Scott Walker’s Campaign Ailed By Budget Crisis

Scott Walker is suffering from ‘Jeb Bush syndrome:’ the closer he gets to his presidential announcement, the worse his headlines are. Walker plans to run on his record in Wisconsin but that list of achievements is quickly dwindling as the state faces a massive budget crisis. The governor has already lost the support of his state’s Republican party, now he risks losing the national GOP’s nomination before his campaign even officially begins.

From the Chicago Tribune:

Once in lockstep with Walker, GOP lawmakers are flashing some independence as they struggle to make ends meet. They have refused to go along with the governor’s proposed cuts in money for elementary and secondary schools and his plans to finance a big boost in road construction solely by borrowing. They have also forced him to moderate his proposed reductions in funds for higher education.

From 2011 to 2014, the pace of private-sector employment growth in Wisconsin ranked 36th among the states and the District of Columbia, according to the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics. Walker’s state ranked behind all its Rust Belt neighbors, Illinois included. Wisconsin even trailed Kansas, which has been the focus of national attention after steep tax and spending cuts pushed by Republican Gov. Sam Brownback produced big government deficits but little economic pop.

Read more after the jump.

Walker Hides from Wisconsin’s Budget Problems in Israel

Molotov!” Scott Walker must be exhausted. He’s running for president, sprinting from the press, and hiding from serious problems back home.

Walker is currently doing the rounds in Israel, but you may not have noticed since he’s barred any media from covering his trip. Even worse, while the presumptive GOP candidate is overseas, his home state is facing severe budget cuts to education, health care, and emergency services. Luckily folks aren’t letting him off that easy.

Check out the TV clips and background after the jump.

New Web Ad: Scott Walker’s Ditch

American Bridge is releasing a new web ad today highlighting Scott Walker’s failed economic record.

The governor was once considered a frontrunner for the 2016 GOP presidential nomination, and his reelect was supposed to be a walk through the park en route to bigger and better things. Nobody is looking past November now, with Walker locked in the political fight of his life, and desperately trying to create the narrative that he’s led a triumphant comeback in the Badger State.

But that story is undermined by reality. The truth is that Walker rammed through an extreme overhaul of the budget that slashed education funding, attacked public employees, and gave massive tax cuts to the wealthy, all under the promise of job creation and balancing budgets. Well Wisconsin is last in the midwest in job growth and facing a $2 billion budget shortfall.

Scott Walker claims he’s pulling Wisconsin out of a ditch. But […]

Read more after the jump.

Wisconsin’s Economy Is Struggling Under Gov. Walker, But AFP Has $866K To Tell You Otherwise

Scott Walker has long-been considered a darling of the Tea Party movement and a contender for the 2016 Republican nomination for president. But these days, things aren’t going so well for Walker, who has been tainted by scandals, and new polling shows him tied with Democratic contender Mary Burke in his reelection bid.

Cue Walker’s allies, the Koch-funded group Americans for Prosperity. AFP has already poured $10 million into supporting Walker’s extreme agenda in Wisconsin, just announced that they are spending nearly $900,000 on a new ad to help the embattled governor.

The ad, which champions Walker’s budget reform, is called “It’s Working!”

Only there’s one problem: It isn’t!

The speakers in the ad praise Walker for his “bold leadership” on budget reform, “keeping education dollars in the classroom,” and the fact that “Wisconsin’s getting back to work, too.” But just last week, it was reported that Wisconsin is set to spend $559 million more than it takes in next year, and job growth in the state continues languish in the bottom third, nationally. Scott Walker ran for governor promising to create 250,000 jobs by the end of his first term, but PolitiFact Wisconsin now says the current job growth pace “is not nearly enough to meet the goal.” And on top of all that, he implemented the biggest education cuts in Wisconsin history.

Yet another misleading ad from AFP, another poor economic record from a high-profile Republican governor (see Christie, Chris).

Read more after the jump.

Rick Scott’s 2014 Budget: A Textbook Case Of Election Year Pandering

As Governor Rick Scott delivers his 2014-2015 budget address, Floridians would do well to see Scott’s budget for what it is: A textbook case of election year pandering. While Scott’s budget plans included hundreds of millions of dollars in vague tax breaks for special interests and dramatic cuts to various revenue sources, the Tea Party governor has also discovered an election year infatuation with spending on Everglades reconstruction, child welfare, and teacher pay raises. Scott’s predilection for election year pandering is nothing new, but the extent of it in his latest budget proposal is staggering.

Scott Has A History Of Election Year Pandering (VIDEO). According to a news segment highlighting clips of Governor Rick Scott, Scott has a history of election-year pandering. In the clip, a FOX reporter states of Scott: “He’s the Tea Party Republican who slashed school funding then raised it as he prepared for re-election, after he tied teacher pay to performance, before giving out raises regardless of performance.”

Read more after the jump.

We told you: Steve Lonegan is the face of the “new” GOP

Just over two months ago, on the night Steve Lonegan won the Republican nomination, American Bridge sent the memo below arguing that Lonegan’s brand of extremism was perfectly in line with the “new” & “rebranded” Republican Party.

If Washington Republicans’ reckless and embarrassing behavior over the past three weeks weren’t proof enough, take a look at what RNC Chairman Reince Priebus said at a Lonegan campaign rally just last night (VIDEO HERE).

“I’ll tell you what. Steve’s been able to do something that we need a lot more of in this party. And that’s unify our party, bring our party together. The Tea Party, the Republican Party, all in this together.”

— Reince Priebus, RNC Chairman

What Mr. Priebus doesn’t seem to understand is that the Republicans’ problem isn’t a lack of unity with the Tea Party. This month’s shutdown fiasco proves the GOP’s problem is, in fact, its obedience to the Tea Party.

Read more after the jump.

Cuccinelli on video: Senate needs “more Ted Cruzes”

With just hours left until the federal government shuts down, Ken Cuccinelli is still refusing to condemn the efforts of Sen. Ted Cruz and his followers. Cuccinelli’s stubborn refusal to stand up to the Tea Party and fight for what’s best for Virginia speaks volumes about his extreme views misplaced priorities.

Cuccinelli’s silence is no surprise. Last summer, Cuccinelli addressed a gathering of the Tea Party blog RedState and told the crowd that the Senate needed “more Ted Cruzes in there to back up Jim DeMint.”

Read more after the jump.

What else could New Jersey use $12 million for?

Throwing common sense and fiscal discipline aside, Gov. Chris Christie today announced he is unnecessarily holding a special election to replace the late Sen. Frank Lautenberg in October rather than including the race on the ballot for New Jersey’s regularly scheduled November elections.

Christie’s willingness to needlessly throw away 12 million in taxpayer dollars for the sole reason of boosting his own reelection campaign tears down the myth of Christie as a bold and principled governor. Today’s decision was not that of a leader, but one of a craven, self-interested politician.

While Christie may not care what it costs, taxpayers surely do. What else could New Jersey do with $12 million? A lot. Here’s a sampling, courtesy of American Bridge:

  • Rebuild 1.3 miles of boardwalk in Asbury Park. [USA Today, 12/5/12]
  • Fund two months of food bank and soup kitchen assistance for areas affected by Hurricane Sandy [Letter to Speaker Boehner From Office of the President, 12/7/2012]
  • Pay for 150% the cost of rebuilding the Belmar City Boardwalk ($8 million) [NPR, 5/26/13]
  • Restore over half of Christie’s cuts to medical services for the elderly (he cut them $21M). [NJ.com,6/29/12]
  • Pay for all of the non-profit grants awarded by the Hurricane Sandy Relief Fund with nearly $1M to spare. [Hurricane Sandy New Jersey Relief Fund, Viewed 6/4/2013]
  • The entire cost of funding New Jersey’s Family Success Centers. [Christie Announcement Of Family Center Funding, 10/9/12]
  • The cost of funding New Jersey’s Cancer Education and Early Detection Program [Office of the Governor, October, 2012]
  • The cost of increasing local aid grants for improving street, safety and quality of life improvements by 15% (the state has spent $76.2M). [NJ.com, 5/1/13]
  • More than the entire budget of the Skills4Jersey Training Grant Program (it’s $11M). [Notice of Grant Opportunity, Fiscal Year 2013]
  • Brand new high tech fire trucks, police vehicles, ambulance vans, and other emergency management equipment, as recently granted by the federal government to Jersey City. [NJ.com, 6/9/12]
  • Restore the vetoed tax cut for Jersey Shore production, with $11.5M to spare. [NYT, 9/26/11]