Wisconsin Wave

Uniting Wisconsinites for democracy and shared prosperity

This is an archived version of the Wisconsin Wave website.

CAP TIMES: GOP's redistricting plan splits up communities of color

When Fitchburg Mayor Shawn Pfaff first was elected to office in April, one of his first priorities was to create new voting districts that reflected the city's diversity.

To that end, a committee created one district that circled Fitchburg's farms, another that included its urban area, and two that included more minority voters than whites.

Tom Hayden to speak at 2011 Democracy Convention

After over fifty years of activism, politics and writing, Tom Hayden is still a leading voice for ending the wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Pakistan, for erasing sweatshops, saving the environment, and reforming politics through a more participatory democracy. Hayden was famously a founding member of the Students for a Democratic Society in 1961, and author of its visionary call, the Port Huron Statement, described by Howard Zinn as "one of those historic documents which represents an era."

THE NATION: ALEC exposed for rigging elections

In the heat of Wisconsin’s brutal battle over Governor Scott Walker’s assaults on unions, local democracy, public education and social services, one of his closest allies suddenly shifted direction. State Representative Robin Vos, Republican co-chair of the powerful Legislative Joint Finance Committee, determined that making it harder for college students, seniors and low-income citizens to vote was an immediate legislative priority, and pressed lawmakers to focus on enacting one of the most restrictive voter ID laws in the nation.

MJS: Republican senator coerced into supporting "budget-repair" bill?

A prominent business leader from state Sen. Rob Cowles' district was stunned when the veteran lawmaker explained why he voted in favor of Gov. Scott Walker's controversial budget-repair plan.

Cowles had contacted the business leader earlier this year to ask for the person's support in his upcoming recall election.

Eau Claire bar holds Miller/Coors beer dump

On Thursday I went over to the Fire House Bar in Eau Claire (by the way, highly recommended for drinking Wisconsin craft brews). They were holding an event to protest the new changes to the beer distribution laws that were put in as part of the meandering budget process.

MJS: Major Walker donor gets probation for campaign finance violations

West Bend - William Gardner, president and chief executive officer of Wisconsin & Southern Railroad Co. and a major donor to Gov. Scott Walker, was sentenced Thursday to two years of probation for violating state campaign finance laws.

Washington County Circuit Judge James Pouros also sentenced Gardner to 100 hours of community service at Tenor High School, a charter school in Milwaukee.

CAP TIMES: Women's groups, lawmakers call for Prosser to take a leave from Supreme Court

Women's rights groups and women lawmakers from the city of Madison, Dane County and state Legislature are calling on Justice David Prosser to take a leave from the Supreme Court while an investigation proceeds into allegations that he physically assaulted Justice Ann Walsh Bradley during an argument.

HUFFINGTON POST: Corporations Have 'Captured' 88 Percent Of All Of Post-Recession Income Growth

Corporations have reaped in approximately 88 percent of the national income growth since the economic recovery began, states a report by Northeastern University, cited by The New York Times.

THE PROGRESSIVE: Hundreds protest Walker at Devil's Lake centennial

Wis. Gov. Scott Walker came to Devil’s Lake State Park Saturday morning for a ceremony honoring the centennial of the park, but he found more protesters there than well-wishers.

An hour before Walker spoke, about 80 protesters gathered at the entrance of the park and walked in a procession that was led by two of the organizers, Sue and Tom Holmes, Sue was carrying an American flag and Tom the Wisconsin state flag.

WDC warns of a "creeping fascism" in GOP backed bill to eliminate campaign finance transparency

[Update on 9/12/11- The Assembly will be begin disucssing this issue directly (AB196) beginning September 13th, 2011.  See this link for a schedule of the Assembly's upcoming buisensss]

YES!: National Nurses United rallies for financial transaction tax

Sandy Falwell, who has worked in a neonatal intensive care unit for some 20 years, could tell plenty of stories about the impact of the Great Recession on the lives of her patients. One of the most painful: After a woman gave birth to a 2-pound baby, she told Falwell that she blamed herself for her baby’s premature birth. During her pregnancy she had been unable to afford insulin treatments for her diabetes—in part because she was taking care of her elderly parents.

DAILY CENSORED: How the recall elections could be stolen

I cannot watch enough videos of the people in Wisconsin as you bold, brave, most decent Wisconsonites are out in the streets – resisting, doing non-violent civil disobedience/direct action, dissenting, protesting, rising up, standing up to and speaking and singing truth to power in the face of Walker and his cronies.

What is happening in Wisconsin now is a model for the whole country. Not only your  honorable actions, but also what Walker and the thugs behind him are trying to do in Wisconsin.

MJS: Republicans in Legislature may try to make recalls harder

Republican leaders in the Legislature said Monday they would consider introducing legislation this fall to make it harder to recall state officials.

Assembly Speaker Jeff Fitzgerald (R-Horicon) said the upcoming recall elections had launched the state Senate into "full campaign mode" and was slowing down the legislative process.

Also, Gov. Scott Walker - speaking with reporters in Washington - called the recalls a "distraction" for most Wisconsin residents.

WSJ: Solidarity singer punched in face by concealed carry supporter

A participant in the daily, non-violent Solidarity Sing Along at the state Capitol suffered a broken tooth when he was punched in the face by one of two men who were draping a "Don't Tread on Me" flag over the heads of singers, the leader of the sing-along said.

State Department of Administration spokeswoman Carla Vigue said the singer who was punched, Michael J. Dickman of Madison, saw the two men draping the flag over others and came over and grabbed it. Dickman was cited by Capitol Police for disorderly conduct, she said.

WSJ: Iron ore mine plans on hold in northern Wisconsin

The company looking to build a $1.5 billion iron ore mine in northern Wisconsin has stopped the project until state lawmakers agree on a new set of rules for reviewing such projects.

State Sen. Robert Jauch, D-Poplar, said this week that Gogebic Taconite is turning its attention toward sites in Michigan and Minnesota after a bid to push through new legislation failed recently.

Opposition lawmakers outline how budget will destroy Wisconsin communities

It’s a sad day in Wisconsin. Legislative Republicans attacked middle-class families across Wisconsin when they rubber-stamped Gov. Scott Walker’s deeply flawed budget. This wasteland budget will take us backward and turn Wisconsin into Wississippi in many ways.

Here are some ways the Walker/GOP budget hurts middle-class families, our freedom and our future:

• It takes taxpayer investment away from our public schools, some of the best in the nation, and gives it to unaccountable private voucher schools.

MJS: GOP primaries to be held in recalls of Senate Democrats

Two Republicans have filed nomination papers in each of three recall elections against Democratic state senators, meaning that July 19 likely will be primary day in all three races, with final elections Aug. 16.

The deadline for filing nomination papers was 5 p.m. Tuesday; 400 valid signatures were required for filing.

In the 12th Senate District, represented by Sen. Jim Holperin (D-Conover), Kim Simac, a tea party leader from Eagle River, will face Robert Lussow of Tomahawk, who is chairman of the Lincoln County Board.

CAP TIMES: Bipartisan group asks Walker to veto beer distribution bill

A bipartisan group of seven lawmakers stepped in on the side of the state's craft brewers Tuesday, asking Gov. Scott Walker to veto a bill that favors beer distributors and MillerCoors.

The bill, which was stuck into the budget without a public hearing, would solidify the state's three-tier beer system by preventing brewers, distributors and any retail outlet that sells beer from owning a license to operate in more than one of these business categories.

WSJ: Great Dane, Vintage, to no longer sell MillerCoors beer

Two Madison brewpub businesses have stopped selling MillerCoors beers in support of other craft brewers who fear the effects of the beer distribution provisions in the state budget.

MillerCoors is a key supporter of the legislation, along with the Tavern League of Wisconsin and Wisconsin Grocers Association. 

Mark Pocan: State budget taxes poor, gives to the rich

Last night, I was the second member of the Assembly Democratic caucus to talk about the Republican budget on the floor of the Assembly. I’ve received good feedback from my speech, so I’d like to summarize it here:

1) Republicans have created so many corporate tax breaks in this budget that the Legislative Fiscal Bureau pegs the 10-year cost in reduced revenue to the state at $2.3 billion.

2) Republicans use credit card spending to push $338 million dollars in state debt off into the future, costing us an additional $89.9 million in interest.

The Cap Times reports on UW system admins positive reaction to budget; links to articles about Martin's departure

Catching up on a couple higher education-related items ...

** Although no one is doing back flips because of an impending cut of $250 million in state taxpayer support over the next two years, University of Wisconsin System officials are generally pleased with the budget bill now awaiting Gov. Scott Walker's signature.

Op-ed in the Cap Times promotes a 'Wisconsin Values Budget' over Walker's devastating budget

Gov. Scott Walker and his supporters in the Legislature have asserted throughout the budget process that the only way to balance the state's books is to raise taxes on low-income workers and make slashing cuts to public services. It did not have to be this way.

CAP TIMES: Women particularly harmed by state budget

Don’t let legislators who voted for Gov. Scott Walker’s trash-and-burn budget try to tell you they believe that all women are full citizens with equal rights and equal protections under the law.

They don’t.

Republican state senators, such as Alberta Darling and Sheila Harsdorf, voted for a budget that actually increases expenses for the supposedly cash-strapped state in order to fund discrimination against women.

THE PROGRESSIVE: Netroots Nation proves Wisconsin uprising still inspiring activists nationwide

At the sixth annual Netroots Nations gathering, the Wisconsin Uprising has taken center stage. So many attendees are inspired by the organizing efforts that Wisconsinites get rounds of applause wherever we go.

Several panels on the first day of this progressive blogging conference focused on the fight-back against the Governor Scott Walker’s radical rightwing agenda.

“Wisconsin is Ground Zero right now,” said Adam Green, the co-founder of the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, a PAC that supports “bold progressive candidates,” according to its website.

THE PROGRESSIVE: Wisconsin's worker's uprising demobilized by some in the movement

The mood in Wisconsin is dejected.

After a string of defeats, first losing the state supreme court race against David Prosser, then losing the decision at the state supreme court on the anti-collective bargaining law, and finally losing the vote on Walker’s hideous budget in the state legislature, people are down.

People see that Walker won everything big that he asked for, and despite all the great activism, we don’t have anything to show for it—at least not yet. As a result, lots of people are going to suffer.

WSJ: Labor groups file suit to block parts of collective bargaining law

One day after the state Supreme Court cleared the way for Gov. Scott Walker's controversial bill limiting collective bargaining to become law, several labor organizations filed a federal lawsuit Wednesday in an effort to prevent some of its provisions from taking effect in federal court.

The groups are challenging the constitutionality of the bill they say would destroy collective bargaining rights for all but a select group of public sector workers deemed "public safety" employees, including certain firefighters and law enforcement officers.

WSJ: Assembly passes budget after 13 hours of blistering debate; Senate next

The state Assembly passed Gov. Scott Walker's state budget about 3 a.m. Thursday, sending it to the state Senate, which was taking it up Thursday.

After 13 hours of contentious debate, the Assembly passed the plan 60-38 with all Republicans and one independent for it and all 38 Democrats against. The 99-member Assembly has one vacant seat.

"We're doing the job we were elected to do," Republican Assembly Majority Leader Scott Suder said. "We balanced the books and we did it without a $5 billion federal government bailout."

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