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“Isn’t enough votes:” 10 weeks overdue, budget deal appears to be falling apart in Senate

MADISON -- There was budget drama in Madison Wednesday, September 13th as a deal to get a budget passed appeared to be on the verge of falling apart Wednesday night as Republican senators appeared to be holding out 'yes' votes.

A vote could occur as late as midnight. Senators Wednesday night said they still don't have the votes.

"This is the budget I've been waiting for," Rep. Scott Krug, R-Nekoosa said.

"I find it incredible you can all sit there and think this is the best think since sliced bread," Rep. Christine Sinicki, D-Milwaukee said.

Lawmakers made their case for and against the budget proposal 10 weeks overdue. On Wednesday, as votes were set to be cast, drama was building inside the Capitol, as the deal appeared to be falling apart among Republicans.

"This budget is sad excuse. There isn't enough votes in the Senate to pass it," Amanda Stuck, D-Appleton said.

For weeks, Republicans in the Senate and Assembly who control power in Madison have bickered over how to pay for the state's transportation budget.

Last week, a deal that would impose new taxes on hybrid and electric vehicles and repeal the state's prevailing wage law. It was thought to have ended the stalemate.

However, Wednesday night, Republican senators said they don't have the votes.

Assembly Speaker Robin Vos

"I am not going to be held hostage by individuals at the end who had nine months to lay out what their priorities are, and they wait until the last 24 hours to say, 'here's what else I want,'" Assembly Speaker Robin Vos said.

Vos said he isn't happy, and he's stepping up the pressure.

With the fate of the proposal unknown, on Wednesday, the Assembly planned to vote on it anyway, where it was expected to pass Wednesday night. That puts the ball in the Senate's court.

"We are not going to allow individual senators to begin renegotiating the entire budget," Vos said.

Senate Republicans met Wednesday and emerged with no deal in place. Senate leaders have scheduled a vote for Friday, hoping the holdouts come around.