Baylor Spears

Baylor Spears

Baylor Spears is a staff reporter for the Wisconsin Examiner. She’s previously written for the Minnesota Reformer and Washingtonian Magazine. A Tennessee-native, she graduated with a degree in journalism from Northwestern University in June 2022.

Republicans and groups push for anti-abortion bills at Senate hearing Tuesday

By: - September 20, 2023

Wisconsin Republicans and anti-abortion groups pushed for legislation that would change the state’s 1849 law and a slate of other abortion-related bills at a Senate hearing Tuesday.  The Senate Licensing, Constitution and Federalism committee heard testimony on the bills just a day after Planned Parenthood restarted abortion services in Wisconsin. The organization announced the decision […]

Milwaukee Brewers stadium

GOP lawmakers propose spending $600 million in public funds on Brewers stadium

By: - September 19, 2023

A plan Republicans announced to spend $600 million in state and local money on renovations and upkeep at American Family Field and keep the Brewers in Milwaukee through 2050 got a cool reception Monday from Gov. Tony Evers and others whose support will be needed for the deal to pass. Announcing the GOP plan at […]

Assembly Republicans pass child care bills with no Democratic support

By: - September 15, 2023

Assembly lawmakers passed a package of six bills on Thursday that Republicans argue will address the growing child care crisis by expanding resources and providing flexibility to child care providers. Child care providers have criticized the bills and none of them received support from Democrats, who said the bills were misguided and wouldn’t solve the […]

Assembly approves tax cut bill and two constitutional amendment proposals

By: - September 13, 2023

Assembly Republicans approved three measures Tuesday during their first floor session after the summer recess, including a bill that would cut taxes by nearly $3 billion, a constitutional amendment proposal that would make it harder to increase taxes and another constitutional amendment proposal that would limit the governor’s power to allocate federal funds. Republican lawmakers […]

Assembly Republicans announce plans to introduce Iowa-style redistricting process

By: - September 12, 2023

Wisconsin Republican lawmakers announced plans Tuesday to introduce and quickly vote on a bill that would implement an “Iowa-style nonpartisan redistricting” process in Wisconsin. Democratic Gov. Tony Evers swiftly rejected lawmakers’ announcement as “bogus.”  The announcement comes as legal challenges to Wisconsin’s gerrymandered maps have threatened Republicans’ power. Republican lawmakers have called for Supreme Court […]

Some zoos could face less regulation under Republican bill

By: - September 7, 2023

Some Wisconsin zoos would be subject to less state regulation under a bill introduced by Republican lawmakers. The Assembly tourism committee heard testimony Wednesday afternoon on the bill.  Wisconsin state law currently prohibits possession, exhibition, propagation, sale and purchasing of wild animals without a relevant license issued by the Department of Natural Resources (DNR). The […]

Assembly committee recommends passage of $2.9 billion tax cut and proposed constitutional amendment

By: - September 6, 2023

The Assembly Ways and Means committee recommended passage of Republicans’ almost $3 billion tax cut plan and a proposed constitutional amendment that would require a two-thirds majority in the Senate and Assembly to pass any tax increases during an executive session on Wednesday.  The proposals were introduced by Republican lawmakers last week in a rejection […]

A nurse holds a vial of COVID-19 vaccine and syringe. (Getty Images)

Republican lawmakers propose banning ‘gain of function’ research

By: - September 6, 2023

A group of Republican lawmakers are seeking to ban “gain of function” research, which involves increasing the potency of certain pathogens in a laboratory setting. The lawmakers’ bill comes in response to incidents at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and as Republicans across the country have targeted this type of research following controversy over the origins […]

Audit finds state economic development agency fails to comply with several policies

By: - September 1, 2023

A recent report from the Legislative Audit Bureau (LAB) found that the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) failed to comply with several of its policies and has not implemented recommendations made in previous years.  WEDC, which is a public-private agency designed to help with business development and innovation through loans, grants, tax credits and technical […]

First Lady Jill Biden, Tammy Baldwin come to Madison to promote expanding cancer screening

By: - September 1, 2023

First Lady Jill Biden visited Madison on Thursday — as the national political parties have turned their focus to Wisconsin in preparation for the 2024 elections — to highlight the importance of expanding access to cancer screenings and treatments. Biden’s visit fell a week after Republicans held their first presidential debate in Milwaukee and after […]

Assembly Speaker Vos announces bipartisan task forces, including one focused on AI

By: - August 24, 2023

Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester) announced on Thursday the creation of four bipartisan task forces including one dedicated to artificial intelligence. The announcement follows Gov. Tony Evers’ Wednesday announcement that he was creating a task force on artificial intelligence (AI) and the state’s workforce. The task forces, which will be led by a Republican chair […]

Democrats propose anti-SLAPP legislation as Republican senator’s lawsuit against Wausau publication continues

By: - August 24, 2023

Wisconsin Democrats proposed a bill on Wednesday that would protect activists, journalists and others from lawsuits meant to silence or intimidate them. It comes as state Sen. Cory Tomczyk (R-Mosinee) is continuing a lawsuit against a local Wausau publication, which has accused him of trying to bankrupt them. The bill, co-authored by Sen. Melissa Agard […]