MADISON, Wis. (AP) _ The state Assembly has passed the state budget on a 55-42 vote. The vote came abruptly on Wednesday after Democrats surprisingly decided against offering any amendments.
Democratic Minority Leader Peter Barca says Republicans were clear no changes would be made, so Democrats instead were going to take their opposition directly to the public. Democrats add that their decision not to debate the state budget was part of a strategy, not surrender.
Democrats prepared 211 amendments going into Wednesday's floor session but didn't introduce any of them. Barca was the only Democrat who spoke against the spending plan before majority Republicans adopted it.
The $70 billion budget would cut income taxes by $650 million, expand private school vouchers statewide and reject a federally funded expansion of Medicaid.