There’s only one circumstance that makes Gov. Phil Scott care about paid family leave: When it looks like the Legislature is going to pass a universal paid leave plan. That’s when he whips out his grossly inadequate substitute voluntary idea in hopes of peeling a few votes from the Dem/Prog supermajorities.
Scott first floated his voluntary concept four and a half years ago as an alternative to a universal program. A little less than four years ago, he and New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu announced a two-state approach meant to give the program a sounder financial footing. That idea never went anywhere because Vermont lawmakers didn’t buy it and the (then-Republican dominated) New Hampshire Legislature wasn’t interested.
At the time, Scott insisted he could make a go of it in Vermont alone. But he made no apparent efforts to do so.
In 2020, Scott was again offering the voluntary idea but offering no specifics. That situation stayed the same… until now, when his party has taken a shellacking at the polls and he faces veto-proof majorities in the House and Senate. Now he’s got a plan.Continue reading