After reading the opinion piece by Erling Landsverk of King published October 2, 2014, I knew it was time to write my first ever opinion piece of my own.
Anyone that listens to the political ads, from either party, and believes them is likely to be an uninformed or only partially informed voter. I encourage all voters to do their own research. I personally try to find information from sources other than the candidates themselves.
Regarding Act 10, the MacIver Institute published an article written by Nick Novak on July 30, 2014. In this article, the following points, among others were made: Act 10 has saved Wisconsin taxpayers over $3 billion dollars. It has enabled teachers to choose whether or not they wanted to be represented by a union. With this choice, members of 81 school districts voted out the union.
Additionally, teachers are no longer required to personally belong to a union. They can decide whether they want to support the union through dues (which are as high as $800 per year). School districts are no longer required to purchase health care insurance plans from the union. Instead they can choose to bid for such plans in the marketplace. As a result, many districts have saved millions of dollars, simply by entering the competitive insurance market.
Act 10 brought taxpayer savings, operational flexibility to the school systems, and individual choice to the teachers. All this and much more was made possible by the courage of Gov. Scott Walker and his administration.
Regarding the cost of health care premiums, in an article written by Avik Roy and published at Forbes.com on Nov. 4, 2013, we learn that ObamaCare has caused the underlying cost of health insurance premiums to increase by 41 percent in the average state. This data was taken from an in-depth analysis conducted by the Manhattan Institute.
ObamaCare is a federal law enacted by a Democratic-controlled Congress, most of whom did not read the bill before voting for it. In the words of House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Cal., “We have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it.”
On top of that, Congress exempted themselves from ObamaCare. Apparently, they didn’t want it for themselves.
The Walker administration did not pass ObamaCare. Scott Walker is our state’s governor, not a member of the U.S. Congress, and he is not a Democrat. He did not vote for the ObamaCare bill without reading it as most of the Democrats in Congress did. Now the average state is seeing a 41 percent increase in the underlying insurance premiums.
Finally, regarding the state deficit, Scott Walker inherited a $3.6 billion budget shortfall from the Doyle administration when Walker took office in 2011. In spite of this, Walker cut taxes by almost $2 billion since he took office and the 2013 fiscal year ended with a $724 million dollar surplus. This information is from an article written by Scott Bauer of the Associated Press, and published by the Wisconsin State Journal on Aug. 29, 2014.
The alleged deficit that many people are touting is not an actual deficit. It is a projected deficit in a budget that assumes that nothing will change from today’s data. Budgets are built based on historically known data (What happened in recent years?), economic trends (Are the economic figures trending up or down and by how much?), and anticipated budgetary needs and desires. In other words, budgets are built based on assumptions using the best data available at the time the budget is made. Budgets try to predict the future. Rarely do all predictions come out 100 percent accurate.
Will there be an actual deficit? It’s possible but doubtful. Because this administration recovered from a $3.6 billion inherited shortfall, I believe that they will successfully resolve any issues related to this projected budgetary shortfall.
Walker and his administration have put Wisconsin on a path for success. We need to stay the course.