Gov, Scott Walker, right, speaks to a worker Thursday, Dec. 13, 2018, at Kimberly Clark's Cold Spring plant in Neenah, Wis. Walker executed a $28 million deal Thursday to save nearly 400 jobs at the Kimberly-Clark Corp. plant, using powers that his Democratic successor would no longer have under legislation approved last week during a lame-duck session.(Mark Hoffman/Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel via AP)

The Latest: Kaul calls lame-duck bills 'stunningly bad'

December 14, 2018 - 2:10 pm

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The Latest on lame duck legislation signed by Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (all times local):

2 p.m.

Democratic Attorney General-elect Josh Kaul is calling lame-duck legislation Republican Gov. Scott Walker signed into law "stunningly bad" but isn't saying if he'll challenge the changes in court.

The bills dramatically reduce Kaul's powers. The legislation allows lawmakers to intervene in state lawsuits, eliminates the state Justice Department's solicitor general's office, requires Kaul get lawmakers' approval before settling cases and sends all settlement money to the state's general fund rather than to the Justice Department.

Walker signed the bills Friday. Kaul issued a statement Friday saying the "stunningly bad" legislation is designed to diminish the impact of the November election on Republicans.

Kaul has predicted the legislation would spark multiple lawsuits. He didn't say in the statement if he would sue, however. His spokeswoman, Gillian Drummond, didn't immediately reply to an email.

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1 p.m.

Gov. Scott Walker says he plans to remain in Wisconsin after leaving office in 24 days.

Walker spoke briefly about his future Friday after signing three bills into law weakening the powers of his Democratic successor Tony Evers.

The former presidential candidate says he's had a lot of opportunities in recent weeks to take jobs in Washington, but he plans to remain in Wisconsin. He did not say what those opportunities were.

Walker ran for a third term, saying he had no interest in joining Republican President Donald Trump's administration after his victory in 2016.

Since his loss to Evers in November, Walker has not said what he plans to do. His term ends on Jan. 7.

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12:50 p.m.

Democratic Wisconsin Gov.-elect Tony Evers is ripping Republican incumbent Scott Walker for signing lame-duck legislation that weakens the governor's office and restricts early voting.

Walker signed the bills Friday in Green Bay. Evers issued a statement saying Walker is ignoring the will of voters who elected him. He says the people asked politicians on Election Day to solve problems, not "pick petty, political fights."

He says the people of the state expect more than what they've gotten over the last few weeks.

The measures prohibit Evers from withdrawing from a multistate lawsuit challenging the Affordable Care Act. The package also shields the state's job-creation agency from Evers' control until September and limits his ability to enact administrative rules.

The legislation also limits early in-person voting to two weeks before an election.

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12:20 p.m.

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has signed a sweeping package of Republican-authored lame-duck legislation that restricts early voting and weakens the incoming Democratic governor and attorney general.

The measures restrict early in-person voting to two weeks before an election. The legislation gives Republicans control of the state jobs creation agency, blocks Democratic Gov.-elect Tony Evers from withdrawing Wisconsin from a multistate lawsuit challenging the Affordable Care Act.

The bills also eliminate the state Justice Department's solicitor general's office and allow legislators to intervene in state lawsuits, ensuring they can defend Republican policies if Democratic Attorney General-elect Josh Kaul won't.

Walker ignored pleas from Democrats and some Republicans to veto the measures, saying enacting them tarnishes his legacy.

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9:05 a.m.

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker plans to take action on a sweeping package of Republican-authored lame-duck legislation that restricts early voting and weakens the powers of the incoming Democratic governor and attorney general.

Walker's office announced the event at noon Friday at a Green Bay state office building. Walker has repeatedly signaled support for the bills and downplayed bipartisan concerns that they're a power grab.

Walker has also said he intends to make some partial vetoes, without giving specifics.

The measures give Republicans control of the state jobs creation agency and block Gov.-elect Tony Evers (EE'-vers) from withdrawing Wisconsin from a multistate lawsuit challenging the Affordable Care Act.

They also prevent Evers from seeking to withdraw a federal waiver allowing the state to force Medicaid recipients to work to receive benefits.

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