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The Ho-Chunk Code Talkers: Honoring Native American History PDF Print E-mail
Written by Jeff Smith, State Senator District 31   
Wednesday, 04 December 2019 09:56

wwii-code-talkersNative American Heritage Month is an important time to remind ourselves of our country’s past, the role of the World War II Ho-Chunk Code Talkers, and honor Native Americans’ contributions to our country.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 04 December 2019 10:37
Democratic Radio: Democrats Call for Action to Address Homelessness PDF Print E-mail
Written by Wisconsin Democrats   
Friday, 29 November 2019 15:25

homelessBipartisan legislation would fund homeless shelters all across Wisconsin.

MADISON, WI – Senator Jon Erpenbach (D – West Point) offered the Democratic weekly radio to discuss legislation to address homelessness.

The audio file of this week’s address can be found here.

A written transcript of the address is below:

“Hi, this is State Senator Jon Erpenbach.

“As the temperatures continues to drop here in Wisconsin, we are facing the fact that, due to political games, Republicans have pumped the brakes on many ideas and proposals that the majority of Wisconsinites support. Including proposals that would help Wisconsinites who are homeless.

jon-erpenbach“That’s why my Democratic colleagues tried to pass bipartisan legislation to fund homeless shelters all across Wisconsin. This legislation passed unanimously in both Senate and Assembly committees and before the full State Assembly. Despite the bipartisan efforts, Senate Republicans said no and have adjourned until January 2020.

“The funding was already approved in the budget, and both Governor Tony Evers and the Democrats are calling upon Republicans on the Joint Committee on Finance to meet and release these funds, so that we can get to work to help those that need it most.

“Homelessness is an issue that persists in communities all across our state. While we sit down with our families and loved ones to give thanks, it is important to remember that we do not forget those who do have no place to call home. I hope that my Republican colleagues will join us in remembering what season it is and what it is all about – it’s all about giving back.

What Are You Thankful For? PDF Print E-mail
Written by Jeff Smith, State Senator District 31   
Wednesday, 27 November 2019 09:43

uwec-teacherworkshopSen. Smith reflects on the amazing conversations he had and the lessons he learned during his first year representing the 31st Senate District.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 27 November 2019 10:15
“Green New Deal in Sconnie” Battleground Wisconsin Podcast PDF Print E-mail
Written by Citizen Action of Wisconsin, Matt Brusky   
Friday, 22 November 2019 10:21

countycity-taskforceMILWAUKEE - After an impeachment discussion and analysis of the new MU law Poll, we are joined by Milwaukee County Supervisor Supreme Moore-Omokunde to discuss Milwaukee’s new joint to address climate change and economic equity. The task force starts the process of developing a concrete plan to use the leverage of local government to restructure the local fossil fuel-based economy and reorganize it to dramatically reduce the shocking racial inequality that plagues Milwaukee.

Listen Now – Episode #418
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Democratic Radio: Preserving Wisconsin’s Hunting Heritage PDF Print E-mail
Written by Wisconsin Democrats   
Friday, 15 November 2019 10:59

deer-huntingMADISON, WI – Senator Jeff Smith (D – Brunswick) offered the Democratic weekly radio address on Chronic Wasting Disease.

The audio file of this week’s address can be found here.

A written transcript of the address is below:

jeff-smith“Hello, I’m State Senator Jeff Smith with this week’s weekly radio address.

“Next Saturday, November 23rd, hunters will head out for the opening of gun hunting season. Deer hunting is more than just a season in Wisconsin – it’s vital to our tourism industry, rural economy and our state’s heritage. You can do your part to preserve Wisconsin’s hunting tradition by testing your deer to stop the spread of Chronic Wasting Disease.

“CWD is always fatal. With the help of hunters, we can stop the spread of CWD. Hunters must test their deer. You can do this for free at one of the DNR’s easily accessible kiosks. This helps scientists understand infection rates and where the disease has spread. Hunters must also properly dispose of deer carcasses at DNR-designated dumpsters to avoid the risk of CWD spreading further.

“After eight years of Republican inaction, Democrats are prioritizing CWD eradication. I proudly introduced legislation with my Democratic colleagues to invest in CWD research and fund CWD kiosks and carcass disposal sites.

“The future of Wisconsin’s hunting-related tourism, public health and rural economy depends on the action we take today. Don’t fear learning if your deer was infected. Fear the future loss of our hunting heritage altogether.”

Group Applauds Congresswoman's Help to Domestic Violence Survivors PDF Print E-mail
Written by End Domestic Abuse WI, Jenna Gormal   
Friday, 15 November 2019 10:41

domestic-violenceEnd Domestic Abuse Wisconsin Applauds Congresswoman Gwen Moore for Introduction of Bill to Reauthorize Family Violence Prevention and Services Act.

Madison – End Domestic Abuse Wisconsin applauds U.S. Representative Gwen Moore for her historical leadership on this important legislation to reauthorize the Family Violence Prevention Services Act (FVPSA).

gwen-moore“Representative Moore recognizes that FVPSA is crucial in supporting life saving services for survivors of domestic violence and their families,” said Patti Seger, the executive director at End Domestic Abuse Wisconsin. “Introduction of H.R. 5041 is evidence of her ongoing commitment to ensuring that all survivors have access to the vital services and resources that they need."

FVPSA supports direct services to survivors and their families, including under-served populations, American Indian and Alaska Native communities, and territories. The local domestic violence programs in Wisconsin that receive FVPSA funding are able to provide critical shelter, counseling, and legal advocacy, among many other services and programs, to victims seeking a path to safety.

We know that a world without violence is possible, but to get there, we need to address the underlying societal factors that cause violence, or we will never end it," added Seger. "H.R. 5041 also meaningfully invests in prevention by enabling community-based programs to conduct effective prevention efforts, particularly those serving culturally-specific or traditionally under-served communities. This legislation is a fundamental step forward in our work to end violence for all."


End Domestic Abuse Wisconsin: The Wisconsin Coalition Against Domestic Violence is the leading voice for victims of domestic abuse in Wisconsin. At End Domestic Abuse Wisconsin, we educate shelter and program volunteers and advocates, law enforcement, legislators, and community members to provide safety and support to survivors. We strive to shift Wisconsin from the attitudes and beliefs that cause domestic violence to values of mutual respect and equality, and we partner with communities in the effort to prevent and end domestic abuse. We encourage reporters to include the National Domestic Violence Hotline number [1−800−799−SAFE(7233)] in their stories for victims who need help. A list of local Wisconsin domestic violence victim service providers can be found at

Last Updated on Saturday, 16 November 2019 10:58
Democratic Radio: ACA Open Enrollment Has Begun PDF Print E-mail
Written by Assembly Democrats   
Friday, 08 November 2019 15:05

affordable-care-actMADISON - This week Rep. Mark Spreitzer (D-Beloit) talks about open enrollment for the Affordable Care Act.

Audio File of Radio Address

mark-spreitzerHello, I’m State Representative Mark Spreitzer with this week’s Democratic Radio Address.

I’m here to remind you that open enrollment for the Affordable Care Act is available to you through December 15th, 2019.

Getting covered is important for every Wisconsinite because it means better access to preventative care and protection in the event of a serious medical need.

Stay healthy with free preventative care, like flu shots, cancer screenings, and tests for high blood pressure.

Across Wisconsin, consumers have more choices for health insurance plans to purchase.

In 2020, 61 of 72 counties have three or more insurance carriers for consumers to choose from in the individual market.

Here’s what you need to do in order to apply. First, visit Second, make sure you have correct and up-to-date information on hand, such as your social security number, current place of residence, employment information, household income, and information related to other income and benefits.

Free assistance is available to all Wisconsinites who need help selecting a health insurance plan.

Go online now to explore your health insurance options before open enrollment ends on December 15th. Get covered by visiting today.

Thank you.

Sen. Larson: In Rejecting Pfaff the Message was clear, Dissent Won’t be Allowed in Wisconsin PDF Print E-mail
Written by Wisconsin Senate Democrats   
Thursday, 07 November 2019 13:38

dairy-cow-eating“While everyone in Wisconsin can deal with the smell of dairy manure, the crappy treatment of Pfaff and farmers by the GOP is a bad smell that will linger.” says Milwaukee legislator.

MILWAUKEE, WI –Senator Chris Larson released the following statement regarding Republicans refusing to confirm Secretary Designee Brad Pfaff.

“Brad Pfaff was raised on a farm here in Wisconsin, is eminently qualified for this job, and deserved better than this from legislative Republicans. The message sent by Senate Republicans is chilling: dissent won’t be allowed.

chris_larson“Brad Pfaff’s great sin was speaking the uncomfortable truth to Republicans in power that Wisconsin’s farmers are committing suicide at a greater rate than the general population. And for that, Senate Republicans fired him. Let’s be clear, our dairy farmers are in crisis because of the Republican policies that favor giant farms at the expense of our family operated farms. Brad acknowledged that.

“Rather than address the financial devastation of President Trump’s trade policies and work on stopping the heartbreaking loss of Wisconsin farms, Wisconsin’s Senate Republicans rejected a widely supported and respected Department of Agriculture Trade and Consumer Protection Secretary Designee in Brad Pfaff. Rejecting his appointment is beyond disappointing at a time our small farmers need guidance and after this confirmation vote was held up for nine months after passing unanimously out of the Senate Agriculture Committee. And this simply because he spoke up regarding the GOPs lack of action on helping farmers who face mental health issues. This was petty partisanship at its worst and a bleak day in the Senate.

“While everyone in Wisconsin can deal with the smell of dairy manure, the crappy treatment of Pfaff and farmers by the GOP is a bad smell that will linger.”

Republicans Put Politics before Farmers - Again PDF Print E-mail
Written by Joint Finance Committee Democrats   
Thursday, 07 November 2019 10:59

door-county-peopleRepublican inaction on Joint Committee on Finance and rejection of Secretary-Designee Brad Pfaff a blow to farmers.

MADISON – While Wisconsin is in the midst of a dairy crisis, Republicans have, once again, put politics ahead of Wisconsin farmers, and rejected the nomination of an overwhelmingly qualified candidate to lead the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP). For the first time in modern Wisconsin history, Republicans have rejected a Secretary, purely for political reasons.

jon-erpenbach“Due to Republican inaction, farmers across Wisconsin were left waiting as the Joint Committee on Finance (JFC) sat on funds to assist farmer mental health for months,” said Senator Erpenbach. “Our Agriculture Secretary - whose job it is to defend and advocate for farmers- had the courage to stand up and fight for farmers and against suicide. Unfortunately, that courage wasn’t replicated on the Senate floor today with no explanations of switched votes that cost our farmers the best qualified candidate for the job.”

Agriculture communities are near and dear to Secretary-Designee Brad Pfaff, and that is what Wisconsin should expect from someone in that role. Until today, Republicans had come out in support of his leadership, experience, and vision for our farming communities. Every Republican on the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Revenue, and Financial Institutions, had already voted in favor of Secretary-Designee Pfaff in February, including Senators Marklein, Petrowski, Testin, Jacque, and Bernier.

More importantly, organizations across the state have urged the legislature to support his confirmation, including the Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association, Wisconsin Corn Growers Association, and the Wisconsin Agri-Business Association, among others.

“When the United States Secretary of Agriculture comes to our state and tells our farmers to go big or go home, and the Republicans serving in our State Senate continually cause uncertainty for our agriculture communities, from leaving mental health unfunded to rejecting a highly qualified secretary because he stood up for farmers, we have to ask what Republicans stand for. After today, it is hard for anyone to say that Republicans stand for farmers.”

Testin Abandons Wisconsin Farmers Say WisDems PDF Print E-mail
Written by Democratic Party of Wisconsin, Katie Iliff   
Thursday, 07 November 2019 10:41

tractor-flagDespite pleas from farm families, Republicans rejects DATCP Secretary

MADISON - Amid the ongoing dairy crisis caused by President Trump’s unfair trade war, local family farms were dealt another blow as Senate Republicans voted to reject Governor Tony Evers’ appointment of Brad Pfaff as Secretary of the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP). Their opposition comes at a time when Wisconsin farm bankruptcies and farmer suicide rates are on the rise.

“It is unconscionable that Republicans would stoop so low and reject Secretary-designee Pfaff who has been nothing but a credible and knowledgeable advocate for local family farms,” said SSDC Executive Director Katie Iliff. “To add insult to injury, Republicans like Senator Patrick Testin, that have already voted in support of Pfaff, turned their back on our rural communities and jeopardized our dairy farmers. The residents of central Wisconsin deserve better than Patrick Testin who is clearly more interested in playing petty political games.”

As members on the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Revenue and Financial Institutions that represent predominantly rural areas Sen. Howard Marklein (R-Spring Green), Sen. Petrowksi (R-Marathon), Sen. Testin (R-Stevens Point), Sen. Jacque (R-DePere), Sen. Bernier (R-Chippewa Falls) all previously voted in support of Secretary-designee Pfaff. Their flip-flop is the latest example of Republican obstruction that further escalates the dairy crisis in Wisconsin.

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