports the resoution.

“It’s common sense to not be able to increase spending through a veto,” Vos said in a statement. “I plan to have a caucus discussion on the amendment in the near future.”

The governor’s spokeswoman, Melissa Baldauff, dismissed the proposal as the action of “sore losers” who “want to change the rules every time they don’t get their way.”

“Republicans in the Legislature chose to ignore the will of the people, but Gov. Evers listened to the people who overwhelmingly said they wanted to see more investments in our public schools,” Baldauff said. “To be clear, this is a temper tantrum in response to Gov. Evers using his authority to align the budget more closely with the will of the people and put more money into our kids’ schools