State GOP fails to build veto-proof majority
MADISON, Wis. (CBS 58) – The era of divided government is set to continue in Wisconsin as Republicans fell short of building a veto-proof majority in both the Assembly and Senate.
Democrats also had underwhelming performances that were expected to shakeup the makeup of the Legislature.
In the end, the GOP maintains control of the Legislature, but Governor Tony Evers holds onto an influential veto pen.
“The voters have spoken and they have returned a good, conservative majority to the Legislature,” Assembly Speaker Robin Vos said in a video released Wednesday.
Vos said in his video that the Legislature will focus on responding to the ongoing health and economic effects of the pandemic when it returns to its new session in January. It will also be tasked with address the state’s new budget for the next two years – a challenge as the pandemic has significantly hurt the state’s economy.
Governor Tony Evers reacted to his veto power being maintained.
“All that’s good but it’s all frankly reflective of our state,” Evers said, adding he recognizes how closely split the state is.
In the end, Democrats had flipped two seats in the Assembly and Republicans flipped two seats in the Senate.
In a statement, Republican Party of Wisconsin Char Andrew Hitt said, “Two weeks ago Democrats were fantasizing about a majority in the Assembly and spending over one million dollars in a failed attempt to target Speaker Vos. Despite their onslaught of outside money, all the Democrats have to show for their efforts is a 60+ GOP majority in the Assembly and two new Republican Senate seats.”
The main battles in the Assembly focused on the Milwaukee suburbs.
Democrat Deb Andraca defeated Republican incumbent Jim Ott in a victory for liberals.
The GOP also targeted Rep. Robyn Vining’s 14th District seat that was long held by Republicans. But Vining defeated challenger Bonnie Lee and the Democrat credits community support for her victory.
“We flipped this seat that a decade ago was gerrymandered about 10 points red and two years ago we flipped it with about point-four percent,” Vinding told CBS 58. “And this time we won with an eight-point margin, so we took that flip from the last time and we increased it by eight points and I think that is really exciting.”
Vining echoed the sentiment of Evers and Vos in saying there’s much work to do.
“We need to get back to work, there is no excuse there cannot be the excuse that we have one party in one branch and one in power in the other, that is not an excuse, Wisconsinites are expecting us to get back to work and we need to do it we need to do it immediately.”