Politics & Government

"I voted" stickers in Primrose (Photo by Henry Redman)

Voting rights advocates air worries about onslaught of new state election laws

BY: - April 2, 2021

WASHINGTON—A U.S. House elections panel on Thursday heard from witnesses about the need to craft a new formula that identifies which states or jurisdictions have problematic histories of racial discrimination when it comes to access to the ballot box.   The hearing in the House Administration Committee’s elections subcommittee also served as a way for […]

President Joe Biden signing executive orders in the Oval Office

Biden pairs ‘down payment’ on climate crisis with rebuilding infrastructure

BY: - April 1, 2021

The sprawling $2 trillion infrastructure and jobs proposal President Joe Biden laid out Wednesday in Pennsylvania includes significant spending to address climate change, providing what conservationists say is an important “down payment” to address the crisis.  A 25-page outline calls for $10 billion for a Civilian Climate Corps, $16 billion for capping abandoned wells and […]

street art reading Stay Safe defaced by crossing out and words Masks off

Voluntary compliance is all that’s left after high court ruling

BY: - April 1, 2021

With the only mandatory statewide measure against the coronavirus pandemic now history, a divided state Supreme Court has left battling the virus up to the voluntary choices of each Wisconsin resident — and to the power of local health departments. Wednesday’s 4-3 ruling by the court’s conservative majority ended the most recent state of emergency […]


Restoring sanity to Wisconsin government

BY: - April 1, 2021

The conservative majority on the Wisconsin Supreme Court overturns an emergency public health order in the middle of a pandemic — even as new COVID cases rise. Writing for the majority, Justice Brian Hagedorn acknowledges that the virus is “dangerous” and has “taken far too many lives,” but the important issue, he writes — bolstered […]

chalkboard school

Election committee members schooled during latest non-public hearing

BY: - April 1, 2021

The Assembly continued its partisan “investigation” into the 2020 presidential elections with a third invite-only hearing before the Assembly Committee on Campaigns and Elections on Wednesday.  While Democrats and voting access advocacy groups have labeled past hearings a “sham,” the answers from the sole invited guest were in marked contrast to the first two hearings […]

Woman in a U.S. flag mask on her face

State Supreme Court ends health emergency, mask order

BY: - March 31, 2021

Gov. Tony Evers’ successive health emergencies in response to the novel coronavirus responsible for COVID-19 were unlawful after the first one expired, the state Supreme Court ruled Wednesday, ending the current statewide mask requirement just a few days before it was due to expire. The current health emergency declaration, Executive Order 105 — issued after […]

Eye with shadow in the colors of the transgender flag

Transgender Day of Visibility amid the ‘Dark Ages’ of public policy

BY: - March 31, 2021

Sen. Tim Carpenter (D-Milwaukee) authored a resolution proclaiming March 31 as Wisconsin’s Transgender Day of Visibility to “acknowledge, celebrate, and elevate transgender and nonbinary people across the world and in Wisconsin.” In the Wisconsin Legislature, there are currently two pending bills that were introduced by Rep. Barbara Dittrich (R-Oconomowoc) and Sen. Kathy Bernier (R- Chippewa […]

Rachel Maes

Trans judicial candidate, ignored by incumbent and harassed by right wing groups, wants to focus on local issues

BY: - March 31, 2021

Green Bay City Attorney Rachel Maes says she decided to run for Judge Kendall Kelley’s seat on the Brown County Circuit Court after frustrating experiences arguing a case in his courtroom.  In her campaign, she says if elected she’ll work to reduce the racial disparities in Wisconsin’s prisons, cut down a backlog in cases and […]

WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 18: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) receives a Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine in the U.S. Capitol Building. (Photo by Anna Moneymaker-Pool/Getty Images)

Special Report: Dozens of members of Congress are vaccinated against COVID-19, but some still hesitate

BY: and - March 31, 2021

WASHINGTON — Members of Congress were among the first people in the U.S. to have access to the sought-after COVID-19 vaccine when the initial doses became available in December. Three months later, a States Newsroom survey across 22 states—making up a large swath of Congress—found at least 155 members of the U.S. House and Senate […]

Assembly Republicans want property owners at the front of the line for COVID aid

BY: - March 31, 2021

Having lost their bid for legislative control of federal COVID funds, Assembly Republicans on Tuesday sketched out three items on which they want Wisconsin to spend some of its $3.2 billion in new federal COVID relief — starting with $1 billion to property owners based on the value of their property taxes. Reps. Tyler August […]

Spc. Alexis Ruth, a healthcare specialist prepares to administer a vaccine, up close photo of the syringe

Everyone becomes eligible for COVID-19 vaccine next week

BY: - March 30, 2021

After weeks of slowly titrating out the COVID-19 vaccine to larger and larger groups of people, Wisconsin’s vaccine program will go wide open next week, as all state residents 16 and older become eligible for the shot starting Monday, April 5. Gov. Tony Evers announced the expanded eligibility for the vaccine Tuesday afternoon. “Now, it […]

State rolls out revised unemployment insurance application website

BY: - March 30, 2021

People applying for or collecting unemployment insurance (UI) will encounter a new look on the state’s website for UI claims starting Wednesday. The Department of Workforce Development (DWD) says that the website overhaul makes the site easier to use and easier to understand. It also is mobile-friendly, according to the agency. The changes allow people […]