WALKER SAYS STATE PREPARED IN EVENT OF GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN

Gov. Scott Walker said today the state’s prepared should senators fail to hammer out a deal to avert a federal government shutdown.

The House passed a measure Thursday to fund the government for just under another month. But the Senate, which will need bipartisan support to pass a funding measure, has yet to reach a deal.

“We’ll be prepared either way,” Walker told reporters following an address before the Wisconsin Association of School Boards’ 97th State Education Convention in Milwaukee.

He said the state has dealt with shutdowns under both Democratic and Republican administrations, and noted the state’s budget surplus helps.

“Having a higher than expected surplus and a better cash balance than we’ve had in the past certainly helps, but our hope would be long term we don’t have to deal with it,” Walker said.

Walker, joining the chorus of Republicans seeking to pin blame on Dems for the potential shutdown, later tweeted: “Senate Democrats, do not shut down the federal government. You are jeopardizing funding for our military and health insurance for our children. That is wrong. #SchumerShutdown”.

Walker told reporters a series of tweets in which he called GOP Rep. Adam Jarchow’s loss to Dem Patty Schachtner in the 10th SD a “wake-up call” was meant to encourage Republicans to speak up about the positive things the GOP has done for the state.

“What I said the other day was that it’s a wake-up call; that we cannot assume that people in this state know about the positive things we are doing for the people of Wisconsin,” Walker said, pointing to increased investments in education and transportation, while at the same time cutting taxes.

“Just because we’ve talked about it occasionally, that doesn’t mean the average citizen knows,” Walker said. “And certainly coming into an election, we’ve got to do a better job, being me and the people that support me, a better job of telling that positive story.”

During his address to the convention, Walker stressed increased money to K-12 education and workforce development, along with measures to retain and hire more teachers.

Walker defended changes under Act 10 — widely opposed by teachers — saying the savings made the new investments possible and helped ensure money is largely spent in the classroom.

State Superintendent and Dem guv candidate Tony Evers, who took the stage following Walker to present an award, took a jab at the governor.

“How ironic,” Evers said to laughs from the crowd. “Anytime the governor takes my budget and gets it through the Legislature, I will be thankful.”

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