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Archive for the ‘Wisconsin’ Category

HuffPost  Posted: 06/05/2012  8:09 pm

The Wisconsin recall election results have all eyes on the Badger State.

Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett (D) challenged Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) in Tuesday’s gubernatorial contest.

HuffPost’s Mark Blumenthal reports:

The final round of polls on Tuesday’s Wisconsin recall election are something of a puzzle, although the uncertainty is more about the margin separating the candidates than the outcome. While virtually all show Republican Gov. Scott Walker leading his Democratic challenger, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, they disagree about the size of Walker’s lead.Six polls completed in the last 10 days have shown everything from a 12-percentage-point Walker lead to a dead-even race. One explanation for the difference is sponsorship: Internal polls sponsored by the Democratic campaigns have typically shown a closer contest. Beyond that, although the polls differ considerably in their methods, nothing stands out to explain why some show Walker doing better than others.

Five additional contests were held in Wisconsin on Tuesday.

Below, a live blog of the latest developments to unfold.

LIVE BLOG & MORE HERE

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Think Progress reporter Lee Fang interviewed David Koch in a sidewalk ambush last year.

February 20, 2012 10:00 AM

Crooks and Liars  By- Susie Madrak

Boy, the apple didn’t fall far from the tree, huh? What a swell family those Kochs are:

Billionaire David Koch has vowed to defend Wisconsin governor Scott Walker against the union-backed recall election underway in that state. In aninterview with the Palm Beach Post, Koch said that, “We’ve spent a lot of money in Wisconsin. We’re going to spend more.”

The we in question is Koch and his equally well-off brother Charles, who together have financed much of the conservative tea party movement through their group Americans For Prosperity.

Koch also told the Post that “there will be no stopping union power” if they win the recall election versus Walker, who jammed through legislation that strips public employee unions of their power to collectively bargain.

In the interview, Koch lavishes praise on his father Fred Koch who was a founding member of the far-right John Birch Society.

Fred Koch once wrote that the “colored man looms large in the Communist plan to take over America” and claimed welfare was designed to create a “vicious race war.”

The John Birch Society was founded in opposition to the civil rights movement, and promoted numerous conspiracy theories of a UN-led “one world” government. The group also famously opposed fluoridation of water, which it described as a communist mind-control plot.

SOURCE

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Walkerville tent city up and running

Crooks and Liars
By scarce
June 06, 2011 05:13 AM

MADISON (WKOW) — The makeshift community of protesters against Governor Scott Walker’s biennium budget is up and running.

The two-week long “Walkerville” tent city began Saturday with a kickoff event at 7 pm.

“This is all part of the anger and frustration at politicians that aren’t listening to working class folks from around this state,” said organizer Peter Rickman.

Protesters are calling it “Walkerville” after the “Hooverville” towns set up during the Great Depression.

Overnight camping is allowed along certain streets on Capitol Square, but not on Capitol grounds.

“If the people’s house is going to be closed down we’ve gotta have a presence known,” said Walkerville organizer Peter Rickman.

Rickman hopes to bring back the presence everyone remembers in February.

“We want to hold the politicians accountable for the bad choices they’re making,” said Rickman.

Each day will have a theme. Sunday – a rally was held for K-12 education.

“We’ll take this message of dignity for all workers across this state,” said Peggy Coyne, MTI President during a speech.

“It’s the impact of those dollars across the state that really indicate how bad the choices are going to be,” said Mary Bell, President of the Wisconsin Education Association Council.

“This budget is going to have a long lasting devastating impact on the kind of life we enjoy in Wisconsin,” said Bell.

VIDEO AND MORE HERE

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Wisconsin Democrats Win Seat That Was Held By Republicans For Sixteen Years In Special Election

Think Progress- By Zaid Jilani at 9:50 am

Wisconsin marks the birthplace of a burgeoning Main Street Movement defending the economic livelihood of the middle class. The movement was spawned after Gov. Scott Walker (R-WI) and his GOP allies passed new laws stripping public employees of their collective bargaining rights. Last night, Wisconsin Republicans suffered what was perhaps the first electoral defeat resulting from a backlash to their radical anti-labor policies as Democrats won a special election for an assembly seat held by the GOP for the past 16 years:

Democrat Steve Doyle defeated Republican John Lautz for the Wisconsin District 94 Assembly, flipping a seat held by Republicans for 16 years in a race that focused attention on Republican Gov. Scott Walker’s plan to curtail collective bargaining right for most public employees. With 92% of precincts reporting, Doyle won 54% to 46%, based on unofficial results in Tuesday’s special election. The race flips a GOP Assembly seat for the Democrats, who remain in the minority.

The seat was previously held by Mike Huebsch, who Walker picked in January to serve as secretary of administration. Huebsch was first elected in 1994. The district covers rural La Crosse County and parts of Monroe County.

Doyle actually won despite “a barrage of television and radio attacks by third-party groups, along with mailings from the Jobs First Coalition, a Brookfield, Wis.-based group tied to Scott Jensen, the former Republican state Assembly speaker who left office in 2002 amid misconduct allegations.” “I look at it as a rejection of attack ads,” he told the La Crosse Tribune.

SOURCE

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The “Glory Days” of Scott Walker May Already be Over

Submitted by mark karlin on Tue, 04/26/2011 – 8:34pm.

MARK KARLIN, EDITOR OF BUZZFLASH FOR TRUTHOUT

These are not the glory days that Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker was envisioning as he assumed his Napoleonic reign.

Walker, for instance, is openly complaining that the apparently successful effort to initiate recall elections for at least five (now six) Republican state senators who have sided with him, well, that such exercises of democracy are making it difficult for him to govern in a “republic.”

That may explain why the Wisconsin legislature – otherwise known, perhaps, as the rubber-stamp body of the autocratic ruler of the state of “Walkerstan” – is going to try to make it extremely difficult for university students to vote. Shrink the pro-union and progressive vote and win elections by making sure that older white Republicans get the privilege of casting a ballot.

Walker is also hoping to rely on the Koch brothers and other wealthy sources, such as the Bradley Foundation in Milwaukee, to keep the public misinformed. As BuzzFlash first reported, the Kochs are putting quite a bankroll into a Facebook campaign to recruit right-wing advocates for “conservative think tanks” around the nation.

And as evidence of the rather suspicious, unsavory and unethical relationships among Walker, David Prosser and Waukesha County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus continue to mount, Walker has been reduced to taking claim for creating jobs that were already announced by his Democratic predecessor.

As the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported on April 24:

Little did anyone know that Gov. Scott Walker was such a huge fan of recycling.

Just look at his latest jobs announcement.

Walker recently took credit in a widely reported press conference for creating 125 jobs at a state manufacturing plant, even though then-Gov. Jim Doyle announced the same new jobs back in December.

About now, Walker may be remembering that he personally can be recalled after a year in office.

You probably won’t hear the governor of “Walkerstan” playing Bruce Springsteen’s “Glory Days” any time soon.

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“Palin Was Practically Booed Back to Wasilla” By Pro-Union Protesters in Madison, Wisconsin

MARK KARLIN, EDITOR OF BUZZFLASH FOR TRUTHOUT

Submitted by mark karlin on Wed, 04/20/2011 – 9:32pm.

Why do Tea Party rallies get so much media attention, even when their gatherings appear to be shrinking in size?

That is because the corporate mainstream media has a bias toward covering protests from the right, but virtually ignores progressive crowds. This was recently evidenced by the scant national coverage given to the unprecedented anti-Scott Walker protests of up to 100,000 people in the relatively small city of Madison.

So, when Sarah Palin appeared in Madison on Saturday, April 16, it was not surprising that CNN described her as “energizing” the crowd, even though she could barely be heard much beyond the “feed” mike – the boos and chants of disapproval were that loud from the protesters.

Matthew Rothschild, editor of The Progressive (which is located in Madison) attended the Palin event and estimated that the protesters were double the size of the Koch brothers’ “Americans for Prosperity” crowd:

There were about 1,500 tea partiers, many bused in by Americans for Prosperity, the rightwing group funded by the Koch brothers.

The tea partiers were surrounded by about 3,000 or more pro-labor supporters, who let their presence be felt with raucous chants and boos and cries of “Shame, shame, shame!”

“Recall Walker,” the protesters chanted over and over again, as well as, “Hey, hey, ho, ho, Scott Walker has got to go.”

In fact, Thom Hartmann points out in a television report that Andrew Breitbart (former Drudge protege and current right-wing “pundit” and provocateur) was so incensed by the chants of the protesters that he shouted, “Go to Hell!” (three times) at them from the podium. And that was before Palin even spoke.

Hartmann also trenchantly dissects how the corporate media frames its reports to give an inaccurate account of events with a slant that favors the right wing and status quo.

The true story of Sarah Palin’s appearance in Madison was that, according to Hartmann, “Palin was practically booed back to Wasilla.”

But you wouldn’t know that from watching the cable or evening news.

*****

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Scott Walker's map of Wisconsin / DC Badger

Wisconsin Democrats to file recall petitions against Randy Hopper

by Chris Bowers for Daily Kos

Thu Apr 07, 2011 at 01:50 PM EDT

Fresh off a remarkable Supreme Court victory in Wisconsin, the pressure on conservatives in the Badger state goes up yet another notch. Democrats will file recall petition signatures against Republican state Senator Randy Hopper later today:

Union and Democratic Party supporters are expected to gather at rallies in Oshkosh, Fond du Lac and Waupun today before heading down to Madison to deliver the required signatures to force a recall election against Sen. Randy Hopper.(…)Fond du Lac Democratic Party Chairman Rich Mantz said the official announcement will be made Thursday at rallies scheduled in Oshkosh at 11 a.m., at 12:30 p.m. at Veterans Park in Fond du Lac and on the front steps of Waupun City Hall at 2 p.m.

These rallies are a key part of closing out the signature gathering process. Last Friday, when Democrats held rallies before submitting the recall petition against Dan Kapanke, they gathered another 1,000 signatures.

Randy Hopper is believed to be one of the more vulnerable Senators. Polling shows him to be the second-weakest Republican (see here and here), trailing to a generic opponent outside the margin of error in two polls. His problems are exacerbated by a scandal with his mistress receiving a state job at a salary 35% higher than her predecessor. At Daily Kos, we ran online ads in Hopper’s district to highlight the scandal, and those ads received 4,764,678 page views in one week.

MORE HERE

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WI Update: Operation Badger Justice~ Anti-Union Bill Restraining Order now INDEFINITE!

Daily Kos- by invisiblewoman

Fri Apr 01, 2011 at 05:20 PM EDT

From Mr. Fantastic and the Invisible Woman comes this sweet tidbit of joy, courtesy of Wispolitics:

Bargaining bill restraining order remains in effect; DA rests case Judge Maryann Sumi’s temporary restraining order against the implementation of the collective bargaining bill will remain in effect indefinitely.

The plaintiff in the case, Dane County District Attorney Ismael Ozanne, rested his side of the case this afternoon, but Sumi said she could not set a date to take more testimony because the GOP legislators named as defendants in the case are still covered under legislative immunity.

Assistant AG Maria Lazar had asked for the restraining order to be vacated, arguing the hearing could not conclude without the participation of defendants Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, Senate President Mike Ellis, Assembly Speaker Jeff Fitzgerald and Assembly Majority Leader Scott Suder.

But Sumi said that just as those lawmakers are entitled to their day in court, they are also not entitled to the suspension of the current restraining order.

“It remains in effect until further order of the court,” Sumi said, adding that she doesn’t know when that will be. The judge said the defendants in question could waive their immunity, allow their attorneys to move forward without them or wait until their immunity expires.

Bob Jambois, attorney for Assembly Minority Leader Peter Barca, responded that if those lawmakers “find this to be an inconvenience,” they would still be able to pass the bill again with 24 hours notice of a conference committee hearing and legislative sessions.

Sumi requested briefs from both sides on seeking declaratory judgment, the nature of indispensible parties in the case and time limits for service of process while immunity is in effect. That brief is due April 25 for the district attorney’s office, followed by defendants’ briefs on May 16 and a reply from the DA on May 23

. (more…)

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First Wisconsin recall petition to be filed against Republican state Senator Dan Kapanke

by Chris Bowers for Daily Kos

Fri Apr 01, 2011 at 09:50 AM EDT

Please, support the recall effort by contributing $5 to the Democratic Party of Wisconsin and the Wisconsin Democratic state Senate Committee.

Recall petition organizers in Wisconsin will file their signatures today against Dan Kapanke, the most vulnerable of all the eight Republican state Senators:

La Crosse area Democrats say they will file petitions today with enough signatures to trigger a recall election of Sen. Dan Kapanke, one of eight Senate Republicans targeted over votes to curtail collective bargaining rights for public workers. If approved, it would be just the fifth recall election of a Wisconsin legislator.Recall organizer Pat Scheller said volunteers have gathered more than the 15,588 signatures needed and that they plan to take them to Madison after a noon rally today at La Crosse City Hall.

Kapanke represents a district that President Obama won with 61% of the vote in 2008. Our Daily Kos / PPP poll shows him trailing a generic Democrat by a whopping 55%-41%. An earlier MoveOn / Survey USA  poll showed Kapanke trailing a generic opponent by an even worse 57%-41% margin.

Kapanke is in a lot of trouble. He is also not alone. Last week, recall petition organizers against Republican state Senator Randy Hopper announced they had enough signatures, too:

Efforts to recall Republican State Senator Randy Hopper from Fon du Lac have reached another milestone, as organizers issue a call for volunteers to turn in any remaining petitions to be counted. Organizer Scott Dillman says he’s sure they have enough signatures to trigger the recall, but he can’t give exact figures yet. He says, processing all the information they’ve collected so far will take a week.

Hopper, a freshman who only  won his seat by 163 votes, trails a generic Democrat 49%-44% in our polling. In the MoveOn / Survey USA polling, he trails 54%-43%. Both polls were taken before the scandal about Hopper’s mistress receiving a state job with a 35% raise exploded. Since Monday morning, our ad highlighting the scandal has over 2,500,000 page views in Randy Hopper’s district, even though his district has only about 175,000 residents.

Even though the deadline is May 2nd, organizers in a few other recall districts either already have, or will soon pass, the number of signatures required to file recall petitions. As such, we will soon be entering the election phase of the recall campaign. Please, support the recall effort by contributing $5 to the Democratic Party of Wisconsin and the Wisconsin Democratic state Senate Committee. The recall elections themselves won’t take place for at least another 10 weeks, and likely longer, but we must be relentless in our pressure against Wisconsin Republicans.

For more discussion, please see the rec list diary by nik.

SOURCE

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