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While Mr. Walker wasn’t in Washington, his budget showdown was a hot topic among the state chief executives in Washington for their annual national conference.

Appearing on CNN’s “State of the Union,” Florida Gov. Rick Scott and Connecticut Gov. Dannel P. Malloy — each of whom also is facing a $3 billion budget shortfall in his own state — defended their differing approaches.

Mr. Scott, tackling his first budget since winning the Florida governor’s post last year, has vowed he will close the state’s budget gap without raising taxes.

“People in Florida believe [state government] has enough money. We just need to spend it better,” said Mr. Scott, a Republican.

Mr. Malloy, a Democratic former mayor who also is in his first term, said his proposal includes tax increases and spending cuts to close the budget gap. “I’ve asked for shared sacrifice — and that includes unions,” Mr. Malloy said.

He repeated his contention that public-employee unions have to make concessions because of the current economy in Connecticut and elsewhere, but he was sharply critical of the partisan fight in Madison.

“Do I think the Democrats look great in this? No,” he said. “Do I think what’s happening in Wisconsin is a travesty? Yes. We should not be attacking people’s rights to join organizations. I mean, it’s un-American … I think people use the tools that they have, and in this case, preventing a quorum from taking place is one of those tools.”

But Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, appearing on ABC’s “This Week,” was less charitable, telling host Jake Tapper that the Democratic lawmakers who fled Madison are “despicable.”