Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has a new target in his sights: Common Core.
Touching briefly upon education, Walker noted in his speech, “We will ensure every child, despite background, has access to a good education.”
“As he works to continue transforming education, Gov. Walker will work with the legislature on an education reform bill that includes accountability for all schools receiving state funds, as well as a repeal of Common Core,” Walker press secretary Laurel Patrick told The Daily Caller News Foundation.
“The bottom line is he wants to make sure that no school district in the state is required to use the Common Core standards,” she added.
During his speech, before moving onto his second term priorities, Walker did address the public-sector union reforms that defined his first term.
“Thankfully because of our reforms, our children are growing up in a Wisconsin that’s even better” Walker declared to an enthusiastic crowd. “We took power away from the big government special interests and put it in the hands of you, the taxpayer.”
Throughout his speech, Walker promised that he would focus on growing the economy, developing the workforce, transforming education, reforming government, and investing in infrastructure.
“We will reduce the size of the state’s government” Walker promised. “Budgets will be based on the taxpayer’s ability to pay, not the government’s ability to spend.”
“Governor Walker is committed to reforming state government to make it work better for taxpayers, eliminating waste and streamlining repetitive bureaucracy,” Patrick told TheDCNF.
“That is why in the coming months legislation will be introduced to reduce the number of state agencies and aimed at a common sense approach to providing necessary services at a great value to taxpayers” Patrick added. “He will work with his leadership team to ensure a smooth transition at the impacted agencies.”
But not everyone in Wisconsin is optimistic about Walker’s second term.
“While I am hopeful that I can work with Gov. Walker and my Republican colleagues this upcoming legislative session to enact much-needed reform for our families, I am increasingly concerned that Gov. Walker is pushing Wisconsin in the wrong direction” Democratic State Sen. Harris Dodd told TheDCNF.
“Instead of promoting initiatives that expand economic opportunity for our families, such as raising the minimum wage and investing in our public schools, Gov. Walker and Republican legislators have consistently sent the message that they are unwilling to invest in the hard-working families of this state” Dodd said.
“I believe the next legislative session will be tough on Wisconsin families if Gov. Walker and Republican legislators continue on the path that they have been going for the past four years,” Dodd added.
Despite union reform no longer being a top priority, Walker became well known during his first term when he worked with the state’s Republican legislature to pass a labor reform initiative, known as Act 10. The act significantly changed the collective bargaining process for most public employees within the state.
The policy initiative quickly made Walker a target of unions, which tried defeating him in recall election and the 2014 midterm election. Walker, however, was able to defeat his critics each time.
Recently, when Republicans in the state’s legislature, including Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, began discussing the possibility of drafting right-to-work legislation, Walker warned them that the issue could become a distraction from more important goals.
“Governor Walker’s focus is on growing Wisconsin’s economy and creating jobs,” Patrick told TheDCNF. “Anything that distracts from that is not a priority.”
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