Capitol Notes: Vos Predicts Evers' Marijuana Proposal Has Little Chance Of Passing
Assembly Speaker Robin Vos said last week he gives Democratic Gov. Tony Evers' plan to legalize marijuana, and decriminalize small amounts, a 10 percent chance of passing the Republican-controlled Legislature. Vos called the proposal a "very difficult sell" because it would decriminalize recreational marijuana.
Evers plans to introduce the proposal as part of the state budget later this week, but Vos says the item will be removed. In this week's "Capitol Notes" conversation, WUWM's Marti Mikkelson asked JR Ross, of wispolitics.com, if the proposal would then be introduced as a separate bill.
Ross says whether the plan is in the budget or not, it's probably not going to pass this session. While Vos has indicated backing for medical marijuana, Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald has said repeatedly that he's won't even support that part of the bill.
Ross says he doesn't think any Democrats would cross over and vote with Republicans to override Evers' veto of a middle class tax cut the GOP passed earlier this month. In fact, he doesn't think legislative leaders will even schedule a vote to override. Republicans want to tap a surplus to pay for the cut, while Evers wants to all-but eliminate a manufacturing tax credit. Evers plans to introduce his plan in his budget address Thursday night.
Ross thinks the state Senate may not take a vote to confirm former transportation lobbyist Craig Thompson, Evers' pick to lead the Wisconsin DOT. That would mean Thompson would serve, in the absence of a vote. Thompson testified before a Senate committee last week that Evers' budget will increase funding for roads, but he didn't specify where it would come from. We'll find out Thursday night.