Calling school choice "a critical, perhaps the most critical issue" facing Wisconsin, an influential conservative says he is disappointed with the deal cut by top legislative Republicans. 

James Klauser was Tommy Thompson’s top aide  --secretary of administration – and thus present at the creation of school choice in Wisconsin. He is now chairman of the Wisconsin Policy Research Institute and he remains highly influential in conservative and GOP circles. 

Over the weekend, Klauser wrote to key legislators about the choice "compromise" that drops many of the key elements of Governor Scott Walker’s proposal.  The deal cuts the increase in proposed choice funding, eliminates special needs children, and caps statewide participation at 500 students the first year and 1000 the second. (For more details, go here.) 

Writes Klauser:

I am very unhappy with the purported compromise on school vouchers.  An expansion of the voucher program together with increased funding,  as the governor suggested,  is critical, perhaps the most critical issue, for Wisconsin's future.

It is a Republican approach. It  goes back at least as far as Warren Knowles' Education Commission,which was chaired by a person from the Neenah area: Wiliam Kellett.

Thank You for everything else you're doing.

Jim Klauser

The "deal" may yet be tweaked, but a final vote is by the Joint Finance Committee is expected Tuesday.