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As I See It

Wisconsin’s special sessions a waste of time and money



This doesn’t sound like a very effective system. In Wisconsin, the law gives the Governor the authority to call lawmakers into a special session of the Legislature. That is typically reserved for dealing with emergencies, or for settling the most pressing and contentious issues affecting the state. When the Governor calls lawmakers back to Madison, they are required to attend, and to formally conduct a meeting. But unfortunately, they are not required to actually do anything. They are not required to vote on the issue, or even to conduct any debate or take any public input. They simply must meet. So that is what they do. For about sixty seconds or less. Such is the quandary facing Governor Evers as he has called legislators back to Madison next week to hold a meeting on the state’s existing abortion law. They will attend, but it will be another sham meeting with no purpose. They will ignore the more than sixty percent of Wisconsinites who think the state’s current abortion law is wrong and needs to be updated. The rules governing special sessions should be changed so that lawmakers have to do more than just drive to Madison and turn around and go home. They shouldn’t be allowed to refuse to do their jobs. Doing so is a waste of their time, and the taxpayer’s money.

Scott Robert Shaw serves as WIZM Program Director and News Director, and delivers the morning news on WKTY, Z-93 and 95.7 The Rock. Scott has been at Mid-West Family La Crosse since 1989, and authors Wisconsin's only daily radio editorial, "As I See It" heard on WIZM each weekday morning and afternoon.

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  1. Mike Sladky

    September 26, 2022 at 8:04 am

    Hey Robert, Why don’t you mention what the Democrats did in 2011–Fleeing the state to avoid state troopers in order to delay a bill regarding public employee union/collective bargaining proposals.

  2. Wayne

    September 26, 2022 at 8:23 am

    It’s wrong no matter who’s doing it. They ran for office to represent voters, debate issues, solve problems and at least vote so constituants know where they stand. This isn’t right and is a waste of everyone’s time and money not just one party’s.

  3. Nick

    September 26, 2022 at 8:47 am

    There used to be a national party known as the do nothings.
    This is what the Republican Party is in Wisconsin.
    There are two pressing issues that should be dealt with.
    The first is abortion and the second is Forever Chemicals.
    The latter should have been resolved; especially with a huge surplus.
    As a devout Catholic, I am opposed to abortion but could live with the exception for rape, incest, life of the mother.

  4. Casey

    September 26, 2022 at 1:08 pm

    If Wisconsin Republicans didn’t schedule themselves a 10-month PAID vacation every year, special sessions might not be needed. Less than 10% of Democrat bills even make it to the floor, and over 200 people have been waiting over THREE years to be be confirmed by GOP-controlled legislature. I see no reason GOP can’t do what they are paid to do – this gaveling in/out is childish. Have honest and open debate, vote up down, I don’t care – just do your JOB!

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