MADISON (WKOW) -- Republican candidate for governor Mark Neumann accused his opponent, Scott Walker, of spending too much as Milwaukee County executive.
Walker says Neumann should go back to school and brush up on mathematics.
Neumann came to the Capitol armed with charts and graphs that purported to show Walker had proposed a 35 percent budget increase in Milwaukee County since taking over in 2002.
"I understood when I got into this race that the devastating increases in spending under Jim Doyle had destroyed our economy in Wisconsin," Neumann said. "I will admit I was surprised to learn it was even worse in Milwaukee County under Scott Walker."
If elected, Neumann promised to shave 1 percent from every department's budget, adjusted for inflation. But he refused to give specific examples of where cuts needed to be made, saying only that services would not be affected.
"You guys, I'm a small business owner," he said. "This whole conversation that we're having is so farfetched for a small business owner. We had to reduce our costs by 15 percent."
"Interesting for a guy who was once a math teacher, apparently he needs to go back to school and do a little bit more math," Walker said.
In a statewide conference call Walker noted that he had not proposed a property tax increase in any of the last eight budgets, and that he'd reduced the number of Milwaukee County workers by 23 percent.
But at the same time Walker couldn't refute the 35 percent figure, only saying that the county's operating budget was lower last year.
Meanwhile, Tuesday was the first day candidates could circulate nominating petitions. Candidates for governor need to submit between 2,000 and 4,000 signatures no later than July 13.
A spokesman for Doyle did not return our calls.