In his state of the state address, Governor Doyle asked for a special session to address helping families with their heating bills. The Governor wanted to use $6 million in extra funds to help more working families this year. Families of 4 that earn under $40,000 could get between $200 and $300 a piece to offset the drastic rise in heating costs.
The session was held earlier this week but only a couple of Republicans showed up. Rather than act quickly on the Doyle proposal, the Republican led legislature decided to postpone discussion on the issue. I personally believe that this is simply a stalling tactic. They say that they will address the heating assistance issue next week. Some of them are actually complaining that the Doyle proposal helps too many people. If they are really willing to discuss this issue next week, what are the chances of any relief before winter is all but over?
Are Republicans in the legislature so out of touch with working families that they do not realize what a help this aid would be? Perhaps they were simply busy with things that they considered more important. For example, we know that Assembly Speaker John Gard (R-Peshtigo) was busy during this time in Washington D.C. What was he doing in D.C. that could be more important than helping working Wisconsinite families? Raising money for his run for Congress of course! Yes that cold and calculating John Gard was wining and dining D.C. big shots at Finemondo, an expensive downtown D.C. restaurant. So while he’s balking at immediate help to working families back home, he’s playing fancy pants at his $1,000 a plate shindig.
Gard is not the only one that can be cold and calculating. So can Wisconsin voters. Particularly the working types that are struggling to pay extra high heating bills this winter. We may be left in the cold this winter, but these Republican legislators may be left in the cold on Election Day.