Daily Archives: July 26, 2018

Baldwin says she raised $1.2 million in pre-primary period


U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin’s campaign says she raised nearly $1.2 million between July 1-25.

But the campaign did not provide figures for cash on hand or money spent over the pre-primary period.

The Madison Dem’s fundraising total for the period exceeds the just more than $1 million GOP U.S. Senate contender Kevin Nicholson pulled in over the second quarter of the year. It also outpaces fellow Republican candidate state Sen. Leah Vukmir’s $668,788 raised from April to June.

For comparison, in the 2016 election cycle, former U.S. Sen. Russ Feingold over the same period brought in $780,000.

Bebris campaign: To release plan to address jail audit

Outagamie County Sheriff Candidate to reveal a multi-point plan to address findings highlighted in the recent audit of the Outagamie County Jail at a public event on Monday July 30, 2018.

July 26, 2018 – Outagamie County Sheriff Candidate, Alex Bebris will hold a public event to reveal details on his plan to address the findings from the recent audit of the Outagamie County Jail. The event will be hosted at the Appleton Public Library in room AB on Monday July 30, 2018 at 2:30 pm. Public and press welcome. A group of citizens who have concerns about operations and healthcare in the jail will also be in attendance.

Alex Bebris has more than 30 years law enforcement experience in private, municipal and county agencies. His extensive background includes training at FBI’s Law Enforcement Development Program, Northwestern University school of Police Staff and Command as well as several federal certifications including Homeland Security and the U.S. Department of Justice. For more information on this event or candidate Alex Bebris, please see BebrisForSheriff.com or call (920) 659-0249.

Dane County Exec. Parisi: Announces retirement of Mickey Beil

Today Dane County Executive Parisi announced the retirement of Mickey Beil, Dane County’s Legislative Lobbyist. Beil has served 30 years in the Wisconsin legislative arena including 17 for Dane County. Her last day for the County will be August 31, 2018.

“Mickey has been a true advocate for the citizens of Dane County and the values we hold dear,” said Dane County Executive Joe Parisi. “Mickey is a tireless public servant, advocate for justice and a friend.”

“As Mickey moves on to her well-earned next adventures, I want to thank her for her dedication to Dane County,” said County Board Chair Sharon Corrigan. “Mickey’s experience in the legislative arena and knowledge of County government have been a boon to Dane County. Her fierce advocacy will be missed.”

Mickey started her career in 1974 as a Special Education Teacher at Freeport High School, Freeport, IL. She worked in the Illinois legislative and political action arenas before moving to Wisconsin.

“It was an honor to serve the citizens, elected officials and dedicated public servants of Dane County,” said Beil. “We have the best staff in the state of Wisconsin and we are rich in great people.”

DC Wrap: Sensenbrenner’s office says eminent domain bill that cleared House wouldn’t impact Foxconn

Welcome to our weekly DC Wrap, where we write about Wisconsin’s congressional delegation. Sign up here to receive the newsletter directly.

Quotes of the week, July 20-26

I think when you look at President Trump, you have to look at what he does, not what he says.
– U.S. Rep. Glenn Grothman, R-Glenbeulah, on “Upfront with Mike Gousha,” a WisPolitics.com partner. He also said it’s “a good thing” President Trump is talking to Russian President Vladimir Putin, and that Trump’s overall policy toward Russia is positive.

See a write-up of the interview.

Bottom line with the Progressive Caucus, while the largest values-based caucus in Congress is probably not been seen as having the biggest muscle flexed, right now we’re working out, and getting sweaty and doing all the work it takes to be ready for January. So I think this organization should by January be completely ready so that whether we take the majority or not, we are going to be in a very different position than the caucus has ever been before.
– U.S. Rep. Mark Pocan, co-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, in a news conference after unveiling the group’s People’s Budget. The document calls for making a $2 trillion investment in infrastructure; raising taxes to 49 percent for those earning more than a billion dollars; and letting states move to single-payer health care systems, among other things.  

This shallow political stunt stands in the way of justice and does nothing more than deepen mistrust and division in this country.
– U.S. Rep. Gwen Moore, D-Milwaukee, in a tweet following news Wednesday night that articles of impeachment had been filed against Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein. No other Wisconsin House members responded to requests for comment sent late last night, but a House GOP aide said the way the situation is “being handled at this point is not privileged. That could change.”


This week’s news

— A bill from U.S. Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner to limit the state and federal governments’ eminent domain power regarding economic development has cleared the House.

Still, Sensenbrenner’s office said it doesn’t anticipate the ““Private Property Rights Protection Act” — if signed into law — would affect Foxconn’s current development project in southeastern Wisconsin, but did not elaborate.  

The bill would prohibit state and local governments that receive federal economic development funds from using economic development as a justification for taking property from one person and giving to another private entity. It passed the chamber on a voice vote.

According to the legislation, any state or local government that violates this prohibition would be ineligible to receive federal economic development funds for two years. Additionally, the legislation would bar the federal government from exercising eminent domain powers for economic development.

Sensenbrenner said in a statement that this legislation would restore individual private property rights put in jeopardy by the 2005 Supreme Court decision in Kelo v. City of New London, which established that the taking of private property to sell for private development qualified as “public use” under the Fifth Amendment’s Takings Clause.

“The framers of the Constitution would be horrified by the paradigm created by Kelo: a government free to seize and transfer private property from individuals with fewer resources to private entities with more,” he said.

The Menomonee Falls Republican emphasized in a speech on the House floor the need to stop the country’s “long history of eminent domain abuses, particularly in low-income and often predominantly minority neighborhoods.”

“The protection of property rights is one of the most important tenets of our government,” Sensenbrenner said. “The Private Property Rights Protection Act is needed to restore to all Americans the property rights the Supreme Court invalidated.”

— Wisconsin’s U.S. senators are knocking President Trump’s tariffs. But they aren’t taking a firm stance on the administration’s announcement of a $12 billion emergency relief package for farmers.

The package, announced by the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture this week, was developed at Trump’s request in order to stave off the impact of retaliatory tariffs imposed by several countries in response to the administration’s trade policies.

The plan includes measures to make incremental payments to producers of certain food products; buy surplus product; and provide aid in developing new export markets.

After news of the Trump administration’s aid package broke, GOP U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson backed the president’s efforts to address Chinese trade practices but knocked the “self-inflicted damage” the American economy has suffered due to the ongoing trade dispute with several of the country’s trading partners.

“Instead of throwing money at a problem we’ve helped create, the better option is to take action to make it easier for our farmers — and manufacturers — to sell their goods at fair prices to consumers around the world,” Johnson said.

The statement follows comments the Oshkosh Republican made to Politico Tuesday likening Trump’s trade policies to a “Soviet-type economy.”

A Johnson spokesman, however, didn’t say specifically whether he supports or opposes to $12 billion relief package.

Dem U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin also joined Johnson in criticizing the effects of the tariffs on Wisconsin’s agricultural industry.

Baldwin before the announcement Tuesday wrote a letter to several administration officials railing against the effects of the tariffs on Wisconsin farmers and calling on the administration to give “immediate support” to farmers affected by retaliatory tariffs and to “include a strategy to maintain the strength of agricultural exports.

But a spokeswoman after the announcement didn’t respond to questions on whether the senator supports or opposes the $12 billion measure.

“Our farmers are struggling and trade wars are not helping, they are hurting our Wisconsin economy. That’s why I called on the Trump Administration to use the authority Congress provided to take immediate action to support Wisconsin farmers and to put in place a plan to maintain the strength of agriculture exports,” Baldwin said in a statement Tuesday afternoon.

— Baldwin this week also touted the House’s passage of her bill aiming to boost palliative and hospice care.

The “Palliative Care and Hospice Education and Training Act” would provide additional training for palliative medicine and bolster research in the area.

“It’s time for the Senate to take action and get this done so we can help grow and sustain our health care workforce to safeguard and improve the quality of care for the growing number of patients with serious or life-threatening illnesses,” she said in a statement.

— U.S. Rep. Mike Gallagher has introduced legislation aiming to end the “excessive amount of time” members of Congress spend fundraising for reelection rather than working on behalf of their constituents.

The Green Bay Republican and U.S. Rep. Rick Nolan, D-Minn., introduced last week the “Go to Washington, Go to Work Act” that would prohibit members of Congress and congressional candidates from attending, speaking and participating in political fundraising activities while Congress is in session.

If enacted, the legislation would apply to candidates for Congress and sitting members of the House and Senate, but it would not influence state or other local elected offices.

Gallagher said in a statement that members of Congress have strayed from the principle that government should be by and for the people and not for government special interests. This deviation, he said, has made the country’s problems worse and limited the public’s trust in government’s ability to fix them.

“The common sense reforms in this bill are critical to helping reduce the influence of money in politics and get Congress working again,” he said.

The first-term rep has introduced other initiatives aiming to overhaul congressional practices, including legislation that would limit House representatives to serving no more six terms and senators two.

Gallagher also sponsored the “Do Your Job Act” aimed at increasing congressional productivity by putting limits on congressional recesses and adjournments prior the passage of spending bills.

— U.S. Rep. Sean Duffy and U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson sent a letter to President Trump requesting a prompt response to Gov. Scott Walker’s call for federal disaster relief assistance in northwestern Wisconsin.

In the letter sent this week, the Republican congressmen said they support Walker’s aid request following heavy June flooding in Ashland, Bayfield, Burnett, Clark, Douglas and Iron counties that killed two Wisconsinites and damaged public roads and buildings.

The pair said in the letter that the federal damage assessment of the area revealed the total cost of debris clearance, emergency protective measures and damage to public infrastructure was in excess of $13.1 million, adding the “severity” and impact of the damage “warrants the use of federal resources to facilitate recovery operations.”

“We fully support Governor Walker’s request for federal assistance in this difficult time,” they said in the letter.

Walker last Friday sent a letter to Trump asking for a federal disaster declaration for the six counties.

— U.S. Rep. Ron Kind is calling on Gov. Scott Walker to add staffers to the state Elections Commission ahead of the upcoming elections.

The La Crosse Dem wrote in a letter Wednesday the state “must ensure all efforts are being made to defend our elections from foreign adversaries” following Russian attempts to hack Wisconsin’s election system before the 2016 general election.  

The commission previously tried to get approval for three new staffers it said were necessary to ensure election security. But the feds later this spring allocated $7 million in elections security funding to the state, leading to the commission to withdraw its request. Instead, the commission looked to use part of the grant to hire six new staffers.

But a recent Wisconsin State Journal report notes the Department of Administration hasn’t yet hired for those positions, according to two commissioners.

In the current state budget, the Legislature had approved adding five additional positions to the commission, but Walker vetoed those.

— Kind has also signed onto a bill to increase access to substance abuse treatment centers.

The bill, called the “Medicaid Coverage for Addiction Recovery Expansion (CARE) Act,” would increase the number of Medicare-funded treatment centers and develop a $50 million youth inpatient addiction treatment grant program aimed at assisting those under 21.

“The Medicaid CARE Act targets two important tools to combat Wisconsin’s growing drug epidemic: prevention and treatment,” Kind said in a statement.

Posts of the week


‘UpFront’: Grothman praises Trump’s Russia policy

Ron Johnson on aid to tariff-hit farmers: ‘Becoming more like a Soviet-type economy here’

Johnson blasts Trump on trade, calls it ‘Soviet’ economy

‘Like a Soviet-type economy’: GOP free traders unload on Trump

Ron Johnson vows oversight of Trump’s family unification effort

Baldwin joins Johnson in writing Trump letter over tariffs

Sen. Tammy Baldwin Says Thousands Of Wisconsinites Can’t Watch Packers On TV

Challenger Leah Vukmir cites 22-year-old vote in attack on Tammy Baldwin over pledge, flag anthem

Area congressman share thoughts on President Trump’s comments in Helsinki

Gary George vs Gwen Moore, and 2 Republicans face off, in congressional primary

Nancy Pelosi pushes for national health care plan during Milwaukee visit

GOP Rep. Sean Duffy Attacks American Trading Partners Committing ‘Economic Terrorism’ Against the U.S.

Rep. Duffy: Countries Committing ‘Economic Terrorism’ Against US With Tariffs

Gov. Walker: Orders flags to half-staff honoring the life of Milwaukee Police Department officer Michael Michalski

Contact: Amy Hasenberg, (608) 266-2839

MADISON – Governor Scott Walker today ordered flags of the United States and the State of Wisconsin to be flown at half-staff in honor of Milwaukee Police Department Officer Michael Michalski of the Special Investigations Division who died in the line of duty on Wednesday, July 25, 2018. This order is effective immediately and ends at sunset on the date of interment.

Governor Walker released the following statement:

“Tonette and I mourn the death of Officer Michael Michalski who died in the line of duty while protecting the people he served for 20 years. His passing is another painful reminder of the absolute commitment and sacrifices our law enforcement officers make to protect our communities every day. Our hearts go out to his family and the entire Milwaukee Police Department family. His memory and dedication to our state will always be remembered.”

Governor Walker’s flag lowering executive order is here.

Independent Business Association of Wisconsin: Endorses Sheriff Richard Schmidt for Milwaukee County sheriff

Milwaukee, Wis. – July 26, 2018 – The Board of Directors of the Independent BusinessAssociation of Wisconsin (IBAW) endorsed Sheriff Richard Schmidt for Milwaukee County Sheriff today.

“The Board of Directors unanimously voted to support Sheriff Richard Schmidt for Milwaukee County Sheriff. Sheriff Schmidt is the obvious choice for this position based on his experience and years of knowledge of the department and the Milwaukee County Jail system. Additionally, his non- political, law and order approach to that office is precisely what Milwaukee County needs,” said Steve Kohlmann, IBAW’s Executive Director.

The IBAW memberships encompasses manufacturing, service, distribution, healthcare, technology, financial, consulting and others. A statewide, non-profit association, IBAW members and sponsors employ thousands of Wisconsin workers.

Since 1973, the Independent Business Association of Wisconsin (IBAW) was formed for small business owners to engage in conversation relating to legislation impacting the bottom-line costs of businesses throughout Wisconsin. IBAW is a venue for high level CEOs, CFOs, COOs, other
upper management and entrepreneurs to network, exchange business ideas, and become educated and involved on issues which impact their business. The mission of IBAW is to advance business prosperity through insightful programming, executive networking and member-driven public
policy and advocacy. IBAW is time well spent!

For additional information, contact Steve Kohlmann, IBAW Executive Director, via email at [email protected]

Milwaukee County Board: Urges more transit options to Foxconn

Contact: Brian Rothgery, 414-278-4230 or [email protected]milwaukeecountywi.gov

 MILWAUKEE – The Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors urged County officials to start discussions on an agreement that could pave the way for a $4.5 million investment in dedicated bus service between Milwaukee, Racine, and the new Foxconn factory today.

Supervisors voted 16-1 to authorize the Abele administration – including the Milwaukee County Department of Transportation and the Milwaukee County Transit System (MCTS) –  to initiate discussions with Racine County, the State of Wisconsin, and Foxconn and pursue an agreement to provide the service, which was proposed by Chairman Theodore Lipscomb, Sr.

We need transit options that can connect Milwaukee workers to jobs at Foxconn before the jobs become available, or workers without adequate transportation likely won’t even apply. The County Board has declared that dedicated bus service to Foxconn is a priority of the county, and now it’s up to the County Executive and his administration to carry out the policy,” said Lipscomb.

The Southeastern Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission (SEWRPC) conducted an analysis of the proposed route at Lipscomb’s request, and found that more than 1,300 workers could take advantage of the bus service each day.

Chairman Lipscomb first invited Racine County and the State of Wisconsin to partner with Milwaukee County on the new service in March.

Lipscomb has recommended that the two counties and the state to agree to pool funds available after the sale of Midwest Airlines assets in late 2017, rather than litigate the distribution of those resources.

The three parties jointly entered into a credit assistance package for Midwest in 2003.

State and local leaders have highlighted need to connect workers in densely populated areas like Milwaukee and Racine to available jobs at Foxconn as a top priority.

 Policymakers and transit advocates are studying how to address the transportation challenges, but Lipscomb is the first to propose a large scale solution.

NextGen Wisconsin: To sponsor Women’s March ‘Creating an Agenda for Black Women’ event

CONTACT: NGA Press Office, 415-802-2423
or [email protected]

Power to the Polls Event Will Empower Women of Color to Organize their Communities Ahead of Midterm Elections

MilwaukeeWI — On SaturdayJuly 28, NextGen Wisconsin and the Women’s March will host a dialogue centered on uplifting the voices of Black women in politics. By holding this event aimed at creating an agenda for Black women, organizers hope to engage communities of color in a way that empowers, not tokenizes, their votes in the upcoming midterm election. This event is part of the Women’s March Power to the Polls stop in Milwaukee that will include a rally, performances, canvassing, phone banking, and workshops on organizing — and NextGen Wisconsin organizers will be on hand to pledge young Wisconsinites to vote in November.

With an initial investment of $2.5 million, NextGen Wisconsin is working to register, engage, and organize young voters across the state to defeat Scott Walker, defend Tammy Baldwin’s seat, and flip the First Congressional District. With 31 staff and fellows already on the ground, NextGen has already pledged over 10,000 Wisconsinites to vote in the upcoming elections.


NextGen Wisconsin
Women’s March Wisconsin

July 28th, 6:00 – 9:00 p.m.

Chic Underground Lounge
770 N Jefferson St.
Milwaukee, WI 53202

Rep. Brostoff: 2020 census citizen question could silence immigrant communities

Contact: Rep. Jonathan Brostoff, (608) 266-0650

MADISON – For the first time in almost 70 years, the 2020 U.S. Census may ask everyone living in the United States whether they are citizens. Contrary to the initial accounts on how officials came to this decision, newly disclosed government emails in a federal lawsuit show that just months into taking office the Trump Administration began discussing adding a citizen question. Rep. Brostoff released the following statement on this issue:

“Prior to this administration, the commitment to creating a fair and efficient census was not partisan. There was a common understanding of what was at stake: Equal representation for all at all levels of government and the annual distribution of about $800 billion a year in federal funds for things like schools, housing, and health care,” Brostoff said. “But now we are faced with an administration that continues to use nefarious tactics to further disenfranchise our underserved and underrepresented neighbors.

“In recent weeks, we’ve witnessed human rights violations against immigrants and their children at the border under Trump’s command. It is clear that his administration is using fear to intimidate and silence those seeking asylum in our country. Especially now, those who are undocumented or living in mixed status households may be less likely to complete the census, resulting in critical demographic information being reported inaccurately.

“You can take action on this issue. Right now, the U.S. Department of Commerce is requesting comments on the proposal to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census questionnaire. Please submit your comments online before August 7th at https://bit.ly/2tuHwgH and encourage others to do the same.

“I’m currently working with our bill drafters to create a resolution requiring that citizenship questions be banned from our census. I will continue to do all I can to ensure equal and fair representation for all.”

Rep. Crowley: Statement on death of Milwaukee police officer

Rep. David Crowley

MILWAUKEE, WI – Rep. David Crowley (D-Milwaukee) issued the following statement regarding the tragic death of a Milwaukee Police Officer killed yesterday in the line of the duty.

“There are no words or explanations to justify the tragic loss of life that occurred yesterday evening. My thoughts and prayers are with the family of the fallen officer, the entire Milwaukee Police Department, and anyone who was affected by this senseless act of violence.

“There is no greater sacrifice than that of those who give their life to protect and serve our communities and our country. Together we can and must do more to improve police and community relations and be advocates for safer neighborhoods, decreasing the chances of situations like this occurring and ensuring the safety of those who dedicate and risk their lives for the people of our great city.

“Today we all mourn for our fallen officer and pray for his loved ones as they deal with this monumental loss.”

Rep. Goyke: Honored by Milwaukee Housing Authority

Contact: Rep. Goyke, 608.266.0645

Recognition follows on Sheriff Sale Fairness Legislation signed into law that provides Wisconsin counties important tools to target bad actors and increase auction sale competition

MADISON – Yesterday Antonio Pérez, Executive Director of the Housing Authority of the City of Milwaukee, thanked Rep. Evan Goyke (D-Milwaukee) for his authorship of legislation that makes common sense changes to Wisconsin’s sheriff sale process. Rep. Goyke was recognized for introduction and passage of 2017 Act 208 and 2017 Act 339.

The legislation follows on reporting by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel titled Landlord Games, which uncovered a small number of delinquent landlords who acquire new rental properties at sheriff auctions and turn a profit by manipulating loopholes in the system, while the properties linger perpetually in poor condition holding down property values and adding to neighborhood instability.

· 2017 Act 208 enables counties to host (or contract with a licensed Wisconsin auctioneer) sales of foreclosed properties via an Internet-based auction making the process more accessible and transparent for bidders and investors in the neighborhoods that need them most.

· 2017 Act 339 prohibits a buyer from acquiring a new property at a sheriff sale if the buyer is already more than 120 days delinquent on property taxes or building code judgments.

Following the recognition, Rep. Goyke offered brief remarks.

“I thank the Milwaukee Housing Authority for this great honor,” said Rep. Goyke.

“I was proud to author these important pieces of legislation. During a visit to the courthouse I stood in the same room with people who already own hundreds of rental properties, on which they owe tens of thousands of dollars in taxes and fines, and watched as the government awarded them winning bids for new properties. That ends now.”

“These new laws will help stabilize neighborhoods, reduce crime, and increase property values in neighborhoods throughout the City and state that need it the most.”

Roys campaign: Releases video outlining benefits to legalizing cannabis in Wisconsin

Contact: Brian Evans, 630-217-7561
[email protected]

MADISON, WI — Today, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Kelda Roys released a video highlighting the positive impacts that legalization of cannabis for medical and adult recreational use can have in Wisconsin.

Roys’ video tells the story of a man, Heath Rush, who became addicted to opioids while experiencing back pain due to injury. Heath states that he feels he, “could have gotten through 90% of the back-pain without a single opiate if I just had medical-grade marijuana.”

A transcript of the video has been provided at the end of this release.

Kelda Roys released the following statement:

“Adults should be free to use marijuana without fear of prosecution. We need to stop using our criminal justice resources to prosecute and incarcerate people for cannabis use. We can earn revenue, improve Wisconsin’s agricultural economy, and help stop unequal enforcement that drives racial disparities in our criminal justice system. It’s time to legalize cannabis for recreational and medicinal use, and grow Wisconsin’s economy.”

To read more on Kelda’s plans to legalize cannabis, click here.

“It’s Time to Legalize Marijuana” Transcript:

Heath: I was an opera singer for several years… There was this one time where I had to jump off stage, and it made me blow a disc in my back. I did not have health insurance at the time – I couldn’t really go to the doctor and have a surgery at the time, so I had to medicate it.

The doctors put me on Vicodin. I begged them for an MRI. Finally, when they did it (the MRI) it turned out I did need surgery on my back. I got to where I could not get the opiate out of my system. I could not go more than two, three hours without popping a couple pills.

I didn’t even have the urge to take the opiate once I started smoking. I feel I could have gotten through 90% of the back-pain prior to surgery without a single opiate if I just had medical-grade marijuana.

Kelda Roys: I’m Kelda Roys and I’m running for governor of Wisconsin. It’s time for our state to legalize cannabis, both for medicinal purposes and for adult recreational uses. Thousands of Wisconsinites are suffering from chronic pain from muscle spasms. Cannabis can help alleviate those symptoms, relieve their suffering, and it’s often safer than alternatives like opioids.

Secondly, we’ve got a huge criminal justice problem in our state. We incarcerate too many people and we have some of the worst racial disparities in the nation. Now, legalizing cannabis isn’t going to solve our criminal justice problems, but it is certainly a step in the right direction.

Finally, legalizing cannabis can have a great impact on our economy. Think of all the family farmers in Wisconsin who are struggling to make ends meet. A cash crop like industrial hemp or cannabis can help them do that. Finally, the states that have legalized cannabis have seen an influx of hundreds of millions of dollars in new tax revenue. We can put that revenue to great use in Wisconsin on our schools, our roads, our healthcare system. I’m Kelda Roys, and it’s time to legalize cannabis in our state.

Schimel campaign: Launches first ad of summer

Contact: (262) 528-2086

Our Attorney General Highlights His Lifelong Focus on Child Advocacy and Concern for Victims

[WAUKESHA COUNTY, WISC… ] Wisconsin Attorney General Brad Schimel highlights his advocacy on behalf of abused children in his latest campaign ad.

“At the Department of Justice, we partner with local law enforcement to keep communities across the state safe,” said Schimel. “But throughout my nearly 30-years experience as a Wisconsin prosecutor I’ve known that when crimes are committed, it’s imperative we take a compassionate, victim-centered approach in the pursuit of justice.”

The ad tells the story of the The Big Yellow House, which is home to two social service and welfare organizations that assist children in crisis. Brad Schimel helped lead the effort to create the facility in 2006 as a founding member of the Waukesha County Child Advocacy Center Task Force.

“Brad, I think, has always been a very, very strong advocate for the rights and needs of victims of crime,” said Mark Lyday, former Director of Child Advocacy and Protective Services at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin. “These are the most vulnerable victims we have in our society. Brad recognized that early on, and was really a leader locally, and eventually across the state, at developing child advocacy centers.”

Child Advocacy Centers provide a safe, child-focused environment for a trained interviewer to talk to children who have been the victim of a crime. These interviews provide a multidisciplinary team of social workers, medical, and law enforcement personnel valuable information that assists in the prosecution of offenders and begins the process of providing needed trauma-informed care to these young victims. They also provide access to counseling and social welfare services for children. Many, like the Big Yellow House, also have facilities for conducting a compassionate medical examination. The Big Yellow House was the first full-service CAC in Wisconsin.

“Brad really brings the passion and commitment to keep kids safe in a world that can be relatively unsafe,” said Terri Terrill, Executive Director of Family Service of Waukesha. 

Brad Schimel’s experience as a prosecutor and victim advocate is unmatched in this race. He’s spent the largest part of his career as a prosecutor in the sensitive crimes unit, protecting children and vulnerable adults and holding predators accountable. During his time in the Waukesha County District Attorney’s Office, Schimel helped establish Waukesha County’s Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) program, which plays an integral role in making sure that in Waukesha County, crime victims, especially those of sexual violence, receive the best possible care. Schimel also served on Waukesha County’s Sexual Assault Review Team and participated in the development of Waukesha County’s Sexual Assault Investigation Protocol. He has been previously awarded  “Professional of the Year” by the Wisconsin Association of Victim Witness Professionals for his work on behalf of victims of sexual assault and child abuse.

As our Attorney General, Brad Schimel has continued his victim advocacy, prioritizing the testing of previously unsubmitted sexual assault kits that sat on shelves in law enforcement agencies and hospitals across the state for as long as 20 years. Schimel also hired the state’s first statewide child abuse resource prosecutor and statewide SANE coordinator, fulfilling a promise he made when he ran for Attorney General in 2014. Earlier this year, Attorney General Schimel successfully led the effort to enact legislation that provides greater protections for neglected children.

The digital ad, Schimel’s first since May, will run statewide through the end of August. It is part of a series of online and broadcast commercials the Wisconsin prosecutor plans to run before the November 6 election.

Brad Schimel’s determined, yet compassionate, record on criminal justice has earned him the support of 63 of Wisconsin’s 72 sheriffs, including 12 elected Democrat sheriffs who appreciate the breadth, depth, and nonpartisan nature of the Republican Attorney General’s experience.

The spot can be viewed, here.

Sen. Craig: Statement on fallen Milwaukee police officer Michael Michalski

State Senator David Craig
(608) 266-5400

Madison, WI — Today, State Senator David Craig (R-Town of Vernon) released the following statement regarding the murder of Milwaukee Police Officer Michael Michalski:

“My family offers our deepest sympathies to the family, friends, and fellow officers of Michael Michalski. Our prayers for God’s grace and thanks for his service are with his family and all of the City of Milwaukee as we mourn the tragic loss of this hero. May God bless our law enforcement across Wisconsin as they continue to protect and serve our communities.”

Sen. Johnson: Statement on tragic loss of Milwaukee police officer

LaTonya Johnson, 608.266.2500

MADISON – The following is a statement from State Senator LaTonya Johnson on the tragic death of a 17-year veteran of the Milwaukee Police Department:

“My deepest prayers, thoughts, and condolences go out to the friends and family of the Milwaukee Police officer who was tragically killed in the line of duty yesterday. Our police officers put their lives on the line every day to keep our communities safe.

“The loss, grief, and sadness that accompanies fatal and tragic incidents like this leave our entire community in utter shock and mourning. My heart is with the Milwaukee Police Department, our community, and the friends and family of the officer during this difficult time.”

Sen. Larson: Statement on the loss of Milwaukee police officer Michael Michalski

CONTACT: Sen Larson, 608.266.7505

Milwaukee, WI – Today, Senator Chris Larson released the following statement on the tragic death of Officer Michael Michalski in the line of duty.

“My heart goes out to the family and colleagues of Officer Michael Michalski who lost his life in the line of duty serving our community. Officer Michalski was a dedicated public servant, well-liked by fellow officers and the community he served. Every day, our officers put their lives on the line to protect our community and we owe them our devoted gratitude

“The tragedy and grief caused by the loss of officer Michalski ripples throughout Cudahy, where Michael was from, and Milwaukee where he served. I grieve today, along with his family, friends, and fellow officers.”

Sen. Shilling: Weekly Democratic radio address: Just fix it

Contact: Sen. Jennifer Shilling (D – La Crosse) (608)266-5490

MADISON, WI – Senator Jennifer Shilling (D-La Crosse) offered the weekly Democratic radio address today.

The audio file of this week’s address can be found here:

A written transcript of the address is below:

“Hi, I’m State Senator Jennifer Shilling with this week’s Democratic Radio Address.

“As the summer travel season continues, so have the headaches for Wisconsin drivers.

“Crumbling roads, deteriorating highways and structurally unsafe bridges have created a dangerous situation.

“After eight years of Republican budgeting, Wisconsin has over 2,800 bridges that need repairs and our roads are among the worst in the nation.

“Even the Republican chair of the state’s budget committee admitted that “The roads in Illinois are better than in Wisconsin.”

“Rather than delaying projects and laying off workers, Democrats are pushing to prioritize community safety and expand economic opportunities across our state.

“We’re proud to stand with the overwhelming majority of Wisconsin workers, families and businesses who want a responsible, long-term funding solution to repair our crumbling roads and improve transportation safety.

“If you’ve noticed how bad our roads have become, then you know it’s time to #JustFixIt and build toward a brighter future.

“Thank you.”

Sen. Taylor: Statement on death of Milwaukee police officer

For more information, contact:
Aidan McMorrow (608) 266-5810

(MADISON) – Last night a Milwaukee Police Officer was tragically killed in the line of duty after being shot by a wanted man. The Officer, whose name has not been released, was a 17 year veteran of the Milwaukee Police Department, and is the second Officer who was lost to senseless violence in the last two months, the first being Officer Charles Irvine Jr.

Upon learning of this tragedy, Senator Lena Taylor (D-Milwaukee) released the following statement:

“There are certain moments so shocking and so painful that words barely touch the surface of the profound depth of what has occurred. The loss of life is one such moment.  This Officer gave 17 years of service to our city and this is not how that service should have ended.”

“As we keep the family, friends, and fellow colleagues of this officer in mind, we must work to create communities that are safe and in which life is valued. I pray this officer’s family can take solace in the contributions of their family member to achieve that safety.”

Sen. Testin: Weekly Republican radio address: Putting your passion to work

Senator Patrick Testin, (608) 266-3123

More people are working in Wisconsin than ever, and our unemployment rate is below 3%.

Hi. I’m State Senator Patrick Testin from Stevens Point, and I’m here to celebrate Wisconsin’s workforce opportunities.

Even with record workforce participation, Wisconsin businesses are in need of qualified workers. Each month, I work a day “on the job” with a different business in my district to highlight the variety and quality of available jobs.

I’ve worked construction, harvested cranberries, brewed beer, served drinks, packed minnows, chopped hay, swept floors, and much more.

It’s important to recognize that there is dignity in work. No matter what color your collar is, there are family supporting jobs available.

As a Republican, I’m committed to creating ways for the future workforce to harness their passions and put their talents to work. Whether that involves an advanced degree, four years of college, technical education, or an apprenticeship, Wisconsin needs to encourage multiple pathways to success.

Over the course of this session, the Republican legislature has increased funding for worker training, created incentives for student entrepreneurs, and made it easier for young people to complete apprenticeships. We are committed to strengthening Wisconsin’s greatest resource – our people.

Thank you for your time- if you’d like to know what jobs are available in your area, please visit JobCenterofWisconsin.com – and put your passion to work!

Siegrist campaign: Emily Siegrist announces endorsement from AFSCME Council 32

Contact: Emily Siegrist
Phone: 608-381-5221
American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees represent thousands of workers across Wisconsin
River Hills – Emily Siegrist, candidate for the Wisconsin State Assembly District 24, today issued the following statement:
“AFSCME is proud to support candidates who champion the rights of working people in the State of Wisconsin. We are supporting Emily Siegrist because she believes in ensuring safe work environments, creating livable wages for working people that supports a strong middle class and defending the dignity of public service workers from anti-worker attacks. Our members support candidates who will fight for them every day. That is why we have endorsed Emily Siegrist,” noted Annie Wacker, Committee Chairwoman of AFSCME PEOPLE committee.
“Working people across Wisconsin have taken it on the chin by the current administration. From Act 10, to right-to-work, to the ban on project labor agreements, working people in Wisconsin have been left behind. In the assembly, I will always stand with working people and their families. I’m honored to have the support of AFSCME in this election and look forward to working with them after November,” noted Emily following the endorsement.
Emily Siegrist teaches nursing at MSOE. She is also a mother, wife, and homeowner in River Hills. She served in the military and is committed to serving Wisconsin in the assembly. Emily is running against incumbent Dan Knodl to represent communities including Brown Deer, Germantown, Menomonee Falls, Glendale, River Hills and parts of Mequon-Thiensville. The election is on November 6th

Speaker Ryan: A historic defense bill to rebuild our military

AshLee StrongDoug Andres
WASHINGTON—House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) released the following statement on the passage of the conference report for the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act:

This is a major step forward in rebuilding our military. This bill invests in our service members, through both a pay raise for our troops and funding for updated equipment and training. It provides resources to ensure our armed forces are equipped to face the emerging challenges of modern warfare, includes strategic priorities for supporting our allies, and helps defend against hostility from countries like Russia and China. And it provides continued support for our military in the fight against global terrorism.  

“Our men and women in uniform deserve the assurance that Congress is committed to giving them the tools they need. This is the earliest we have finished the national defense bill since 1977, reflecting the urgency of this legislation and underscoring our commitment to our service members. I commend Chairman Mac Thornberry, the members of the Armed Services Committee, and all of the conferees for their tireless work.”

Speaker Ryan: Signs career and technical education bill at weekly press conference

July 26, 2018 | Speaker Ryan Press Office | https://spkrryan.us/2JWqNs9

Summary: At his weekly press conference, Speaker Ryan enrolled a bipartisan bill to overhaul our career and technical education system, helping close the skills gap and match more job seekers with employment opportunities. He also spoke about how the House Republican Better Way agenda has made Americans’ daily lives better.

Overhauling Career and Technical Education

“I am about to sign H.R. 2353, so that we can send it to the president’s desk. I am really excited about this bill. This is a big piece of our Better Way agenda.

“This provides for a complete overhaul of our career and our technical education system.

“I see [Rep.] G.T. Thompson is here, the author of the bill. So I’m very, very, very proud of this effort that he, and all of our colleagues, have put together.

“One obstacle that workers across the country are facing today is that there’s a job that they want, but they don’t have quite the right skills to take that job.

“We call this the skills gap.

“It is a big reason why, right now, we actually have more job openings in America than we have people looking for work.

“That’s a big piece of the skills gap.

“So the demand for skilled workers keeps growing, but Washington has badly been behind the curve on this. We have not properly equipped our education system.

“This changes that. This closes the skills gap.

“Students and workers are now going to have a much clearer path to all of the great career and technical education programs that are out there. We have a bunch of these in Southern Wisconsin.

“I see it all the time where I come from. Great careers, great jobs are being offered, people need work, but they don’t have the skills to get these careers and jobs. This closes that gap.

“There could not be a better time to do this, with the economy back on track, and businesses expanding and hiring again.

“So we’re very excited about this.

“Now, this didn’t get a lot of headlines. This did not get a big, splashy news story. This wasn’t the ticker on the TV. This was not on the front page.

“But this matters.

“It will make people better off. It will make it easier for people to provide for their families.

“This is the kind of thing that I’m in this job for. This is the kind of thing that [Rep.] G.T. Thompson’s in this job for.

“It’s why I’m here. It’s why we come to these jobs: to improve people’s lives. To take good ideas, and turn them into real results that will make a lasting difference for people.”

Delivering Results

“Just look at some of the things that we’ve gotten done in just the last few months alone. We are producing.

“Better care for our veterans. Better access to credit for small businesses. Hope for the terminally ill. More tools to fight transnational gangs like MS-13. More resources to fight opioids, the biggest congressional effort of its kind in history.

“And today—right now, you can see the vote on the floor—the national defense bill to rebuild our military.

“Things like this—things like these—they may not make the cut against the palace intrigue and all the countdown clocks, but we are getting things done to improve people’s lives.

“And, of course, I want to encourage you, I get to do this again, I really enjoy this, I want to encourage you to go to better.gop to see that we’ve been making good on our promises. To see that we’ve been making good on executing our agenda.

“And as a result of our Better Way agenda getting into place, becoming law, people are better off now.

“So go to better.gop to learn more about all of these things.”

THU AM Update: Dem guv candidate Pade calls on Flynn to quit guv’s race

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THU News Summary: Walker, state GOP call on Flynn to quit guv’s race; Dem Party files complaint against Schimel over RAGA donations

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THU PM Update: McCabe says he won’t stage write-in campaign if he loses primary

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U.S. Rep. Kind: Calls on Congress to cancel August district work period and focus on working together to help American farmers, workers and families

Contact: Aaron White
Phone: 202-225-5506
[email protected]

Congress recessing without putting an end to tariffs that are hurting Wisconsin jobs and farms

La Crosse – Today, U.S. Rep. Ron Kind called for Congress to stay in session in August and work together on long-term solutions that help protect the livelihood of Wisconsin’s farmers, workers and families. President Trump’s Trade War is negatively impacting households across Wisconsin and the country, and is hurting the rural economy.

“Wisconsin’s farmers and manufacturers work hard every day to keep the rural economy afloat, and Washington should do the same. Congress needs to take charge and put an end to the trade war, which is why I’m calling on Congressional Leadership to stay in session this August and work to open new markets and keep our farms and businesses open,” saidRep. Ron Kind.

Rep. Ron Kind has recently introduced bipartisan bills that would take back Congress’s power in the application of tariffs, and require the President to seek approval from Congress before imposing tariffs on the basis of national security.

U.S. Rep. Pocan: Slams Trump administration for failing to reunite migrant children with their families

Contact: Ron Boehmer 202-225-2906

WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Representative Mark Pocan (WI-02) today released the following statement regarding the Trump Administration’s failure to reunite all 2,551 immigrant children over the age of five with their parents by today’s court-ordered deadline. The missed deadline comes two weeks after the Trump Administration failed to reunite all the immigrant children under age 5 who had previously been separated from their parents.

“Despite today’s court ordered deadline to reunite families, President Trump’s disastrous family separation policy continues to be a nightmare for hundreds of migrant families. With just hours until the clock runs out on the directive for the Trump Administration to reunite more than 2,500 children over the age of five with their families, it’s clear that the Administration will fail to do so. More than 400 parents may have been deported over the last several months without their children – potentially as a result of misinformation or coercion from the U.S. government – further threatening to keep families apart without any path to reunification.

“Speaker Ryan and Congressional Republicans must join Democrats in speaking out and demanding that the Trump Administration do more to correct the human rights disaster it created. When kids who aren’t even old enough to read or write are still behind bars, separated from their families, we cannot be silent. Clearly the Trump Administration had no plan to reunite these families and Congress must demand answers as to why it has failed to meet the court-ordered deadline.”

U.S. Sen. Baldwin: Bipartisan career and technical education legislation supported by Sen. Baldwin heads to president’s desk

Contact: [email protected]202-224-6225 

Reauthorization of Carl D. Perkins CTE Act will raise the quality of Career and Technical Education programs at schools in Wisconsin and across the country

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin is praising the passage of bipartisan legislation to reauthorize the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act. This measure includes a number of key priorities for Senator Baldwin, a co-chair of the Senate Career and Technical Education (CTE) Caucus, that will raise the quality of CTE programs at schools in Wisconsin and across the country.

The Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act will ensure that students have access to the highest-quality CTE programs and provides critical resources to strengthen career pathways for students, close the skills gap, enhance the recruitment of highly-qualified CTE instructors and meet the workforce readiness needs of tomorrow. The legislation now heads to the President’s desk for his signature.

“I’ve heard firsthand from students, businesses and manufacturers in Wisconsin and it’s clear that we need to do more to support career and technical education so people are better equipped for the high-skilled jobs of today and tomorrow,” said Senator Baldwin. “Career and Technical Education has shown to be one of the most effective ways to respond to our workforce readiness needs so I’m proud to work across party lines on this effort, and am looking forward to the President signing this legislation.”

The Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act includes major provisions from legislation that Senator Baldwin helped spearhead with her fellow bipartisan co-chairs of the Senate CTE Caucus – Senators Tim Kaine (D-VA), Rob Portman (R-OH) and Todd Young (R-IN) – including the Educating Tomorrow’s Workforce Act and the Perkins Equity and Excellence Fund Act. It also includes language from the Middle STEP Act, of which Senator Baldwin is a cosponsor.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Association of Manufacturers and nearly 500 businesses and organizations across the country support the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act. The coalition letter that lists supporting businesses and organizations is available here. The American Federation of Teachers also supports the legislation.

Specifically, the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act:

  • Strengthens the definition of what constitutes rigorous CTE curriculum to align with local, regional and state workforce needs;
  • Supports and expands partnerships with local businesses, regional industries, institutions of higher education and other community stakeholders;
  • Strengthens career pathways by providing students with a continuum of work-based learning opportunities;
  • Improves links between secondary and postsecondary education, including through credit-transfer opportunities to obtain credentials that support jobs in high-demand career fields;
  • Improves the recruitment and retention of highly effective CTE teachers, school leaders and counselors and supports the integration of professional development opportunities between academic teachers and CTE teachers;
  • Creates a fund to support innovative strategies and activities to improve and modernize CTE and align workforce skills with labor market needs;
  • Allows states to use Perkins grant funding to establish CTE-focused academies;
  • Expands Perkins funding to the middle grades and promotes career exploration in middle schools; and
  • Ensures states and school districts provide opportunities for underserved students and special populations to participate in CTE programs.

U.S. Sen. Baldwin: Gets the job done for Wisconsin shipbuilding and manufacturing in National Defense Authorization Act

Contact: [email protected], 202-224-6225

Final NDAA released by House-Senate conference committee includes funding for three Littoral Combat Ships and rejects cuts to the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The final Fiscal Year 2019 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) released this week by the House-Senate conference committee includes funding for three Littoral Combat Ships (LCS) that U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin fought for in the bipartisan legislation. As a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Senator Baldwin has long supported the LCS program and has successfully worked for funding to support Made in Wisconsin shipbuilding.

“I take great pride in representing Wisconsin’s shipbuilding industry because our workers have helped sustain America’s security for generations, boasting a successful history of building ships for our nation’s defense,” said Senator Baldwin. “The LCS program is supported by thousands of skilled workers at the Marinette Marine shipyard and at the 200 suppliers across Wisconsin.”

The Senate version of the NDAA funded only one ship and included harmful restrictions on the LCS program. Senator Baldwin led a bipartisan amendment to increase funding for the program and to remove these restrictions, urging her colleagues to support this critical Made in Wisconsin national security effort. The final NDAA fully funds the program, supporting the construction of three LCS, and rejects the Senate attempt to limit the program. Senator Baldwin’s efforts will help maintain workforce levels at the shipyard in Marinette and throughout the supply chain across Wisconsin.

The Senate version of the NDAA also included a shortsighted $250 million cut to Oshkosh Defense’s Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV) program. Senator Baldwin led a bipartisan amendment to reject that reduction, and the final NDAA fully funds the JLTV. “I have worked hard to support manufacturing jobs at Oshkosh Defense and have long championed the procurement of military vehicles made in Wisconsin,” Senator Baldwin said.

Senator Baldwin also helped secure nearly $30 million in the final NDAA for military construction and family housing projects at Wisconsin’s Fort McCoy, one of the Army’s premier training facilities.

U.S. Sen. Baldwin: Requests federal disaster declaration for Wisconsin communities damaged by flooding

Contact: [email protected]202-224-6225

Senator Baldwin toured flood damage in June and requested federal assistance for impacted Wisconsin counties 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin is requesting a federal disaster declaration for Wisconsin communities damaged by recent storms and severe flooding.

In a letter to President Trump, Senator Baldwin is urging him to support the State of Wisconsin’s request for a major disaster declaration in the Wisconsin counties of Ashland, Bayfield, Burnett, Clark, Douglas and Iron following severe storms and flash flooding. The June storms damaged homes, businesses and public infrastructure, including federal highways and federally-financed water infrastructure projects.

“I travelled to Wisconsin shortly after the storms to meet with local officials and to tour the affected areas. There, I saw some of the flood damage, including a washed out section of U.S. Highway 2, a major artery across northern Wisconsin,” Senator Baldwin wrote. “In a June 28, 2018 letter, I wrote to you calling on the federal government to provide assistance should Governor Walker make a request seeking a federal disaster declaration. The Governor has determined that this incident requires immediate federal assistance after Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) damage assessments revealed that the total cost of debris clearance, emergency protective measures, and damage to public infrastructure was in excess of $13.1 million.”

Senator Baldwin continued, “Federal resources are critical to ensure rapid and effective response and recovery. A major disaster declaration will also help ensure that Wisconsinites impacted by these storms can rebuild their communities with robust funding and support from the federal government.”

In June, Senator Baldwin met with local officials in Ashland and visited an area affected by the flooding. She also called on theFederal Highway Administration to make federal emergency relief funding available to help repair roads and bridges damaged by the severe flooding in northern Wisconsin. To date, the Federal Highway Administration has released $1 million for emergency road repairs.

The full letter is available here.

Vukmir campaign: Proven conservative Leah Vukmir wins Wisconsin GOP Senate debate

Contact: Jessica Ward, (608) 213-5939

Trump is ‘making America great again and I’m going to stand with him’

Milwaukee — Proven conservative and U.S. Senate candidate Leah Vukmir was the clear winner in the U.S. Senate debate on Thursday, demonstrating to Republican primary voters why her consistent record is why they can count on her to represent Wisconsin.

One of the key moments of the debate was when Leah called out the fake news for trying to undermine President Trump in his agenda to make America great again, despite his many clear victories for working-class Wisconsinites.

“The liberal elite and the media want nothing more than to bring this president down,” Leah said. “I want to see this president succeed. When he succeeds, America succeeds. He’s doing exactly what he promised: making America great again.”

“President Donald Trump is making America great again and I’m going to stand with him.”

Her Conservative Track Record:

“I stood shoulder to shoulder with Gov. Scott Walker as we broke the stranglehold of public sector unions. I stand for these conservative ideas: I stand for life. I stand for Second Amendment. And most of all I stand for our Constitution. Not only can I talk about these values, I can stand by my record of fighting for them.”

On Immigration:

“We are a nation of laws. We cannot have any other conversation about DACA … until we build the wall. Then we can talk about a process for those DACA residents. But it can’t be a wave of the wand. They must go through a process to become a citizen of this country.”

On Healthcare:

“Under Obamacare, we have not created an affordable health care system. We have a broken health care system. We need to bring healthcare back to the states. We know how to take care of our neediest of needy, preexisting conditions. 

“We need an army of consumers with info and tools to make decisions about their health care. We need to unleash consumerism, bring it back to states, and solve our health care problems.”

On Trade:

“President Donald Trump is making a difference. Just this week we are seeing things change with the EU.  

“Nurses listen. We listen to our patients. I listen to my constituents and I will make sure we listen to everyone before making decisions.”

On Being Pro-Life:

“I have been 100% pro-life. It’s hard to be a nurse and not be pro-life when you spend your whole career saving lives.

“We are a country that cannot stand for death and murder. What about the unborn? What about that tiny innocent life? I will always stand for life.”

On Education:

Education was the issue that got me started in the first place. I’m passionate making sure decisions about education are made as close to home as possible. I trust parents.”

Vukmir, Nicholson back Trump, tout conservative credentials in U.S. Senate GOP primary debate

Republican U.S. Senate candidate frontrunners Leah Vukmir and Kevin Nicholson backed President Trump and touted their conservative credentials in a televised debate tonight ahead of next month’s primary.

But Vukmir lamented the controversial border policy. “We shouldn’t be separating children from their parents,’’ she said.

The debate came just a couple hours after a new NBC News/Marist College Poll showed Nicholson led Vukmir along likely voters 38 to 35 percent, within the margin of error of plus or minus 3.6 percentage points. The primary is Aug. 14.

During the debate, the pair were prompted by moderators multiple times over whether they disagree with any policies or statements from Trump. But Vukmir, a state senator from Brookfield, and Nicholson, a former Marine and business consultant, chose to tout what they saw as the president’s accomplishments.

Vukmir applauded Trump over his deregulation efforts and conservative nominations to the U.S. Supreme Court, while Nicholson highlighted the president’s signing of the GOP tax overhaul plan, his talks with North Korea and more.

While both avoided negative comments on the president’s policies, Vukmir said if there came a point where she sees a “discrepancy between what is happening in the state of Wisconsin and what the president is doing, I will speak out.”

Nicholson, meanwhile, brought up Trump’s news conference in Helsinki with Russia President Putin, but noted while others had pushed back on Trump’s comments, “what I saw is the president open a line of communication with a foreign leader.”  

Asked whether the Trump administration’s trade policies would cause permanent damage to Wisconsin business owners and families, both Nicholson and Vukmir said no.

The two also touted yesterday’s announcement of an apparent easing in tensions between the U.S. and European Union.

“I do believe President Trump is known for being a negotiator, and what we have seen so far, and what he is doing, it’s making a difference,” Vukmir said.

And Nicholson said of Trump’s strategy: “What the president is doing, saying to our trade partners, ‘Come back to the negotiating table and let’s actually get to a world without tariffs,’ (it’s) clear as day that is what’s happening here.”

The two candidates stood behind podiums on a stage at UW-Milwaukee in the debate hosted by a media coalition that included WTMJ-TV, WUWM-FM, WGBA-TV, WisPolitics.com, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and the USA Today Network. WTMJ news anchors Charles Benson and Shannon Sims, along with WUWM’s Mitch Teich, all posed questions to the candidates. The three minor candidates joined the 90-minute debate in the last half hour.

Nicholson and Vukmir also played up their conservative backgrounds, with Vukmir pointing to her “proven” record and harkening back to her support of Gov. Scott Walker’s policies during the protests surrounding Act 10.

Nicholson, former president of the College Democrats of America in 2000, stressed conservativism to him is a way of life and he’ll “continue to live it in the U.S. Senate as we drive solutions our country needs.” And he later noted members of his family have “turned on him” over his political beliefs.

Nicholson’s parents and brother have all donated the maximum amount to U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin, D-Madison.

Asked about Baldwin’s “Buy America” legislation, which Trump supports, Nicholson said while Baldwin put her name on the bill, she stood against Trump on the tax overhaul and regulatory reform, which are things he said will let the economy grow.

“What we need are senators that further understand you can’t be doing this for show, you’ve got to do it for real,” Nicholson said.

Vukmir said she needs to see specifics, but would have to evaluate the impact on American businesses, as some may not have the ability to meet requirements of such legislation.

Nicholson and Vukmir were given the opportunity to ask a question of each other.

Vukmir noted Nicholson’s criticism of political insiders and asked if he felt Walker was an insider or part of the political class and whether he should be running for governor.

Nicholson praised Walker, but said he is not running for Senate.

“We need people running for United States Senate who have lived a life outside the lines and who understand the problems in Washington are outside the lines,” he said.  

Nicholson asked Vukmir what steps she’d like to see the U.S. take in Syria.

Vukmir, whose son is a 1st lieutenant in the Army, says she is concerned about the issue as her son could be deployed there.

Vukmir said any safe havens for terrorists that threaten the nation’s national security need to be rooted out, and once they are, U.S. troops should be withdrawn and regional powers should stabilize the situation.

“We cannot be involved in infinite wars,” she said.

The two were also given the opportunity to comment on the opponent’s campaign.

Nicholson quipped that he was impressed by Vukmir’s determination in reminding voters about his past as a Democrat. But he went on to praise her for her love of her family.

“When I hear her speak about her son, I can tell it comes from the heart,” he said. “And I understand that her love of him and his service is real, and I completely respect that.”

Vukmir said she was impressed by Nicholson’s ability to reach people and his service to the country.

“It’s really important that we have strong leaders, people who put their lives on the line for us,” she said. “You’ve done that, and you’re carrying that through in your campaign.”

George Lucia, of De Pere, said as a 75-year-old retiree who spent 56 years in the private sector, upon ending his career he “decided that maybe I should find something to do and decided to become a United States senator.”

Lucia — a veteran who has a background in manufacturing, sales and other areas — also noted he’s been married “more than once, like our president,” is currently single and has been a backer of Trump since his candidacy was announced.  

Charles Barman, who worked in construction and owns a farm, stressed his work collecting signatures to stop a $1 billion train project from Illinois to Indiana. He also talked about his efforts as an Indiana congressional candidate to fight Chicago’s dumping of water into the Illinois river that he blamed for flooding in northern Indiana and Wisconsin.

Griffin Jones, a corporate treasury analyst at CUNA Mutual Group, said the totality of his experience makes him qualified to serve.

He highlighted his work in the insurance industry and noted his connections with people in both urban and rural Wisconsin.

“And that’s a really important thing in a race here where you’re trying to represent a state that’s as large and diverse as Wisconsin, and obviously, we know the rural and city divides,” he said.

Asked if they would agree to back whichever Republican wins the Aug. 14 U.S. Senate primary, Jones and Lucia both said yes while Benson said no.  

Meanwhile, state Dem Party spokesman Brad Bainum knocked the GOP candidates, saying the contrast between them and Baldwin “couldn’t be any more clear after tonight.”

“While Tammy Baldwin does right by Wisconsin—whether it’s standing up to the president of her own party or working with the president of the opposing party—Leah Vukmir and Kevin Nicholson would be rubber stamps for Donald Trump’s agenda and work for the corporate special interests and billionaires bankrolling their campaigns,” he said in a statement.

Watch today’s GOP U.S. Senate primary debate live here at 6 p.m.

The U.S. Senate debate featuring all five Republican primary contenders is airing this evening, hosted by a media partnership that includes WisPolitics.com.

Those participating are: Charles Barman, George Lucia, Griffin Jones, Kevin Nicholson and state Sen. Leah Vukmir, with Vukmir and Nicholson featured in the first hour and the others joining in for last half hour.

You can watch the full 90 minutes here at 6 p.m.

If you are in the Milwaukee area, you can watch the first hour of the debate at UW-Milwaukee live on WTMJ-TV or listen to WUWM-FM. An additional 30 minutes will be air live on WUWM and stream on wuwm.com, tmj4.com, nbc26.com, and jsonline.com.

See the Election Blog tonight for coverage:

If the above player is not working, please visit: https://www.tmj4.com/breakingnews

An audio stream is available at WUWM: http://www.wuwm.com/#stream/0

Wisconsin Historical Society: History is in bloom at Old World Wisconsin

Contact: Kara O’Keeffe
[email protected]org

Eagle, Wis. – During the month of August, Old World Wisconsin will bloom with garden activities as guests experience Heirloom Gardens!

“As we soak in the summer sun, our gardens will be blooming with lively, beautiful heirloom flowers, fruits and vegetables,” said Dan Freas, site director of Old World Wisconsin. “The diversity of plants is matched only by the stories of our immigrant families who cultures, foods and styles can be seen in the activities throughout the month.”

Heirloom Garden month will be full of immersive experiences for guests of all ages to participate in. These hands-on activities range from creating natural plant dyes, to discovering the sweet magic of honeymaking and botany demonstrations.  The celebration will include tours with heirloom garden experts who will talk about and showcase hundreds of different vegetables, flowers and herbs, some of which guests will get to taste-test!  In addition to the organic food tastings, guests are also invited to get their hands dirty and try out old-fashioned gardening tools and visit the root cellar, rockery, and rootery.  Guests will receive also receive gardening tips!

During their visit, guests can stop at the new Old World Wisconsin Garden Shop to pick up heirloom seeds, tools, and other garden inspiration to make their home bloom with history.  Old World Wisconsin’s plants, staff, and volunteers look forward to welcoming you to celebrate heirloom gardens.

This special experience will take place from July 30 to August 31.  Wisconsin Historical Society members receive free admission.  Admission rates: Adults (18-64) $19; Children (5-17) $10; (children 4 and under are free of admission); Senior citizens (65 and over) $16. Fees include an all-day tram transportation pass, and parking is free. For more information, please call 262-594-6301 or visit http://oldworldwisconsin.wisconsinhistory.org/.

Old World Wisconsin is one of the Wisconsin Historical Society’s twelve historic sites and museums.

Wisconsin Historical Society: Mike Lilek presents ‘An American Home by Frank Lloyd Wright’

Contact: Kara O’Keeffe
[email protected]org 

Greenbush, Wis. – On August 9 at 7:00 pm, the Wade House feature a presentation of Mike Lilek’s “An American Home by Frank Lloyd Wright.”  Lilek’s lecture will explore Wright’s broad vision to shelter all Americans in a beautiful home of his design with emphasis on the American System-Built Homes in Milwaukee.  Wright would say, “I believe this effort is the logical conclusion of my studies and my architectural practice…”

Mike Lilek is a leading scholar on Frank Lloyd Wright’s American System-Built Homes.  Lilek is currently the Curator of “Burnham Block”, six Wright-designed American System-Built Homes on Burnham Street in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  Mike supervised the restoration of two of the homes and is currently working on the first monograph about the project.  Lilek is also President of Shining Brow, LLC., a software developer creating solutions for field-service organizations based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

The Wade House lecture series will take place at the Wade House Visitor Center located at W7965 Hwy. 23 in Greenbush, WI, halfway between Sheboygan and Fond du Lac.  Admission to the “An American Home by Frank Lloyd Wright” lecture on August 9 is $5.00 per person. Wisconsin Historical Society members receive free admission.

The Wade House is celebrating the 150th birthday of world-renowned architect Frank Lloyd Wright with a series of lectures and an exhibit focusing on Wright’s work in Wisconsin and his relationship with Sheboygan carriage collector and restoration expert Wesley W. Jung.

WisDems: At tonight’s debate, Vukmir and Nicholson should answer for their megadonors, corporate special interest giveaway agenda

Contact: Brad Bainum, [email protected]

MADISON — Tonight’s Republican Senate primary broadcast debate will feature all five Republicans running for the GOP U.S. Senate nomination: Griffin Jones, Charles Barman, George Lucia, Kevin Nicholson, and Leah Vukmir.

That gives Jones, Barman, and Lucia an opportunity to tonight highlight that Vukmir and Nicholson are beholden to the corporate special interests and megadonors that are spending millions to elect Vukmir and Nicholson and buy a U.S. Senator who works for them.

Here are some questions that Leah Vukmir and Kevin Nicholson should have to answer at tonight’s debate:

Questions for Leah Vukmir

  • Why has Leah Vukmir repeatedly sided with insurance and drug companies over our state’s working families, and worked to let them charge patients, including seniors, more for coverage?
  • How can we trust Leah Vukmir to take on Washington’s corporate special interest corruption when she’s on the board of a Koch brothers-funded “stealth business lobbyist” special interest group?
  • Why is Vukmir campaigning on the GOP tax law that sends more than 80 percent of benefits to Vukmir’s biggest donors, the richest Americans, and big corporations like Pfizer — a law that Washington Republicans are now using to argue for deep cuts to Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid?

Questions for Kevin Nicholson

  • What — beyond pledging his support for privatizing Social Security and eliminating health care programs that hardworking Wisconsinites rely on — did Kevin Nicholson promise Illinois billionaire Dick Uihlein in exchange for Uihlein bankrolling his campaign… to the tune of $8 million? Nicholson hasn’t addressed his relationship with Uihlein except to praise him for his support.
  • Why did Kevin Nicholson for months hide the names of the private equity firms and hedge funds that have paid him nearly $1 million in consulting commissions while they laid off nearly 1,900 workers?
  •  Who did Kevin Nicholson vote for in North Carolina’s Democratic presidential primary? Nicholson claims he voted “No Preference,” but PolitiFact WisconsinWITI-TV, and the Wisconsin State Journal, have each debunked Nicholson’s claims, and determined that he voted for either Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama. Did Nicholson vote for Clinton, or was it Obama? He’s been evasive and voters deserve to know his record.

WisDems: On SCOTUS, Vukmir and Nicholson want to end pre-existing condition coverage

Contact: Brad Bainum, [email protected]

Vukmir and Nicholson also want to overturn Roe v. Wade, enact a zero-exception abortion ban, and potentially even ban some common forms of birth control

MADISON — As Leah Vukmir and Kevin Nicholson debate the kind of Supreme Court Justices that they would approve of, it’s important to remember that Vukmir and Nicholson are pushing for the Supreme Court to strike down the Affordable Care Act’s protections for people with pre-existing conditions — which could threaten 133 million Americans’ health care access.

And on another key Supreme Court litmus test — the question of whether the constitutional right to privacy protects a woman’s right to choose — Vukmir and Nicholson similarly take a position that would threaten millions of Americans access to a full range of health care options. Vukmir and Nicholson not only support overturning Roe v. Wade, but also back a zero-exception abortion ban and support so-called “personhood” measures that could even ban some common forms of birth control.

WisDems: On tonight’s Wisconsin GOP Senate primary debate

Contact: Brad Bainum, [email protected]

MADISON — Following tonight’s Wisconsin GOP Senate primary debate, Democratic Party of Wisconsin spokesperson for the 2018 Senate race Brad Bainum issued the following statement:

“The contrast in Wisconsin’s Senate race couldn’t be any more clear after tonight. While Tammy Baldwin does right by Wisconsin—whether it’s standing up to the president of her own party or working with the president of the opposing party—Leah Vukmir and Kevin Nicholson would be rubber stamps for Donald Trump’s agenda and work for the corporate special interests and billionaires bankrolling their campaigns.”

WisDems: Vukmir and Nicholson are beholden to billionaire donors’ agenda

Contact: Brad Bainum, [email protected]

Illinois billionaire Dick Uihlein has spent more than $8 million for Kevin Nicholson; and Wisconsin’s Diane Hendricks is spending big for Leah Vukmir

MADISON — Despite Leah Vukmir’s claim that she isn’t beholden to her campaign’s big donors, the truth is that both Vukmir and Kevin Nicholson are bought-and-paid-for by billionaires and powerful, corporate special interests that are spending millions to buy a U.S. Senator who will work for them.

  • Illinois billionaire Dick Uihlein and Kevin Nicholson — Uihlein has so far spent more than $8 million in support of Nicholson, as he seeks to “spawn” and “nurture” a U.S. Senator of his own. It’s no coincidence that Nicholson believes  Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid cuts are a priority, while Uihlein’s agenda includes privatizing Social Security entirely and dismantling health care programs that Wisconsin families rely on.

  • Wisconsin billionaire Diane Hendricks and Leah Vukmir — On the other side of Wisconsin Republicans’ billionaire-bankrolled “GOP Civil War” is Vukmir and her billionaire megadonor Hendricks, who’s funding anti-Nicholson attack ads spotlighting Nicholson’s previous support for a woman’s right to choose.

No matter who wins out in Wisconsin’s “GOP Civil War,” Wisconsin families lose: both Vukmir and Nicholson are bought-and-paid-for by billionaire megadonors and they’d put their powerful corporate special interest backers first in Washington, not Wisconsin families.

WisDems: Vukmir and Nicholson back deep Social Security and Medicare cuts

Contact: Brad Bainum, [email protected]

MADISON — Make no mistake: underneath all of the coded language, Leah Vukmir and Kevin Nicholson support Paul Ryan and Washington Republicans’ plans for cuts to Medicare, Social Security and Medicaid, which provide essential benefits and health care coverage to Wisconsin kids, retirees, and nursing home residents.

Kevin Nicholson has received more than $8 million in support from Illinois billionaire Dick Uihlein, whose agenda includes privatizing Social Security and eliminating health care programs that Wisconsin families rely on. And the reason that Vukmir received Speaker Paul Ryan’s endorsement last month is because she agrees with Nicholson, Ryan, and Uihlein when it comes to gutting the social safety net.

Here’s how Vukmir and Nicholson’s plans for deep cuts to Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid would impact Wisconsin families:

WisDems: Vukmir and Nicholson support increasing health care costs, cutting coverage

Contact: Brad Bainum, [email protected]

MADISON — Leah Vukmir and Kevin Nicholson just recommitted to Washington Republicans’ health care market sabotage that’s spiking premiums across the country — because they’re both running to work for powerful special interests in Washington, not Wisconsin families.

Vukmir and Nicholson are bought-and-paid-for by the corporate special interests and big donors bankrolling their campaigns — and their health care record proves it:

WisPolitics Midday – July 26, 2018


In today’s WisPolitics Midday update: Speaker Paul Ryan doesn’t support impeachment efforts against DOJ official; AG Brad Schimel launches new digital ad focusing on his work aiding victims of child abuse; Dem gubernatorial candidate calls on fellow candidate Matt Flynn to leave the race.

Women’s March WI: Endorses Robyn Vining for state Assembly District 14


Sarah Pearson, Co-Chair
Women’s March WI
[email protected]

Violet Kilmurray, Co-Chair
Women’s March WI
[email protected]

Women’s March Wisconsin is proud to endorse Robyn Vining for State Assembly in District 14. Robyn is a highly successful entrepreneur and small business owner who is living out her commitment to public service by running for office.

Robyn is a founding board member of Exploit No More, a group that works to end child sex trafficking, Help Portrait Milwaukee, and The Milwaukee Portrait Project, initiatives that serve some of Milwaukee’s most vulnerable communities. She was awarded the United Way’s Philanthropic 5 award in 2013 and was named American Mothers’ Wisconsin Mother of the Year in 2017 in recognition of her commitment to our community.

We know Robyn Vining is committed to represent all people of Wisconsin – including women, people of color, people with disabilities, Native, immigrant, Muslim, lesbian, queer, trans, nonbinary, formerly incarcerated and poor people. That is why Women’s March Wisconsin is proud to endorse Robyn Vining as she works to represent Wisconsin State Assembly District 14.

July 27, 2018 | July 25, 2018
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