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Quotes of the week
Some of his tweets are hurting him.
– U.S. Rep. Glenn Grothman about President Trump in an interview with “Upfront” host Mike Gousha. The Glenbeulah Republican told Gousha he told Trump the same thing, adding he believes Trump has “done a good job” but offends some people with his style and tweets.
Her idea of a border would be drawing a line in the dirt with a wink and a nod.
– Republican Leah Vukmir, of Brookfield, about U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin in a debate between the two over the weekend. Vukmir said she stands with President Trump in his calls for a wall along the nation’s southern border.
Unfortunately my opponent won’t even look at this until they build a wall.
– Baldwin knocking Vukmir. The Madison Dem was referencing a bill aiming to overhaul the immigration system that she supported that would have added 20,000 new border agents, created a pathway to citizenship for “dreamers” and addressed agricultural visa issues.
This week’s news
— Wisconsin House incumbents outraised their challengers nearly 2-to-1 over the latest fundraising period, according to a WisPolitics.com check of the FEC site.
The $1.89 million the seven brought in was almost double that of the $1.07 million their five major-party contenders pulled in over the period, though one — Timothy Rogers in the 4th CD — didn’t file a report. The period ran from July 26 to Sept. 30.
The WisPolitics.com check compared House incumbents to their challengers who made it through the Aug. 14 primary. It also didn’t include look at the 1st CD, which is open following Republican Speaker Paul Ryan’s announcement he won’t seek re-election.
In that district, Dem Randy Bryce outpaced Republican Bryan Steil, raising $1.2 million to Steil’s $919,250. The Caledonia ironworker also spent $2.2 million to close the period with $656,239 in the bank.
Steil, meanwhile, spent $918,417 to end September with $631,961 cash on hand.
Dem Cathy Myers, who lost to Bryce in the primary, raised $228,752 and spent $384,473, ending the period with $4,533 in the bank. And Kevin “Adam” Steen, the only other Republican contender to file a report over the period so far, listed $30,828 in receipts and $29,238 in expenditures. He also had $4,905 cash on end.
U.S. Rep. Mark Pocan, who doesn’t face a challenger in the election next month, brought in $176,866, ending September with $568,016 in the bank.
That’s after the Town of Vermont Dem spent $106,099 over the period.
U.S. Rep. Ron Kind has the biggest warchest among House incumbents, logging $2.9 million in the bank to end the quarter.
The La Crosse Dem, who’s facing GOP opponent Steve Toft, also raised $302,193 and spent $478,143.
He outraised Toft, who pulled in $63,072 and spent $92,488, ending the month with $64,243 cash on hand.
U.S. Rep. Gwen Moore, a Milwaukee Dem, raised $124,658, spent $153,707 and finished the period with $53,668 in the bank.
Moore’s former Dem opponent, ex-state Sen. Gary George, had not yet filed a report with the FEC.
Republican challengers Timothy Rogers, who won the August primary, and Cindy Werner also had not yet filed their reports.
U.S. Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner edged out challenger Tom Palzewicz in fundraising over the period, raising $73,213.
Palzewicz, a U.S. Navy veteran and the co-owner of an ActionCOACH business consulting franchise, bought in $64,177.
Sensenbrenner, R-Menomonee Falls, also spent $68,956 over the period, while Palzewicz logged $61,397 in expenditures.
Sensenbrenner finished up the period with $478,457 in the bank, while Palzewicz trailed with $45,982 cash on hand.
Meanwhile, Sensenbrenner’s Republican primary opponent, Waukesha pediatrician Jennifer Hoppe Vipond, raised $200, spent $6,144 and had a negative balance of $7,617.
Dem Dan Kohl raised about double that of Republican U.S. Rep. Glenn Grothman over the last reporting period.
Kohl brought in $759,789 compared to Grothman’s $359,531. The Democrat also far outspent his the Glenbeulah Republican, logging $1.5 million in expenditures compared to Grothman’s $284,427.
Still, Grothman recorded $929,454 in cash on hand, far more than Kohl’s $392,752.
U.S. Rep. Sean Duffy continued to lead Dem Margaret Engebretson in fundraising this quarter, pulling in $407,931 over the period.
Duffy spent $928,438, leaving him with almost $2 million in the bank — the most cash on hand among incumbent Republicans.
Engebretson, D-Superior, raised $51,831 and spent $24,985, leaving her with $32,685 heading into the last leg of the election following her primary win.
Engebretson’s Democratic primary opponent, Brian Ewert, raised $11,346 over the period. The Marshfield doctor also spent $94,249, leaving him with $13,749 in the bank.
U.S. Rep. Mike Gallagher raised $445,809 over the most recent fundraising period, the most of all House incumbents
The Green Bay Republican spent $266,907, leaving him with $1.5 million in the bank.
Democrat challenger Beau Liegeois pulled in $128,955 over the period.
The Brown County assistant DA also spent $59,482, ending September with $109,201 cash on hand.
— U.S. Rep. Mark Pocan has submitted a records request to the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement asking for more information on the recent raids in Wisconsin.
Pocan’s request comes after he met with ICE officials concerning the arrests of 83 Wisconsinites, including 44 who had previous criminal convictions and 16 who did not.
Pocan met with agency officials shortly after the late September raids to gain a better understanding of what led to these events and if protocol had been followed. But the Town of Vermont Dem said ICE officials didn’t provide many answers in their meeting.
That prompted his submission of his first Freedom of Information Act request to the agency Friday.
Among the information he requested was: the contact between ICE officials and local law enforcement, the list of the criminal offenses committed by the 83 detainees, and documentation that protocol was followed when making the arrests.
— U.S. Rep. Ron Kind is calling on federal health officials to provide funding to help Wisconsin residents enroll in health insurance coverage for 2019.
Kind in a letter this week urged Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Administrator Seema Verma to allocate additional funding to organizations that provide in-person enrollment assistance for Wisconsinites.
The La Crosse Dem said in the letter that just one Wisconsin organization was awarded federal funding for enrollment services this year, noting that the grant was cut by more than 80 percent from the previous years. He added in a statement that the Trump administration is “harming the health and wellbeing of Wisconsinites” by making it “nearly impossible” for people to access in-person assistance.
“Choosing a health care plan can be complicated, and I want to ensure we have sufficient resources available to find coverage that works for every Wisconsinite and their family,” Kind said in the release.
— U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin is urging the Federal Trade Commission to fully enforce its “Made in the USA” labeling standards.
Baldwin and U.S. Sens. Sherrod Brown, D-OH, and Chris Murphy, D-Conn., in a recent letter asked the FTC to consider monetary penalties and admission of guilt settlements for companies that fraudulently put “Made in America” labels on foreign-made products.
In the letter sent to FTC Chairman Joseph Simons, the senators cited instances in which companies had violated this labeling standard and claimed a failure to enforce the code misleads consumers and disadvantages domestic producers. They said a monetary violation penalty is necessary to deter companies from continuing to use this “deceptive” tactic to sell their products.
“The value of the ‘Made in the USA’ label is dependent on its integrity,” the letter says. “Failure to take decisive action risks weakening the significance of the ‘Made in the USA’ label and undermining American manufacturers.”
Baldwin, D-Madison, has previously introduced “Buy American” legislation. Her “Made in America Act of 2018,” for example, would ensure certain materials used in federal infrastructure aid programs are made in the U.S.
— Baldwin is also calling on the Securities and Exchange Commission to consider changes to give workers a greater voice at public companies.
The Madison Dem and 12 other senators in a letter urged SEC Chair Jay Clayton to use an upcoming meeting to consider implementing new practices that would benefit workers. The changes would promote worker engagement, drive long-term growth and investment and give workers a greater voice in public companies by allowing workers to be elected as company board members.
The letter cites research that shows positive long-term resource allocation among company boards with worker representation.
“We strongly believe meaningful ownership can and should be determined by the value of contributions made to the company by its various stakeholders,” the letter says. “Because your agenda seeks a forum for engagement, we believe the SEC’s agenda should include a discussion of the merits of directly electing of workers to company boards.”