Bulldozer spreads garbage at a landfill (photo courtesy of the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. CC BY-ND 2.0)

Another Walker appointee elevated to top U.S. EPA job under Trump

BY: - January 9, 2020

WASHINGTON — A former senior Wisconsin environmental official who served under Gov. Scott Walker has been elevated to a top job in the Trump administration.  Kurt Thiede, who was deputy secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources from 2015 to 2017, has taken the reins of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Great Lakes regional […]

water faucet

Water Quality Task Force releases final report on policy recommendations

BY: - January 9, 2020

A final report released by the state’s Water Quality Task Force was described as an “unprecedented, bipartisan effort for clean water in Wisconsin,” by Assembly Speaker Robin Vos. The report outlines a package of bills and provides a variety of recommendations for the state’s water policy. One recommendation is the creation of an Office of Water […]

Scrabble tiles spell "vote"

What’s going on with the voter purge?

BY: - January 9, 2020

A conservative group’s lawsuit demanding that more than 200,000 voters who may have changed address be purged from the voting rolls in Wisconsin has set off a race to state and federal courts by parties on both sides of the issue. The Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty (WILL), which brought the original lawsuit, the […]

Assembly Committee on Regulatory Licensing Reform

Occupational licenses: Consumer safeguard or job barrier?

BY: - January 9, 2020

Should a sign language interpreter have to pass a test and obtain a license in order to work? A massage therapist? A real estate agent? A barber or beautician? An architect? A wave of legislation has been spreading across the country relaxing state occupational licensing rules, and for the second legislative term in a row, […]

Trump pushes Iran sanctions, Senate to vote on war powers

BY: - January 8, 2020

In a live, televised address to the nation on Wednesday, President Donald Trump responded to missile attacks by Iran on U.S. military sites in Iraq by announcing tougher sanctions, vowing that Iran will never get nuclear weapons, and praising his administration’s decision to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal, claiming that U.S. military power is […]

The frac sand industry’s migration out of Wisconsin

BY: - January 8, 2020

Wisconsin’s frac sand industry appears to be migrating away from the state’s rural north, and towards more favorable territories as far south as Texas. Not necessarily because the Badger State’s resources are depleted, or because the sand is of a lower quality. Rather, the coveted “northern white” sands of Wisconsin and Minnesota are more expensive […]

President Trump signs the USMCA trade agreement with Mexico and Canada

Tammy Baldwin announces she’ll vote to pass ‘new NAFTA’

BY: - January 8, 2020

Parting company with her Congressional successor, Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wisconsin) Tuesday announced she plans to vote to ratify the new United States Mexico Canada Agreement (USMCA). “President Trump’s trade wars have hurt our Wisconsin economy and more than 1,900 dairy farms have gone out of business since he took office,” Baldwin said in a statement […]

Thousands of people gather outside of the Wisconsin state capitol building during the 2011 Wisconsin Budget Protests.

Our Wisconsin Revolution’s new director: We’ve got to create a new kind of politics

BY: - January 8, 2020

Our Wisconsin Revolution, the statewide group that grew out of Bernie Sanders’ 2016 presidential campaign, announced this week that it has hired its first executive director, Mike McCabe. The announcement comes as national attention is increasingly focused on Wisconsin, which is widely seen as a critical state in the 2020 presidential election. But McCabe is […]

Sen. Scott Fitzgerald at his year-end news conference 12/20/19 (Photo by Melanie Conklin)

Legislators, take your marks, get set …

BY: - January 7, 2020

In the corridors of the state Capitol, 2019 was a painful struggle given the new dynamic of split-party control that Wisconsin had not experienced for almost a decade. And before the Assembly and Senate convene in mid-January, there doesn’t seem to be a lot of hope on either side that great things will happen amid […]

Voces de la Frontera Executive Director Christine Neumann-Ortiz (Photo by Isiah Holmes)

Immigration activists weigh in on new federal operation

BY: - January 7, 2020

With a surge in federal law enforcement agents and funding expected for Milwaukee, immigration activists are concerned about whether the Department Of Justice (DOJ) Operation: Relentless Pursuit will also involve Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). This new initiative, which the government says will target violent crime in seven cities nationwide, was announced a day after […]

Downtown Baraboo

Not just a picture: Baraboo one year later

BY: - January 6, 2020

It was the pre-prom picture that went around the world.  It was supposed to be a lighthearted, celebratory snapshot. It turned into anything but that: A picture of teenage boys, the majority of them with their arms stuck out in the air, parroting a Nazi salute to the camera.  Many were grinning — smiles that […]

Nation watches as Wisconsin voter purge battle builds

BY: - January 3, 2020

The heated battle to win Wisconsin in 2020 did not take a break over the New Year’s holiday as a nationally watched court battle over voters continues to play out. On Monday, the six-member Wisconsin Elections Commission deadlocked 3-3 along partisan lines over whether or not to immediately purge more than 200,000 registered voters in […]