Of Elections And Manure

Conservationists discouraged about farmland preservation program defeats in Mukwonago, and Washington County, can take solace in a Manitowoc County referendum victory:

Grassroots objections to daily manure runoff from large dairy operations sparked the creation and adoption of a tough that should keep much of that waste out of an important Lake Michigan shoreline area.

Local organizing and indefensible big corporate farming practices made the difference.

As to the other election news: Annette Ziegler's win was no surprise. She was far better funded and organized that her opponent, Linda Clifford.

Outside and third-party donors poured millions into Ziegler's campaign, and skillfully used saturation television ads and statewide mailings - - even to Democrats - - to define the Supreme Court as just another crime-fighting, prosecutorial tool.

Supporters of incumbent Justice Louis Butler, sure to run for re-election in 2008 against Milwaukee County Circuit Judge Michael will have to do at least things a lot better to help Butler retain his seat:

1. Raise more funds to level the financial playing field.

2. Educate the voters about what the Court really is, and what the justices do in the state's legal system.

There's a year to go; corporate and GOP strategists laid the groundwork April 3rd for a rightwing capture next year of the Supreme Court with Ziegler's win, so there's no time to waste.

One more observation: Mike McGee, Jr.'s landslide win in an anti-climactic recall election showed that rightist yammering on talk radio and political organizing from outside an aldermanic district is unwelcome and wasteful.

Maybe McGee uses his win and elevated stature for greater leadership. Msybe it only inflates his ego: who knows?

But one thing is clear: the voters in his central city Milwaukee aldermanic district spoke loudly and clearly, so everyone trying to run McGee out of office, and stage-manage the district from afar, should find something else to do.

Published

April 5, 2007 - 2:52pm

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