Commentary

Planet Earth exploding into heat and flames and sparks

From COVID to climate change: science must lead progress

BY: - April 27, 2020

As COVID-19 continues to upend lives across Wisconsin and the country, we need our elected leaders to engage in collective, coordinated action based on science – not fear, panic, ignorance or demagoguery. Unfortunately, as they have with their response to climate change, too many of our elected officials are not rising to the challenge of […]

President Trump delivers his third State of the Union to the nation the night before the U.S. Senate is set to vote in his impeachment trial. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Trump’s defamation suits pose a chilling prospect for the press

BY: - April 27, 2020

In the long and dubious history of nasty presidential politics, the anti-Trump attack ad that the pro-Democrat super PAC Priorities USA paid NBC affiliate WJFW-TV in Rhinelander, Wisconsin, to televise in America’s 134th largest market seemed tame enough. The 30-second spot uses rapid-fire audio snippets of Trump dismissing the seriousness of the nascent but fast-growing […]

U.S. President Donald Trump stands in the colonnade as he is introduced to speak to March for Life participants and pro-life leaders in the Rose Garden at the White House on January 19, 2018 in Washington, DC. | Mark Wilson/Getty Images

What is the Republican position on the pandemic? No, really.

BY: - April 24, 2020

Here are a couple of things you should know about the Reopen Wisconsin rally today: It’s too crazy for Sen. Ron Johnson — the guy who suggested we weigh the relative costs of merely wiping out 1% to 3% of the U.S. population (more than have died in all the wars in U.S. history) against […]

Banner at Milwaukee climate march 2019 (Photo | Isiah Holmes)

An Earth Day assessment of Wisconsin’s environmental progress

BY: - April 22, 2020

This Earth Day is a time to reflect on how Wisconsin has been handling its obligations to the environment and its duty to combat climate change. During Scott Walker’s administration, Wisconsin did not do its part — to say the least. My organization, the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign, released a report on Monday entitled “The Filthy […]

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - APRIL 02: A sign reading "Heroes work here" is shown outside MountainView Hospital during the continuing spread of the coronavirus across the United States (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

Don’t force workers to risk their lives by prematurely lifting Safer at Home

BY: - April 21, 2020

This past weekend we saw protesters defy health guidelines by gathering to demand an end to Governor Evers’ Safer at Home order. Though dangerously ill-advised, both the protest itself and policies it called for are predictable reactions to the ongoing shutdown. We all want life to get back to normal. We all want to get […]

A resident waits in line to vote at a polling place in Milwaukee for the April 7, 2020, primary election. Residents waited sometimes more than two hours to vote at this site, one of the few polling places open in the city after most were consolidated due to a shortage of poll workers fearful of contracting COVID-19. Photo by Scott Olson | Getty Images

The bigger story of Wisconsin’s pandemic election

BY: - April 21, 2020

There is a certain satisfaction — on the order of that joyful dance that Snoopy of Peanuts fame has gifted us — when a bully is thwarted.  One contemporary example of bullying is when an outnumbered group games the system to impose its will on the more numerous simply to maintain power. In political parlance, […]

A yard sign for Supreme Court candidate Judge Jill Karofsky in Maple Bluff (photo by Ruth Conniff).

Jill Karofsky’s victory is a big, surprising win for democracy 

BY: - April 14, 2020

It was over so soon, Jill Karofsky’s supporters were reluctant to believe it. Even after the Associated Press announced that Karofsky had won, beating conservative Supreme Court Justice Daniel Kelly, a Scott Walker appointee, to win a 10-year term on the Wisconsin Supreme Court, on social media Karofsky supporters were warning each other “We’ll know […]

A poll worker sits outside of Washington High School wearing a protective mask. (Photo by Isiah Holmes)

Voter suppression in Wisconsin could go nationwide in 2020

BY: - April 9, 2020

Forcing Wisconsinites to go to the polls during a pandemic on Tuesday, April 7, was part of a nationwide voter-suppression strategy that could help re-elect Donald Trump. Trump knows this. That’s why he tweeted on Wednesday, April 8:  https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1247861952736526336 What doesn’t work out well for Republicans is having free and fair elections, where everyone gets […]

A sign guides voters on Election Day at 514 Studios on November 6, 2018 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images)

Weekend of squabbling but no progress on Wisconsin’s election

BY: - April 6, 2020

Fifteen states have changed their election dates to avoid large gatherings of people at the polls during the coronavirus pandemic. Wisconsin is not one of them. In fact, ours is the only state that is rolling ahead with in-person voting this month. As we all watch the slow-motion car wreck that is the April 7 […]

President Trump Signs the Families First Coronavirus Response Act President Donald J. Trump is joined by Vice President Mike Pence and Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin as he displays his signature on H.R. 6201, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, Wednesday, March 18, 2020, in the Oval Office of the White House. (Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)

Coronavirus endangers our democracy

BY: - April 5, 2020

There is now stirring another virulent illness that can, if we don’t take effective countermeasures, also course through our already plagued nation. It, too, has deadly potential — for our democracy. It seems that the overtly partisan are putting up antibodies against accountability and doing it by essentially claiming – you guessed it – rank partisanship […]

U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos speaking at the 2018 Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in National Harbor, Maryland

Why is the Milwaukee county executive race so important to Betsy DeVos? 

BY: - April 3, 2020

Betsy DeVos, President Trump’s Secretary of Education, has long funded politicians who support voucher and charter-school schemes through her group, the American Federation for Children. The same American Federation for Children has funded school privatization efforts all over the country. Betsy DeVos is partly responsible for one of the biggest school reform disasters in the […]

Girl in a medical mask on the street during the coronavirus epidemic in Russia by Drug Addiction Clinic Vita

Free COVID-19 treatment is a critical missing link

BY: - April 1, 2020

The coronavirus pandemic confronts us with a cascading medical emergency that would challenge the greatest leaders. Fatefully, at a moment when hundreds of thousands of lives hang in the balance, the Trump Administration has made the threat exponentially worse. The administration’s catastrophic failures include a delay of at least a month in ramping up testing, […]