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Two parties could find agreement in Madison, now that election’s over, says political scientist, Dr. Heim



Politics in Madison could stay the same for another two years, as a result of elections around Wisconsin.

Republicans will still control both houses of the Legislature, but they didn’t get a vetoproof majority. And they didn’t get a Republican governor, either, as Democrat Tony Evers won a second term.

Will this mean more special sessions that are gaveled in and out in a matter of seconds? Republicans did that 11 times under Evers’ first term, while Evers vetoed a record 146 bills — 126 of them broken down here by Wisconsin Public Radio.

Political scientist, Dr. Joe Heim, said Wednesday on WIZM’s La Crosse Talk that there might be more bipartisanship, now that this election is over. But the UW-La Crosse Professor Emeritus is still surprised that the GOP turned down an Evers tax cut plan recently.

“I thought that would be one area they could agree on,” Heim said, “and I will bet you, I will put money on the fact that they will be able to agree on that one. We’re gonna see a tax cut that’s approved in the budget by the Republicans, and Democrats maybe, and the governor’s gonna sign it.”

The GOP-controlled state Legislature has been sitting on an ever-expanding budget surplus all year. Evers proposed a plan back in January and another in August to use it, as the cash has now ballooned to an estimated $6 billion.

But with Evers re-elected, Republicans can’t likely sit on the surplus for another four years, like they did hoping Republican Tim Michels would win the election.

Wisconsin voters Tuesday broke from a tradition of not splitting tickets.

In recent past, they would usually elect a governor and US Senator from the same party, but this year, voters kept both Democrat Evers and Republican Sen. Ron Johnson in office.

Heim is among the experts trying to figure out why the midterm election didn’t follow the usual pattern of voting against the party in the White House.

He said that President Joe Biden’s popularity remains low, but he wonders whether voters refrained from blaming Biden for bad economic conditions, because unemployment is low.

Heim added that it appears Republicans were motivated by inflation and money issues, while Democrats, interested in women’s right to choose, turned out in large numbers.

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.

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