MSNBC is reporting that embattled Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, who is in a tug-of-war over collective-bargaining rights, is forging ahead with the Tuesday release of his two-year spending plan that will include major cuts to schools and local governments to help close a projected $3.6 billion budget shortfall. Walker has confirmed that he will propose cutting education aid by about $900 million, or 9 percent statewide. Walker's proposal sparked protests that have been ongoing since Feb. 15.
For the second time since the controversy erupted, President Barack Obama weighed into the debate on Monday, criticizing the Wisconsin plan without mentioning it by name. "I don't think it does anybody any good when public employees are denigrated or vilified or their rights are infringed upon," Obama told the nation's governors gathered in Washington. "We're not going to attract the best teachers for our kids, for example, if they only make a fraction of what other professionals make," the president said.
Republicans believe that spending in the public sector has to be reined in to close budget shortfalls. What about also holding the private sector accountable? While spending does need to be curbed, do Republicans always have to start with women and children? President Obama makes a good point: Why would anyone want to teach in the U.S. if he or she will not be paid decent wages? It looks as if we in the U.S. might have our own version of brain drain when it comes to teachers. Why work in the U.S. when you can go abroad and make much more money, be valued for the role you play in educating citizens and actually be respected?
Read more at MSNBC.