Thursday, October 23rd, 2014

Our procrastinator's guide to the 2010 race for governor

Democrat Tom Barrett and Republican Scott Walker at a recent debate
Democrat Tom Barrett and Republican Scott Walker at a recent debate

Procrastinators, pay attention, please.

If you are still undecided on whether Democrat Tom Barrett or  Republican Scott Walker -- or neither -- deserves your vote in the 2010 governor's race, PolitiFact Wisconsin offers a brief tour of highlights from Friday's final debate.

Much of what the candidates sparred over during the We the People-Wisconsin 2010 Gubernatorial Debate recycled charges and counter-charges from the past several months.

Focusing on statements we have previously tested, here what the candidates said -- and what we've said.

Taxes: Walker, the Milwaukee County executive, criticized Barrett, the Milwaukee mayor, for raising Milwaukee property taxes and fees by $21 million in the 2010 city budget. We examined Barrett's tax record in an item based on a statement by President Barack Obama.

Barrett countered that Walker's proposed property tax levy for his 2011 county budget is $39 million higher than Walker's first budget in 2003. Here's our look at Walker's tax-and-spend record.

Crime: Barrett's campaign website falsely claimed -- until our item revealed it and he corrected it -- that violent crime has fallen dramatically on his watch. He was more careful in Friday's debate, saying it's fallen "in the last several years.”

Long-term care for seniors: Walker dusted off his claim -- with more precision this time -- that he eliminated a Family Care waiting list for senior citizens. We waded into those waters in this item.

Stem cell research and birth control: Barrett pounded away on both topics,  trying to portray Walker as "out of the mainstream.” Walker said little in response.

We looked these topics from a variety of angles, including Tom Barrett's claim Walker would ban stem cell research and Walker's assertion that scientists agree the true potential lies with adult stem cells, not embryonic ones.

On birth control, we looked at a claim by Planned Parenthood against Walker and an even stronger one by Barrett.

Pensions and debt: Walker defended his decision to back a $400 million borrow-and-invest plan to fund the county's overloaded pension system. Barrett touted the health of the city's pension fund. Check out our look at the pension issue.

Economic development: Barrett repeated his claim about Walker shutting down his office of economic development during the recession and Walker again touted growth at the airport.

BadgerCare: Barrett alleged Walker would cut the program. We looked at the question when we evaluated an ad by the Greater Wisconsin Committee.