Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Ebenezer Kleefisch's past ghost makes timely return

[Updated from 12/20] You may remember that State Rep. Joel Kleefisch, (R-Oconomowoc), let a wealthy donor friend draft legislative language that would have relieved the friend of paying some child support payments he felt were too high.

Because for Republicans in WalkerWorld, it's important not only to hold state power by any means necessary - - gerrymandering with secretly-drawn maps, boatloads of dark money - - but also to use it selectively so your friends have an extra gob of resources of their choosing.

Kleefisch withdrew the bill amid an uproar over special interest access to legislating, but the scheme is back just in the nick of time this giving holiday season in the form of high-earner child support payment rule changes that would turn over some calculation decisions to a judge.

Because the wealthy need these kinds of special considerations, or flexibility, as it's known in WalkerWorldspeak:

A state agency is seeking to reduce the amount of child support wealthy parents pay — a proposal similar to one made by a Republican lawmaker three years ago that was withdrawn amid significant pushback 
Parents who earn between $300,000 and $500,000 annually would be required to pay a smaller percentage of their monthly income in child support than what current law prescribes, according to changes to how the state handles child support proposed by the Department of Children and Families (DCF).
I'm not carrying any brief for children of wealthy parents, and Charles Dickens didn't have them precisely in mind when he made "Scrooge" synonymous with "miserly" in The Christmas Carol.

I'm just pointing out that in Wisconsin under Scott Walker and one-party GOP rule, there are no limits to special interest favors - - whether routed to mining companies, high-volume well permit holders, large, regulated dairy feedlot operators, upper-income and corporate tax filers, as free DNR staff time for a high-end golf course developer, or in sweetheart loans to WEDC applicants - - that the state will hand out to insiders or donors.

Update - - Now we learn that an advisory committee recommended against what Walker's people are now pushing.

For these folks, Walker is their not-so-secret Santa.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This is absolutely unbelievable. Why should super rich people be given a break on child support while the average guy must pay the full percentage. Why is a state agency making this a matter of concern. "Pay for Play' continues to be the governing style in Wisconsin. When I was divorced many years ago with two children I paid 25% of my gross salary which worked out to 40% of my net earnings because support payments come off the top not after taxes are taken out. I was left with $295 per month to live on after I paid my apartment rent. My ex -wife was able to take annual vacations to Mexico. After I remarried the support agency took 25% of a part-time job I had taken and threatened to demand money from my new wife's earnings. Anyone making $300,000-$500,000 can pay the same percentage as the rest of us and still have more than I had to live on. I always felt that I owed IT TO CHILDREN to pay the amount required by law so they could live as close as possible to the income level that existed when I was present in the home.