Wisconsin State Assembly

Democrats call out ‘systemic racism’ by Assembly Republican leaders for punishing their free speech

BY: - June 10, 2021

Republicans in the Legislature generally shrug off accusations from Democrats that they are being callous to Wisconsinites by refusing to provide health care coverage or elitist by giving tax breaks to the wealthy while making it harder for low-income families to get food or child care.  But there’s one charge that generates a quick reaction: […]

Supermarket produce areas with tomatoes and cucumbers

Eliminating Evers’ mask order could cost Wisconsin $49 million in food assistance

BY: - January 28, 2021

The Wisconsin Senate rushed through a resolution authored by Sen. Steve Nass (R-Whitewater) to eliminate Gov. Tony Evers’ most recent public health order without any hearing — and without discovering it could potentially take $49 million in emergency food assistance for low-income Wisconsin residents and people who have lost their jobs in the pandemic. The […]

Rep. Shannon Zimmerman

Rep. Shannon Zimmerman omits Florida vacation rental business from ethics filings

BY: - January 21, 2021

State Rep. Shannon Zimmerman (R-River Falls) is an agent of a vacation rental business in Florida, yet failed to disclose that fact in his statements of economic interest (SEI).  Wisconsin government officials are required under state ethics laws to disclose all business interests and commercial real estate properties. The vacation rental company, Southern Latitude Retreat, […]

Wisconsin Legislature in session

LeMahieu vs. Vos on COVID-19 bill, and their relationship

BY: - January 11, 2021

Senate Majority Leader Devin LeMahieu plans to bring forward a new COVID-19 response bill today that is “thinner” than the 44-part bill advanced by Assembly Speaker Robin Vos that the Assembly passed and sent to the Senate for consideration. The Senate version has fewer than half that many provisions — around 18 to 20 — […]

Speaker Robin Vos gives a speech at the 2021-22 inauguration.

Senate Republicans rebuff Vos’ fast-tracked COVID bill, Assembly to vote despite threats

BY: - January 6, 2021

Thursday the Assembly is scheduled to meet to take up just one piece of legislation: the fast-tracked COVID-19 bill that Speaker Robin Vos introduced late Monday and was passed through committee on Tuesday. That plan hasn’t changed, despite potential threats from pro-Trump mobs that moved to state Capitols after rioters in Washington D.C. attempted to […]

The inauguration of the 105th session of the Wisconsin Assembly. (Photo via WisEye.)

Legislature’s opening day focused on pandemic politics around masks, access and power

BY: - January 5, 2021

AB 1 — the first bill introduced in the Legislature for the 105th session that began Monday — is a COVID-19 response bill that the Assembly plans to fast-track to a vote this week. That’s good news for all the people who complained about the Legislature not convening over the last nine months despite the […]

Mark Pocan and Robin Vos in a Stop the COVID Spread! advertisement.

Pocan chastises Assembly GOP mask-optional policy after filming pro-mask ad with Vos

BY: - December 30, 2020

Congressman Mark Pocan (D-Black Earth) blasted Assembly leadership for its decision not to require masks for the inauguration and first meeting of the body on Jan. 4.  An email from Assembly Speaker Pro-Tem Tyler August that laid out arrangements for the ceremony and meeting that encouraged — but did not mandate — masks, the Examiner […]

Rep. John Nygren (Photo by Isiah Holmes)

Rep. Nygren announces his abrupt departure from the state Assembly

BY: - December 1, 2020

State Rep. John Nygren (R-Marinette) announced in the EagleHerald — the daily newspaper in Marinette County — that he is resigning from the Wisconsin State Assembly effective Wednesday. Nygren made the announcement at the Assembly Republican caucus Tuesday morning, according to his hometown newspaper. In the Nov. 3 election, Nygren handily beat his Democratic opponent, […]

Assembly Speaker Robin Vos and Minority Leader Gordon Hintz (via WisEye 10/30/19)

Is Donald Trump running for Wisconsin State Assembly?

BY: - September 18, 2020

Every even-numbered year all 99 Wisconsin Assembly seats are up for grabs. Allegedly. In reality there are only a few truly competitive races, because the body is gerrymandered into what observers on both sides have labeled a permanent majority for Republicans.  In the last session the Assembly had 63 Republicans to 36 Democrats, despite Democrats […]

Assembling from a social distance on COVID-19 bill

BY: - April 15, 2020

The first roll call in the Wisconsin State Assembly’s COVID-19 extraordinary session took more than 20 minutes for each of the body’s 99 members to say one word as many struggled to stay connected or unmute audio via Skype, despite a dress rehearsal. By the final vote on the main bill, they had the time […]

Wisconsin Capitol and the Forward statue wearing a protective face mask during the COVID-19 pandemic. Photo credit: Nazan Gillie

Vos and Assembly GOP: Abortion providers are not an essential service

BY: - April 6, 2020

Speaker Robin Vos sent Gov. Tony Evers a letter on April 3 laying out his priorities for federal stimulus funding. Among other items, the letter asked for an exception to the governor’s stay-at-home order to permit people to gather for Easter and Passover services, and objected to the classification of abortion as an essential medical […]

COMMENTARY
"Women's History Month" by US Department of State is licensed under CC BY 2.0

On her shoulders: a pioneering woman in Wisconsin politics

BY: - January 7, 2020

One of my fondest memories from 2019 was attending a book launch for Rebecca Young, A Life of Civic Engagement and Progressive Electoral Politics, about a remarkably ambitious and successful Wisconsin politician. Becky Young ran for office twelve times between 1970 and 1996, including positions on the county board, school board and seven terms in […]