Candidates For Governor Disagree On Changes To Income Tax Withholding

Walker Touts Tax Reduction; Burke Says Move Is Too Risky

Gov. Scott Walker, left, and Mary Burke, right.

The two main candidates in Wisconsin’s gubernatorial race disagree on the state’s changes to income tax withholding that started on Tuesday.

Gov. Scott Walker proposed the recently passed cut in state withholding. He touted the reduction yesterday, while in effect campaigning at a foundry in Milwaukee.

“When I go around the state, whether it’s here in Milwaukee or elsewhere, I don’t hear anybody say, ‘I want you to keep more of my money in Madison,’” Walker said. “I don’t hear people say, ‘You know, I don’t send enough money to Madison, to the Capitol.’ I hear people say all the time that, ‘My taxes are too high.’”

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Walker told the foundry managers and blue-collar workers in the thick air of the plant that a family of two working adults and two children would take home an additional $520 over the rest of the calendar year. Walker didn’t mention what state revenue Secretary Rick Chandler told a reporter: that the typical family’s state income tax refund next spring will shrink by $300-$400.

Walker says it’s important to get people more money now, “so they can get it into the economy: the sooner, the better.”

Democrat Mary Burke would be governor a year from now, when those smaller state refund checks are issued, if she defeats the Republican incumbent in this fall’s election.

Burke says handing more money to citizens now is risky for the state. “This is all based on a projected surplus that is 18 months away,” Burke said, “after adding debt and going into the next budget with an $800 million deficit.”

Walker says the state’s finances are in good shape, and he would work to see the withholding reductions stay in effect during the next two-year budget.