Majority Party Plays Politics, Denies Vote on Job Creation
 
(MADISON) Senator Lena C. Taylor (D-Milwaukee) today criticized Senate Republicans for blocking a majority vote on mining legislation that has long been trumpeted as a job creation priority. Republicans sent the mining bill back to committee after a poor amendment from the Joint Committee on Finance was rejected by the Senate. Democrats joined Senator Dale Schultz (D-Richland Center) to offer an amendment with a majority consensus but were prevented from a final vote by the Republican leadership.
 
“After all the rhetoric of job creation merits of mining, Republicans today showed that they have no interest in accomplishing a mining bill outside of using it as a political football,” Taylor said. “Democrats worked across the aisle and had a bill ready to pass the Senate, but instead of real results, Republicans chose to play politics.  Well, politics is the art of the possible and today, Republicans rejected possible job creation in favor of politics.”
 
After long debate on the mining legislation, today’s vote was a firm rejection of the attempts of Republicans to pass a bill.  Instead of reaching for bipartisanship and offering a vote on a winning solution, the Republicans chose to ignore that amendment.  Taylor noted that Democrats, who have been calling for a responsible mining bill, are ready with a new bill to avoid Republican “shenanigans” on this issue.
 
“Democrats want nothing more than meaningful legislation that will guarantee jobs. I have cosponsored Senate Bill 542 which will accomplish the needed mining reforms that will allow mining job creation but not recklessly harm our environment.  In these last days of the session, we will work hard to show Wisconsin that Democrats are ready to pass mining legislation,” Taylor concluded.
 
Senate Bill 542 is pending in the Joint Committee on Finance.  It remains the only legislation with a committed 17 votes needed to pass in the Senate.