Erik Gunn

Erik Gunn

Deputy Editor Erik Gunn reports and writes on work and the economy, health policy and related subjects, for the Wisconsin Examiner. He spent 24 years as a freelance writer for Milwaukee Magazine, Isthmus, The Progressive, BNA Inc., and other publications, winning awards for investigative reporting, feature writing, beat coverage, business writing, and commentary. An East Coast native, he previously covered labor for The Milwaukee Journal after reporting for newspapers in upstate New York and northern Illinois. He's a graduate of Beloit College (English Comp.) and the Columbia School of Journalism. Off hours he is the Examiner's resident Springsteen and Jackson Browne fanboy and model railroad nerd.

Elephant Republican and Donkey Dems with lightning in front of flag Image by chayka1270 from Pixabay

New Marquette Law School poll points to tight races for Senate, governor

By: - September 15, 2022

The race between Republican Sen. Ron Johnson and his Democratic challenger, Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes, has tightened into a dead heat, with Johnson now leading by a percentage point in the latest Marquette Law School poll. Democratic Gov. Tony Evers maintains a slight 3-point lead over Republican challenger Tim Michels in the Marquette poll released […]

UW Health, nurses reach agreement on resolving question of union rights

By: - September 12, 2022

UW Health, nurses and the union seeking to represent them have agreed to a legal process to establish whether the hospital system can recognize and bargain with a union. Hospital and union representatives along with Gov. Tony Evers announced the deal Monday — averting a threatened three-day walkout by nurses that was to begin Tuesday […]

Needles are seen littering the pavement in a lane near to a Safe Consumption van set up by Peter Krykant on September 25, 2020 in Glasgow, Scotland. Peter a recovering heroin addict and former drugs worker, has set up the drug consumption van where addicts can inject safely and take drugs under supervision. (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

Finance committee adds police to $31M opiate settlement spending plan

By: - September 9, 2022

A three-week squabble over how the state should spend its first $31 million payment from litigation against the opiate industry ended Thursday as the Legislature’s budget committee approved a revised plan for using  the money to combat the state’s opioid addiction crisis. Republicans on the Joint Finance Committee rewrote a plan originally drafted by the […]

union rally for Meriter nurses

Union organizers share their experiences as the economy shows workers their power

By: - September 8, 2022

A half-dozen activists were wrapping up a 90-minute conversation Wednesday when Conner Erickson offered his tip to people trying to organize a union where they work.  “Frustration is an incredibly strong weapon that spreads rapidly,” said Erickson. “Reassuring folks that their frustrations are not theirs alone — that does a lot for a worker who’s […]

Monkey Pox Lesions

DHS gives monkeypox vaccine wider distribution

By: - September 7, 2022

The vaccine for monkeypox virus will get wider distribution, Wisconsin health officials said Tuesday, as the eligible population has expanded and the reserve of vaccine supplies has increased. The rate of infections from the virus has been declining in recent weeks, said Dr. Ryan Westergaard, chief medical officer for the bureau of communicable diseases in […]

Jacobsen Vos Steen

Democrat’s write-in Assembly bid puts Vos in three-way match after narrow primary win

By: - September 6, 2022

With a write-in Republican challenger already running against Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester) in November, a two-time Democratic rival is joining the race as well. Joel Jacobsen announced Tuesday he would run as a write-in candidate for the 63rd district state Assembly seat Vos holds. In a statement and in an interview, Jacobsen identified his […]

MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - SEPTEMBER 05: President Joe Biden speaks to a gathering of union workers at Laborfest on September 05, 2022 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Biden makes a hit with union workers in Labor Day visit to Milwaukee

By: - September 6, 2022

Under bright sunshine at Milwaukee’s first official Labor Day celebration since 2019, President Joe Biden rallied 6,000 union members in a speech that lived up to the holiday’s unofficial role: kicking off the final stretch of the fall election campaign season. Biden’s speech, delivered at Laborfest on the Milwaukee Summerfest grounds, was an opportunity for […]

Colectivo workers, labor activists, and IBEW members stand in solidarty outside of a Collectivo location in the Riverwest neighborhood of Milwaukee. (Photo | Isiah Holmes)

Report finds conditions are looking up for workers in Wisconsin — including increased power

By: - September 5, 2022

Unemployment is down, wages are up and Wisconsin workers are more willing to talk union this Labor Day.  That’s the summary of the newest State of Working Wisconsin report from COWS, a University of Wisconsin research center that looks at the state of the economy through the eyes of the broad workforce. “The question we’re […]

U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson argues against direct payments of $1,200 to families during debate on the next round of federal COVID relief on Dec. 18 (Screenshot from C-Span)

How government aid helped Ron Johnson

By: - September 2, 2022

In his two terms in office, Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) has run hard against government spending. Since his first Senate campaign in 2010, the Oshkosh Republican has described himself as an outsider and business creator who has succeeded without government help.  He has dismissed big-ticket bills as wasteful, telling a TV host in June that […]

non-union pickets

Nonunion workers turn to federal labor law to challenge employers

By: - September 1, 2022

After what they said were repeated problems with their pay and working conditions, employees at a Madison apparel and screen printing business sent the owner a petition last week describing their frustration. They wanted a meeting at which they could discuss complaints that they said included missed payroll, stifling hot work rooms and a lack of […]

Person with lab coat putting pills from an orange prescription bottle into her hand.

Advocates unpack the details in new climate, health and tax law

By: - August 31, 2022

In the two weeks since President Joe Biden signed a massive bill that incorporates health care, climate and tax measures into law, the legislation’s supporters have been working to convey its details to the public. The legislation, which the authors dubbed the Inflation Reduction Act, passed Congress with votes from Democratic lawmakers only. Biden signed […]

UW Health nurses vote for 3-day walkout in September to gain union rights

By: - August 26, 2022

A Wednesday night vote by hundreds of nurses working for UW Health to strike if the hospital system’s management does not recognize their union followed months of conversations, meetings and strategizing among more than 2,000 nurses employed by the largest health care provider in Madison. Nurses involved in the campaign say that the decision to […]