Ruth Conniff

Ruth Conniff

Ruth Conniff is Editor-in-chief of the Wisconsin Examiner. She formerly served as Editor-in-chief of The Progressive Magazine where she worked for many years from both Madison and Washington, DC. Shortly after Donald Trump took office she moved with her family to Oaxaca, Mexico, and covered U.S./Mexico relations, the migrant caravan, and Mexico’s efforts to grapple with Trump. Conniff is a frequent guest on MSNBC and has appeared on Good Morning America, Democracy Now!, Wisconsin Public Radio, CNN, Fox News and many other radio and television outlets. She has also written for The Nation, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Los Angeles Times, among other publications. Her book "Milked: How an American Crisis Brought Together Midwestern Dairy Farmers and Mexican Workers" won the 2022 Studs and Ida Terkel Award from The New Press.

Wisconsin state flag

Wisconsin budget debate: What kind of state do we want?

By: - February 1, 2023

It was remarkable to watch Republican legislators sit on their hands and scowl as Gov. Tony Evers delivered his assessment in last week’s State of the State address that Wisconsin is in the best fiscal shape in state history, with a record-breaking budget surplus and record high employment. They actually looked mad about it. Evers […]

Screenshot from Hillsdale's 'Teaching for Virtue | K-12 Classical Education' video on the Lake Country Classical Academy website | YouTube

Waukesha County Exec becomes new Lake Country Classical Academy authorizer

By: - January 24, 2023

Waukesha County Executive Paul Farrow signed a letter of intent on Tuesday to authorize Lake Country Classical Academy, the Oconomowoc charter school affiliated with Hillsdale College that was formerly authorized by the Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwe University (LCOOU)  in northern Wisconsin.  Farrow formerly served as the state chairman of the Republican Party of Wisconsin and […]


How are Wisconsin women doing under the 1849 abortion ban?

By: - January 24, 2023

The national Women’s March chose Wisconsin as the location for a massive abortion-rights rally on Sunday, the 50th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, for good reason. Our state, where a draconian 1849 abortion ban rose from the grave after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe, is at the center of the battle for abortion rights. […]

Wealthy businessman is grabbing the big money he has earned. Business success of unicorn startup and SME economic financial concept. 3D illustration rendering

Wisconsin Republicans aim to kill off government with their flat tax

By: - January 20, 2023

Wisconsin Republicans have a plan for what to do with the record-breaking $6.6 billion state budget surplus, and it basically involves putting all the money in a pile and chucking it out the windows of the Capitol. State residents can gather below and snatch the cash as it scatters to the winds.  People who aren’t […]

Elephants at the circus

Front row seat at the circus: Rep. Mark Pocan wants you to watch the dysfunction in the House

By: - January 13, 2023

Wisconsin Congressman Mark Pocan wants everyone to see what’s going on in the U.S. House of Representatives. To that end, he introduced a resolution on Thursday to amend the current House rules to require that cameras show the full chamber during legislative business — not just legislators who are giving speeches. That’s what happened, temporarily, […]

Wisconsin election rally Spindell

What will Wisconsin Republicans do after Spindell spilled the beans on suppressing Black votes?

By: - January 12, 2023

Thanks to the excellent reporting of Bruce Murphy in Urban Milwaukee, we now know that fake Trump elector and Wisconsin Elections Commissioner Robert Spindell crowed about Republicans’ successful efforts to suppress the Black vote in Milwaukee in the November 2022 elections. The quotes Murphy pulls out of Spindell’s congratulatory message to Republicans, as party chair […]

WAUKESHA, WISCONSIN - AUGUST 05: Former President Donald Trump greets supporters during a rally on August 05, 2022 in Waukesha, Wisconsin. Former President Trump endorsed Republican candidate Tim Michels in the governor's race against candidate Rebecca Kleefisch, who is supported by former Vice President Mike Pence. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Wisconsin GOP chair wants to have it both ways on Trump

By: - December 20, 2022

By now most political analysts have agreed that the midterms were, overall, a kick in the butt for Republicans.  As outgoing U.S. Rep. Peter Meijer (R-Mich.) memorably put it  in The Washington Post , after the 2022 midterms, “we have no choice but to heed voters when they say that ‘the grass is green, the […]

Examiner staff

Wisconsin Examiner reporters lead the way

By: - December 16, 2022

Examiner reporters have done a lot of great work over the last year.  Among our most timely stories of 2022 was Deputy Editor Erik Gunn’s reporting on the fallout from the revival of Wisconsin’s Civil War-era abortion ban. The same week the ban went into effect, after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, […]

Wisconsin farm | Screenshot from the film “Get Loud: The Fight for the Soul of Agriculture” on YouTube

Vanity Fair’s ‘Wisconsin Death Trip’: A horror movie version of rural America

By: - December 9, 2022

I first heard about the new “Wisconsin Death Trip” story from a friend in North Carolina. “After reading this Vanity Fair piece, not so sure I wanna come visit y’all,” she wrote.  Wisconsin winters often scare away visitors from the South. But a Nov. 30 glossy magazine feature by journalist, best-selling author and Dartmouth professor […]

Michael Monthey, an apprentice in the Dairy Grazing Apprenticeship program, moves a herd of grazing cows to a new grazing area on Scott Mericka's farm in Dodgeville.

Farmers and workers vs. Big Food

By: - December 7, 2022

During a Tuesday forum sponsored by a coalition of farmers, community leaders and sustainable agriculture experts at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Dennis Olson, a researcher with the United Food & Commercial Workers union, laid out a vision for changes to our food system that would address the needs of farmers, workers and everyone concerned about […]

A beat up, battered US flag hanging on a baseball backstop

The war on democracy isn’t over

By: - December 2, 2022

Let’s celebrate the good news: When the Republican chair of the Wisconsin Elections Commission quietly certified the results of the 2022 election this week, the Big Lie fizzled, along with doomsday scenarios involving GOP candidates refusing to accept the results and armed militia members waging a campaign of intimidation — or worse — against voters. […]

Little girl (two years old) is sitting on the floor and playing with her building blocks. She is building a high tower and are just about to put another block to it. She is sitting with her back against the viewer, totally lost in her play.

Stability or disruption for Wisconsin schools?

By: - November 23, 2022

Parent-teacher conferences just ended — a process akin to speed-dating, during which my husband and I met with our high school sophomore’s teachers in a flurry of quick, 10-minute Zoom sessions. As frenetic as the process was, it was reassuring to talk to the grownups who are teaching our daughter and to hear what she’s […]