If you were watching the Wisconsin election results last night, you’ve no doubt heard that taxpayer rights won against union scare tactics. Governor Scott Walker beat back a union-funded attempt at a recall with 53% of the vote.
On top of such obvious hysterics, many liberals attacked the money. Ed Schultz—a man whose lack of journalistic balance would make Keith Olbermann look impartial—lambasted the disparity between the two campaigns, claiming that the only reason Barrett lost was because he was outspent by $27 million.
So a $27 million gap is what it takes to “buy” an election, huh? Perhaps Mr. Schultz, or any other liberal with a short memory, would like to recount for us exactly how much unions and interest groups outspent their opposition on Issue 2 just a few short months ago…
Oh, right. That was a $30 million disparity.
By Ed Schultz’s own logic, unions bought the election last year. But, of course, liberals still cry foul. You see, it’s the interest groups that funded Scott Walker, while individuals funded the anti-Issue 2 campaign.
In other words, attacking the money isn’t going to work unless liberals are willing to admit they bought Issue 2. Any takers? Didn’t think so.
So what really was the difference for Walker that gave him the edge in Wisconsin, while Senate Bill 5 was defeated here in Ohio? Bytor3BP answered that pretty succinctly last night on Twitter:
The cold, hard truth of the matter is that Senate Bill 5 was never given a chance to show what it could have done for Ohio’s communities and schools. Unions attacked it right and left, saying it would lead to death and destruction; however, our fact checking—and PolitiFact’s as well—showed they were lying at every turn.
The facts bore out that Issue 2 would have put Ohio in a better position. Just look at the amazing things Walker has done in Wisconsin, with the Badger State saving over $1 billion and another 6500 teachers from being laid off.
Given the opportunity to work, Senate Bill 5 would have made Ohio a safer place to live and work, better place to send our children to school, and a more attractive place for businesses to locate. Just like Wisconsin is today.
But that’s not where we’re at. Instead, if you picked up the Cincinnati Enquirer today, you found that the city is in debt, and potentially facing more layoffs.
Apply the reasonable reforms of Senate Bill 5 to the situation? By looking at just the AFSCME contract on file with the State Employment Relations Board—a contract that covers less than half of Cincinnati’s city workers—Senate Bill 5 would have saved taxpayers an estimated $13.7 million.
Simple pension and healthcare reforms would have put Cincinnati in a better position than it is today. Attacking that makes for an awfully tough sell to voters.
But in the end, that’s why unions spent so much in Ohio—they couldn’t afford to let taxpayers see the benefits that Senate Bill 5 would have brought to their communities. Because if voters had real-life examples of government reforms saving jobs and tax dollars, well, unions lose that fight every day, and twice on Tuesdays.
Actually, if you count those two California cities, that makes three.
Either way, union scare tactics don’t stand a chance against an educated electorate.