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Dane Co. judge rules Walker must hold special elections

Scott Walker

Dane County Court judge Josann Reynolds today ruled that the state must hold a special election for the two seats recently vacated in the State Legislature. Judge Reynolds was appointed by Scott Walker in 2014. The lawsuit was brought by the National Redistricting Foundation, and affiliate of Eric Holder's National Democratic Redistricting Committee. 

This is largely seen as a blow to Republicans in Wisconsin....

Evers Demands Action on Wisconsin’s Drinking Water Crisis

Drinking Water Quality in Some Areas of Wisconsin Worse than Flint Michigan;
Evers’ plan targets water clean-up and keeping Wisconsin kids safe

MADISON – Democratic candidate for Governor Tony Evers today announced a new digital video highlighting Wisconsin’s growing drinking water crisis in addition to releasing a series of policies to keep Wisconsin’s kids safe.  Over the last eight years, Governor Scott...

Bi-Partisan Legislation to Update County Population Threshold Passes the State Senate


MADISON – Yesterday, the State Senate passed Assembly Bill 836, authored by Representative Lisa Subeck (D-Madison), Representative Todd Novak (R- Dodgeville), Senator Luther Olsen (R- Ripon) and Senator Mark Miller (D-Monona). AB 836 will update references in state statutes to reflect current population numbers and prevent numerous laws...

What's At Issue in Wisconsin's Special Elections Lawsuit

In Newton v. Walker, filed in Dane County Circuit Court on Feb. 26, 2018, voters in the state Legislature's vacant 1st Senate District and 42nd Assembly District are trying to convince a judge that state law requires Gov. Scott Walker...

Giving a Voice to People Who Live with Disabilities

Kathleen Vinehout

“Many people with disabilities depend on public programs so they can stay healthy and live, work and participate in the community,” Jason Endres wrote to me in favor of a bill I recently introduced.

My bill, Senate Bill 870, would create a Public Assistance Advisory Committee. I drafted this legislation in response to Special Session bills recently passed by the Legislature that modified public assistance...

State Senate interest as Moulton retires, Bernier announces

Rep. Kathy Bernier

This morning there was a considerable amount of interest generated in the 23rd State Senate District, as two-term State Senator Terry Moulton announced that he will not run for another term. This apparently did not come as a surprise to Representative Kathy Bernier, who very quickly followed up by announcing that she will be running for Moulton's...

Bernier announces senate run

Lake Hallie, WI – State Representative Kathy Bernier (R-Lake Hallie), announced today that she is a candidate for the 23rd State Senate district, currently represented by Terry Moulton (R-Chippewa Falls).

“Wisconsin is moving forward and it is time to build on that success on behalf of the residents of west-central Wisconsin. I am proud of my record in the State Assembly, and am excited to announce my candidacy for State...

Moulton announces he will not run for another term

Lake Hallie – State Senator Terry Moulton (R-Chippewa Falls) issued the following statement:

“Today I am officially announcing that I will not seek a third term in the senate and will be retiring from the legislature when my current term ends in December. When I began my campaign for the senate, eight years ago this month, my goals were to work for smaller government, reduced tax burden, and a better climate for jobs in Wisconsin. We have...

Listening to Those Who Cannot Hear

"The quality of interpreters is so important. I need someone who has the fluent skills to work with me,” Leah Simmons explained. “Their lack of knowledge reflects negatively on me.”

Professor Simmons uses specific jargon and language. Her colleagues and students judge her by the language she uses. She cannot communicate directly to hearing students.

Professor Simmons is Deaf. She is part of a community of Deaf and Hard of Hearing people working to upgrade skill levels...

Evers Campaign Statement on Walker’s School Safety Package

MADISON – Maggie Gau, Campaign Manager for Tony for Wisconsin, released the following statement on Scott Walker’s response to Tony Evers call for a special session on school safety following the shooting in Parkland, Florida, that took the lives of 17 students and staff:


“Today’s announcement is simply another tone-deaf, desperate election-year stunt by Governor Walker.  Our kids, our...

Representative Lisa Subeck’s Statement on Special Session

MADISON – State Representative Lisa Subeck (D – Madison) issued the following statement today in response to Governor Walker’s call for a special session on school safety:
“Only now, feeling the pressure of a tough re-election bid, does Governor Walker show an...

One Step Moves Us Forward

“Lord willing, and the creek don’t rise, I’ll see you Tuesday.” I said as I left the office in Madison.

By the next day, the creek at the base of my farm’s steep driveway had risen over the road. The rushing water cut a channel through the gravel town road, making the road impassable.

My forward-thinking husband kept an eye on the water’s progress and moved vehicles over to the other side before...

A Wheelchair is Not a Trampoline: Questioning Assumptions about Support

Kathleen Vinehout

“Public assistance should be a trampoline not a hammock,” read the title of Governor Walker’s press release touting work on a package of bills introduced in a Legislative Special Session. The bills made changes to certain programs targeted at helping those living in poverty.

During the recent Senate debate, proponents of the bills declared the best road out of poverty was a job. No one in the Senate disagreed....

Election Day Tuesday - vote like your life depends on it


Tomorrow is election day in Wisconsin. Important elections are up throughout the state. Everyone in the state has an opportunity to vote in the primary election for State Supreme Court. the Supreme Court race is interesting as it has candidates of very different judicial attitudes. Tim Burns is running as an unabashed liberal, and essentially as a Democrat, despite this being a non-partisan race. Sauk County Circuit Judge Michale Screnock claims to be non-partisan, and that he will not...

Removing Wetland Protections Needs Serious Deliberation

Kathleen Vinehout

Last Friday afternoon we learned of the 79 bills up for a vote on Tuesday. I spoke with my neighbor shortly after seeing the long list.

“How can they possibly know what they are voting on?” she asked me. I replied there is no time to talk with people and learn the effects of these changes.

Legislation moving quickly through the process makes changes to...

Vinehout - Moving Broadband Forward for Wisconsin

In a recent committee hearing, I argued majority lawmakers were moving broadband expansion forward by press release and little else.

This week Representative Don Vuwink (D-Milton) and I are circulating bills to actually move broadband forward for Wisconsin.

The Senate Revenue, Financial Institutions and Rural Issues committee debated a bill that would...

Subeck - Assembly Republicans Set to Approve Governor Walker’s $90 Million per Year Election Gimmick

MADISON – Representative Lisa Subeck (D-Madison), ranking Democratic member on the Assembly Committee on Public Benefit Reform, issued the following statement ahead of today’s Assembly Vote on special session bills that chip away at the safety net for Wisconsin’s most vulnerable families:


“Too many Wisconsin families work hard...

Eau Claire Governor Forum

On Saturday, Feb. 10 the Citizen Action Organizing Co-op of Western Wisconsin held a candidate forum at the Eau Claire Children's Theater. The event was attended by over 220 people, and gave 7 of the Democratic candidates for governor a chance to explain their positions. This is a video of the entire event. Candidates present were Paul Soglin, Andy Gronik, Matt Flynn, Kelda Roys, Dana Wachs, Mike McCabe, and Mahlon Mitchell. 

Who is Working Under the Governor’s New “Wisconsin Works” Program?

“With more people working in Wisconsin…, we can’t afford to have anyone on the sidelines, we need everyone in the game,” stated Governor Walker, calling for a special session to take up bills he nicknamed, “Wisconsin Works for Everyone.”
The Senate Public Benefits, Licensing and State-Federal Relations Committee, of which I am a member, took up the special session bills in a recent public hearing. The 10 bills make substantial changes in eligibility for FoodShare (...
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Today, March 22

  • Steve Hanson

    Too many differences to list. See Revisions for details.

  • Steve Hanson

    Changes to News Link
    Read more at JS Online (https://www.jsonline.com/story/news/politics/2018/03/22/eric-holder-lawsuit-against-gov-scott-walker-over-wisconsin-special-elections-hits-snag/448743002/)
    Read more at JS Online (https://www.jsonline.com/story/news/politics/2018/03/22/eric-holder-lawsuit-against-gov-scott-walker-over-wisconsin-special-elections-hits-snag/448743002/)
    Previous Article on the lawsuit (uppity-wisconsin/news/whats-issue-wisconsins-special-elections-lawsuit)
    Read more
  • Steve Hanson

    Dane County Court judge Josann Reynolds today ruled that the state must hold a special election for the two seats recently vacated in the State Legislature. Judge Reynolds was appointed by Scott Walker in 2014. The lawsuit was brought by the National Redistricting Foundation, and affiliate of Eric Holder's National Democratic Redistricting Committee. 

    This is largely seen as a blow to Republicans in Wisconsin. Governor Walker had declined to hold the special elections due to an odd interpretation of the law where he had decided special elections did not need to be held because the seats went vacant in 2017 and the law is only clear in the case that the seats were empty in 2017.  Judge Reynolds declared that interpretation "absurd" in the ruling today. Walker had also justified this by the fact that the legislature was due to be dismissed shortly after the resignations, but this argument has been made ludicrous by the fact that the legislature has been brought back into session for special and extraordinary sessions, leaving the districts unrepresented in this lawmaking.

    State Senator Jennifer Schilling posted to Twitter

    Gov. Walker is clearly intimidated by the thought of losing more power when voters go to the polls. His refusal to call special elections means thousands of Wisconsin families will be denied representation for over a year.

    Plaintiffs in the suit testified that they were frustrated by being un-represented in the legislature due to Walker's decision, and many Democrats felt this was simply a way for Walker to hold these seats open so they would not be filled by Democrats in a wave of anti-Republican feeling in the state represented by the recent election of Patty Schachtner to replace Sheila Harsdorf. The two empty seats in question were held by Senator Frank Lasee of DePere and Representative Keith Ripp of Lodi, both of whom resigned their seats to take a position in the Walker administration.

    It is currently not clear when the special elections for Assembly District 42 and Senate District 1 will be held, and certainly not clear who will run in the elections.