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What should Walker veto?

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Greg Peck
June 25, 2013

Remember the so-called “Frankenstein veto”? It allowed Wisconsin governors to stitch together words and numbers from more than one sentence to create policy and taxing levels never approved by the Legislature. For example, former Democratic Gov. Jim Doyle used this unprecedented power to transform a 272-word budget section into a 20-word sentence that swiped $427 million from the supposedly segregated transportation fund and handed it to public schools. In 2008, Wisconsinites approved a constitutional amendment to limit this “Frankenstein” veto power.

Not that Gov. Scott Walker has no veto power. In fact, he still has broad authority to veto whole chunks of the budget. For example, he could reverse course and strike entirely the provision that would allow DNA testing of any suspect arrested in felony or misdemeanor sex cases. We’ve suggested previously that this plan undermines the presumption of innocence and violates constitutional protections against unreasonable searches and seizures. Maybe you agree.

Our inside source is betting that Walker will announce his vetoes this weekend, perhaps Sunday. That’s because, two years ago, Walker picked the Sunday before the July 1 start of the fiscal year to announce his vetoes.

What provisions would you like to see Walker veto? We’ll offer our suggestions in our editorial Wednesday.

Greg Peck can be reached at (608) 755-8278 or gpeck@gazettextra.com. Or follow him on Twitter or Facebook



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