By Benjamin Yount
Center Square News Service
Wisconsin’s governor is daring Republican lawmakers to put up or shut up about his order that limits crowds at bars, restaurants and stores across the state.
“I assume you know the Legislature could convene at any time – today even – on this issue at your discretion," the governor wrote in a three-page letter to Republican leaders Monday. “So, I presume if you and your members were to so strongly and seriously object to our public health emergency despite our present crisis, you would exercise your authority to convene the Legislature to end it imminently.”
The governor said Republicans should at least tell voters how they would vote if the issue ever came to the floor.
“I am sure you and your members share my concern about being transparent to the people we represent,” Evers added. “And that it is not you or your members’ intent to delay such a vote until after the election, allowing sitting legislators to avoid responsibility or accountability for such a vote at the ballot box this November.”
The governor’s letter came after Sen Van Wanggaard, R-Racine, said he expected to vote on the governor's order after Election Day.
“I can tell you that’s what will happen,” Wanggaard told reporters after a statehouse hearing on the governor’s order Monday.
The governor offered to meet with Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, R-Rochester, and Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, R-Juneau. The three have not sat down together for months. Republicans have accused the governor of cutting them out of his emergency orders.
Evers on Monday, however, put conditions on any meeting with the Republican leaders.
“I ask that you bring to our meeting concrete options supported by science and public health that our administration can take to save lives and keep people safe that you, your caucuses, and your allies will support,” the governor wrote.
Vos and Fitzgerald did not offer a comment on the governor’s offer.