Chippewa County (WQOW)- During a stop in the Chippewa Valley on Thursday Governor Scott Walker still refused to acknowledge the allegation that he solicited millions in donations for a 3rd party conservative group that helped him and other Republicans fend off recall challenges. That's despite what some say is evidence of exactly that, published by the Guardian Newspaper this week.
When asked about the more than 1,000 pages of leaked John Doe documents the governor repeated that nothing prosecutors found proved to be illegal in any court of law. "It's been in both the state and federal courts, they've consistently shut it down saying this was a baseless investigation. And so for those that can't win in a court of law, they've decided to selectively release documents, to try and win in the court of public opinion," said Walker. "By selective I mean they do it without context, without understanding, and that's just because they failed in court. So they're trying to persuade people in a way that's in direct violation of the law, the way they did it."
As for "Pay-for-Play" allegations from Democrats, who are connecting the dots between donors who gave large amounts of money to Club for Growth and then saw the governor sign laws favorable to their interests, Walker says he signed those laws because they related to issues he'd supported for years.
During his stop at the Highway X bridge construction project in Chippewa County the governor also found himself defending his administration's road-funding proposal. Assembly Republicans are bashing the transportation budget, saying the proposal isn't a real solution.
It provides $65 million dollars more for local governments and commits $605 million for county and state road maintenance efforts which is about $70 million more than the last budget. But the plan would also cut $447 million from state highway programs and would translate to delays on a number of major projects . Assembly Speaker Robin Vos and three other GOP state representatives issued a statement Thursday afternoon saying that delaying projects means they'll just cost more in the future and lead to dramatic increases in fees or taxes.
Governor Walker said Thursday that doing everything at once could jeopardize the safety and maintenance of the projects. "We're going to pay for them as we can, pay as we go, not build everything all at once, and we think that's a reasonable approach that most people in their own homes and most small business owners do on a routine basis, that's exactly what we're doing here," explained Walker. "So this is a fiscally sound budget that puts an emphasis on safety and maintenance of the existing system and on helping our partners in county and municipal government do the same thing at the local level."
Governor Walker says he would veto any increase in the gas tax or vehicle registration fee if it winds up in the upcoming state budget unless there was tax relief elsewhere in the spending plan.