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Ron Johnson Ditches His Own Judicial Nominee After 2,323 Days PDF Print E-mail
Elections, Elected Officials, Political Parties
Written by Democratic Party of Wisconsin, Brandon Weathersby   
Wednesday, 18 May 2016 18:03

ron-johnsonMADISON - "What did Johnson have to say? Who knows. He didn’t even show up."

Ron Johnson Ditches His Own Judicial Nominee After Ignoring Court Vacancy For 2,323 Days By Jennifer Bendery
May 18, 2016

Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) just can’t bring himself to play well with others.

He’s spent more than six years — 2,323 days, to be precise — singlehandedly preventing a vacancy on a court that covers his state from being filled. It’s the longest circuit court vacancy in the country.

That’s why it was a big deal Wednesday when the Senate Judiciary Committee held a hearing for Wisconsin lawyer Donald Schott, who would fill that seat on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit. Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Schott’s other home-state senator, introduced him with rave reviews. A few committee members peppered him with questions, but signaled no problems with his qualifications.

What did Johnson have to say? Who knows. He didn’t even show up.

Typically, both of a nominee’s senators come to these hearings to make the best case possible for confirming the nominee. Schott was one of eight finalists for the seat suggested by the Wisconsin senators’ own commission. And Johnson previously joined Baldwin in turning in their “blue slips” for Schott — a procedural step that signals a senator is ready to advance a nominee in the committee.

A Johnson spokeswoman didn’t respond to a request for comment on why he skipped the hearing or whether he actually plans to push to confirm Schott, versus just turning in his blue slip for appearance’s sake.

At least one Wisconsin senator was eager to introduce a home-state nominee to the Judiciary Committee.

Johnson’s efforts to stall on filling the 7th Circuit seat fit into a broader GOP strategy of blocking nearly all of President Barack Obama’s judicial picks this year. That’s because Republican leaders would prefer to hold out until 2017, when Donald Trump might be in the White House (is this really happening?) and put forward lifetime judicial nominees more to their liking.

The problem is that courts with vacancies can get so swamped that people’s cases are delayed for years even as judges grapple with burnout. There are currently 87 federal court vacancies. Twenty-eight are considered emergencies.

Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), who chairs the Judiciary Committee, said last week that he expects the Senate to stop any confirmation of judges by the time August hits. That doesn’t bode well for the 7th Circuit, which is positioned to roll into year seven with this vacant seat.

 
Tom Perez to Keynote 2016 Democratic State Convention in Green Bay PDF Print E-mail
Elections, Elected Officials, Political Parties
Written by Democratic Party of Wisconsin   
Wednesday, 18 May 2016 17:35

Tom PerezJoined by State Chair Martha Laning, Senate Democratic Leader Jennifer Shilling, Assembly Democratic Leader Peter Barca, Congressman Ron Kind, Congresswoman Gwen Moore, Congressman Mark Pocan, U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin, and Russ Feingold


GREEN BAY - Friday and Saturday, June 3 & 4 respectively, labor and civil rights leader Tom Perez will give the keynote addresses at the 2016 Democratic State Convention. State Chair Martha Laning, Senate Democratic Leader Jennifer Shilling, Assembly Democratic Leader Peter Barca, Congressman Ron Kind, Congresswoman Gwen Moore, Congressman Mark Pocan, U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin, Russ Feingold, and a number of other Democratic leaders will also give remarks.

Members of the Media Attending

A credential is required for members of the media wishing to attend this event. Please click here to apply for a press credential.

All members of your party wishing to attend are required to submit a credential request.

Members of the media who have not submitted a request for credentials and have not been approved for a press credential will not be allowed into the event. Please note that press riser space will be limited.

 
Ron Johnson Confused About the Definitions of Support and Endorse PDF Print E-mail
Elections, Elected Officials, Political Parties
Written by Democratic Party of Wisconsin, Brandon Weathersby   
Wednesday, 18 May 2016 17:24

rjMADISON - While talking about his new pal, Donald Trump, the past few days, Senator Johnson has been confused over the definition of the words "support" vs "endorse." He seems to think that the two words have different meanings, but he’s sadly mistaken. Of course, Wisconsinites know that Sen. Johnson’s word soup is classic Washington Insider doublespeak (cc Sen. Kelly Ayotte). But just to make sure there's no room for error the next time he talks about endorsing...or...supporting The Donald, we took the liberty of sending him a dictionary to clear up any confusion he may have.

The dictionary should arrive at Johnson’s Washington office in the next few days, but here’s a preview:

We highlighted the definition of "endorse" for the senator...

And did the same thing for the word "support..."

We wrote Sen. Johnson a letter along with the dictionary. In case you can’t read it, here’s the text

Dear Senator Johnson,

We heard you on Mike Daly’s Show on Sunday talking about your endorsement...err...support for presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump. You sounded confused about the definitions of the words "support" and "endorse." Here’s a dictionary that should help clear up any confusion you may still have over the difference (hint: there is none). We’ve taken the liberty of highlighting the definitions and synonyms of support and endorse in the dictionary and put them below.

From American Heritage Dictionary

Endorse (p. 252): To express approval of or give support to

Support (p. 728): To aid the cause of by approving or favoring, synonym:               endorse

For future reference when you talk about “supporting” vs. “endorsing” Donald Trump, you should keep in mind that the words are synonyms. There is no difference.

Sincerely,
Democratic Party of Wisconsin

 
Why Did Sen. Johnson Vote Against a Bipartisan Bill on Zika? PDF Print E-mail
Elections, Elected Officials, Political Parties
Written by Democratic Party of Wisconsin, Brandon Weathersby   
Wednesday, 18 May 2016 09:04

ron-johnsonMADISON – Senator Johnson reminded voters again today that he is more interested in protecting the interests of his fellow Republicans in Washington than in protecting the people of Wisconsin. He joined 28 other extreme Republicans in voting against a bipartisan bill to combat a public health crisis. Wisconsinites deserve to know why.

Politico: Senate OKs $1.1 billion to fight Zika; House wants half that
By Jennifer Haberkorn
May 17, 2016

The Senate on Tuesday approved a bipartisan deal to partially fund the Obama administration’s request for emergency funding to fight Zika, but the bill is still too large for conservatives in the House and far from getting to the president’s desk.

The Senate advanced the $1.1 billion bill on a procedural vote and nixed two related measures — one to fully fund the administration’s $1.9 billion request and another smaller package that would have been paid for by cutting Obamacare.

Republicans in the House support about half of the Senate funding, which House Appropriations Chairman Hal Rogers called a “bridge too far at this point.”

Rogers has introduced a $622 million plan — which is expected to get a vote later this week — that was “very well received” in Tuesday’s House GOP conference meeting, he said.

The White House said the House measure could face a veto from President Barack Obama, a sure sign that House Democrats would oppose it. So do some Republicans. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), whose state is most threatened by Zika, called the House plan "playing with fire."

The divide between House and Senate Republicans is coming to a head after months of congressional squabbling over the administration’s funding request as the summer mosquito season approaches. The Zika virus, which has been directly linked to the severe birth defect microcephaly, is already spreading through mosquitoes in Puerto Rico. Local transmission of the virus is expected to take place in the continental United States — particularly the southern states — this summer.

The Obama administration has already moved about $600 million in unspent Ebola funds to the Zika fight. But HHS Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell, who has been lobbying individual lawmakers to approve the funding, argues that much more is needed to help control the mosquito population, to develop vaccines and to improve testing of the virus.

House Republicans are feeling pressure to back the White House request.

“[I]f we fail to deal with the issue and there are hardships that would be posed on society in this country, you wouldn’t be able to compute those costs,” said Rep. Steve Womack (R-Ark.). “It’s a dice role to get into an argument about Zika funding and running the risk in having something catastrophic happen and we own it.”

Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), who led negotiations on the Senate plan with Democratic Sen. Patty Murray, anticipated that a final package won’t come together for a “few weeks” and that the House could be open to additional funding. The House plan provides funding through September 2016 and the Senate plan goes through September 2017.

“The fact that they’re voting on $622 million to go between now and Sept. 30 indicates the House, like the Senate, is interested in finding a solution,” Blunt told reporters. The length of time and whether the plan is paid for or not “will be basis for whatever negotiations happens.”

Before the Senate bill passed on a 68-29 vote, Rubio blasted the House effort.

“Frankly, that’s just not going to cut it,” he said. “If we don’t spend more than that on the front end, I think we’re going to spend a lot more later … because the problem is not going to go away.”

House Republicans argue the Obama administration has not provided enough detail on what the money would be spent on, and when. They say that the administration wants a blank check and the ability to move unspent funds into other programs.

“You can’t just throw out a number and say, ‘Oh, I need $2 billion,’” said Rep. Ander Crenshaw (R-Fla.). “They said, ‘We need $5 billion for Ebola,’ which they got and there’s $2 billion left over. It’s better to tell us what you’re going to do with the money.”

The Senate package eliminated what Blunt said was at least one $85 million request to build two new buildings he said were unrelated to the Zika fight.

Obama administration officials say they have sent detailed proposals to Congress and that combatting the virus — which is new to the continental United States and has many unanswered questions — will require flexibility.

Democratic Sen. Brian Schatz, whose state of Hawaii could be particularly susceptible to the virus, is concerned that if the full funding request isn’t approved now, the White House will have to ask Congress to come back into session in the fall to approve more funding.

“This is the most basic test of governing. This isn’t a matter of political philosophy; this is a matter of competence,” he said. Republicans “have got to show that they can be trusted with the keys to the car and right now it’s not clear.”

Even if the House were to approve the Senate’s Zika funding amount, it is unclear whether the president would actually sign the legislation. The Senate attached the funding to a transportation and military funding bill; on Monday, the White House said staff would recommend a veto to the spending package for reasons unrelated to Zika.

Blunt indicated Tuesday that the Zika funding would likely be pulled into a separate bill or separate legislation.

 
Donald Trump Didn’t ‘Cross the Line’ for Sen. Johnson PDF Print E-mail
Elections, Elected Officials, Political Parties
Written by Democratic Party of Wisconsin, Brandon Weathersby   
Tuesday, 17 May 2016 09:08

ron-johnson-speaksMADISON - Yesterday on Mike Daly’s Show, Senator Johnson said that if any candidate running for office said “something that crosses a line” he would, “have to withdraw [his] support”.

Given that Ron Johnson enthusiastically supports Donald Trump, let’s take a look at all of Trump’s comments and campaign promises that clearly didn’t ‘cross a line for Ron Johnson:

Last Updated on Tuesday, 17 May 2016 09:14
 
Ribble Continues to Refuse to Back Trump, Others Support Him PDF Print E-mail
Elections, Elected Officials, Political Parties
Written by Democratic Party of Wisconsin, Brandon Weathersby   
Tuesday, 17 May 2016 08:54

reid_ribbleMADISON - Over the weekend, Congressman Reid Ribble doubled down on his refusal to support Donald Trump as the nominee of the Republican Party. According to WisPolitics, Ribble said “I’ve been clear that I can’t vote for him,” and he even went as far as saying he would support the Libertarian or Constitution party candidate in November.

While Congressman Ribble stands firm in his opposition to Trump, 8th District Republicans Mike Gallagher and Frank Lasee have stated that they will back Trump if he wins the nomination.  In separate appearances on WFRV TV, Gallager andLasee pledged their support of Trump as the Republican nominee.

donald-trump"Mike Gallagher and Frank Lasee need to explain to voters in Northeast Wisconsin why they are supporting Trump while their own Congressman has refused. By supporting Trump it is clear that Gallagher andLasee support someone with a history of racist and misogynistic rhetoric, someone with no foreign policy experience, someone who even suggested that women who get abortions should be put in jail,” said Martha Laning, chair of the Wisconsin Democratic Party. “Trump’s policies would be a disaster for Wisconsin women and families, and Gallagher and Lasee should know better.”

Background:  

Ribble still won't vote Trump, will look for another option this fall


“Many elected Republicans in Wisconsin are either starting to get behind Donald Trump for president or trying to get there by this fall's election.
Not Reid Ribble.

The outgoing congressman declared in December he wouldn't vote for Trump if the businessman became the GOP nominee and he's sticking to that pledge with the businessman on the verge of clinching the nomination.

Ribble, R-Sherwood, said he will look at the Libertarian and Constitution party nominees instead, adding he won't back Hillary Clinton if she secures the Dem nomination.

"I've been clear that I can't vote for him, and I can't vote for her," Ribble said in a brief interview.” [WisPolitics, 5/14/2016]

 
May 13 Update from DPW Chair, Martha Laning PDF Print E-mail
Elections, Elected Officials, Political Parties
Written by Democratic Party of Wisconsin, Martha Laning   
Friday, 13 May 2016 18:59

martha-laningMADISON - Welcome to the weekly installment of my chair update!

I am so proud of all the students graduating from college this weekend. However, this sadly reminds me of the negative impact Scott Walker and Republicans have had on the system. The last budget removed $250 million in state aid from the UW-System forcing campuses to pass or consider passing votes of “no confidence” in the Governor’s hand-picked Board of Regents.

Russ Feingold released a new ad highlighting the false attacks from Ron Johnson’s buddies the Koch Brothers. In addition, Paul Ryan jumped on board the Trump Train and Scott Walker failed yet again to pay off Wisconsin’s bills.

And don’t forget, State Convention is only a few weeks away!

GRADUATION WEEKEND

This weekend thousands of young adults will receive their degrees and head out to the real world. For too many students though, what is supposed to be a joyous day, will be overshadowed by looming student debt.

We have to thank the wonderful professors, who have stepped up to make sure our students graduate and are prepared for the real world. They have gone above and beyond, prioritizing the well-being of their students despite Gov. Walker passing a $250 million budget cut to public higher education and forcing schools to do more with less.

Every single branch of the UW-System is experiencing cuts between half a million dollars to as high as $53 million dollars. It will be harder for students to graduate on time as essential classes are being cut and professors are being fired or leaving the UW-System. The situation has gotten so bad that faculties have held votes of “No Confidence” at multiple locations, including UW-Eau Claire, UW-River Falls, UW-La Crosse, UW-Green Bay, and UW-Milwaukee. A vote of no confidence by the faculty shows they have no faith in the direction Scott Walker and his hand-picked Board of Regents. Faculty members know what campuses and students need to prosper, and it’s time Walker and Republican leaders allocated the proper resources to Wisconsin’s public higher education system.

Parents will proudly watch their kids achieve a huge milestone in their lives this weekend, but I am sure many will also be wondering how their kids will fare trying to pay off their school debt while also covering living expenses. Unfortunately, Gov. Walker and Republican leaders couldn’t be bothered to take up Democratic legislation that would allow students to refinance their debt the same way you can a mortgage. Senator Harsdorf refused to even take the bill up in her committee.

And what has the result been? Over one million Wisconsinites are still shoulder the burden of student loan debt.

With over $1 billion in student debt, Wisconsin ranks 3rd nationally for the highest debt per capita; and students with high loan payments often push aside major life milestones like buying a home, a car, or even starting a family due to crushing debt. Wisconsinites deserve much better.

Democratic legislators have requested public higher education committee hearings on the budget cuts, but Republicans refuse to hold them. They refuse to acknowledge the consequences their cuts are having on the UW-System, even though they are jeopardizing the economic benefit that Wisconsin residents receive from the UW-System. Regardless of party affiliation, we deserve legislators who won’t run away from our problems!

NEW RUSS AD

Yesterday, Russ’s campaign released a new ad, highlighting the false attacks Ron Johnson’s buddies, the Koch brothers, are running to smear Russ. The ads are so false that three TV stations decided to pull them off the air – the first time any political ad has been pulled for a false claim anywhere in the country this election cycle. Between supporting Donald Trump, refusing to do his job on SCOTUS, and allowing his special interest pals to run false attack ads, it is clear Ron Johnson needs to be replaced.  Lucky for us we have Russ! Wisconsinites expect elected officials to work for their best interests, which is exactly why we are going to elect Russ to the senate in November.

PAUL RYAN IS ALL ABOARD THE TRUMP TRAIN

When Paul Ryan was asked at the beginning of this week if he would Support Donald Trump’s nomination, he said “I hope to and I want to”. Yesterday, after having a private meeting with Trump, he praised the Republican’s racist, sexist, and xenophobic presumed presidential nominee. Instead of denouncing Trump’s hateful and divisive language, Paul Ryan is all aboard the Trump Train.

We shouldn’t be surprised that Ryan won’t denounce Trump and is even embracing his policies, as Ryan has his own extreme record that compliments the presumptive Republican Presidential nominee. This includes dismantling Social Security, believing Roe vs. Wade should be overturned entirely, voting for some of the 'most outrageous anti-immigrant and anti-Latino legislation”, and he does not believe in raising the minimum wage. With this sort of record, it becomes abundantly clear why Paul Ryan won't denounce Donald Trump dangerous ideas – he supports them.

To make things even more interesting, Paul Ryan says Trump is a “genuine” guy.  Remember Trump has said women should be punished for receiving an abortion, all Muslims should be banned from entering the country, and he would allow the United States to default on our debt, which would be an economic catastrophe.  Sounds like Donald Trump would be a “genuine” disaster as President!


WISCONSIN MISSES ANOTHER DEBT PAYMENT UNDER SCOTT WALKER

Scott Walker preaches fiscal responsibility, but for a second time in as many years he has been unable to pay Wisconsin’s bills - passing along millions in extra interest cost to taxpayers. In this particular instance, the Walker administration kicked a $101 million debt bill down the road, resulting in an extra $2.3 million in interest costs. That’s $2 million dollars wasted that we could spend on education to help our kids or $2 million for broadband expansion in rural areas of the state. But remember, this isn’t the first time Scott Walker and the Republicans have skipped a payment, as they kicked a $100 million debt payment down the road in 2015.

After six years of empty platitudes and broken promises it is clear the choices Republican leadership in our state have made have left Wisconsin far worse off than when Walker took office. Instead of investing in priorities that would grow Wisconsin’s economy – education, workforce development, and supporting local businesses, Walker and Republican politicians gave away millions in tax breaks to special interests and the wealthy. And what have the results been?  Wisconsin ranked 50th in entrepreneurship, 35th in Job Growth, and gave out 10,000 layoff notices last year.  Now, once again, Wisconsin has been unable to pay its debt bill.

With Trump at the top of the ticket and Wisconsin Republicans refusing to join Democrats in common sense solutions, it is clear Wisconsin needs strong new Democratic leadership in Madison to get our house in order, and build an economy that works for everyone, not just the billionaires.


STATE CONVENTION

We are so excited for our upcoming state convention on June 3rd and 4th in Green Bay. For this event to run as smoothly as possible we need your help, so please sign up for a volunteer shift here. This is going to be a great event that you are not going to want to miss. Sign up so you can see all the action click here!


Sincerely,
Martha Laning

 
Johnson Still Wants Trump's SCOTUS Nominee PDF Print E-mail
Elections, Elected Officials, Political Parties
Written by Democratic Party of Wisconsin, Brandon Weathersby   
Tuesday, 10 May 2016 08:12

merrick-garland-scotusMADISON - Senator Ron Johnson is finally meeting with Merrick Garland today (months after he first said he would), but he still stands firm in his opposition to Garlands nomination, believing that Donald Trump is the best person to nominate SCOTUS justices. Johnson has said time and time again that a vote on Merrick Garland is “not going to happen.” Instead, he wants voters to “move on” so that his pal Donald Trump can pick the next Supreme Court Justice.

ron_johnsonPublic pressure continues to mount on Johnson to consider the nomination. Poll after poll shows voters disagree with his obstructionism, and a recent WPR poll found that a clear majority of Wisconsinites want the Senate to consider the nomination. Yesterday, a Public Policy Polling survey found that, unlike Ron Johnson, most voters don’t trust Donald Trump to pick Supreme Court Justices.

“Ron Johnson’s meeting with Merrick Garland is just a ploy designed to distract from the fact that he refuses to do his job and actually consider Garland’s nomination. Poll after poll shows voters want the Senate to act, but Johnson is far more interested in the wishes of Donald Trump, than those of voters,” said Harry Hartfield, spokesman for the Democratic Party of Wisconsin.

 
Wisconsin Republicans are All Aboard the Trump Train PDF Print E-mail
Elections, Elected Officials, Political Parties
Written by Democratic Party of Wisconsin, Brandon Weathersby   
Saturday, 07 May 2016 16:15

donald-trumpWe have two outstanding Democratic candidates for President who will treat the office with the respect it deserves. Donald Trump is a dangerous candidate who doesn't deserve serious consideration for the highest office in the nation. Democrats are united and will hold Donald Trump accountable every day until November 8th.


MADISON - On Tuesday, Donald Trump successfully completed his hostile takeover of the Republican Party by winning the Indiana primary which forced out his two main rivals and all but secured the Republican presidential nomination. Donald Trump's dangerous, sexist, racist, and xenophobic rhetoric didn't stop Republican leaders in Wisconsin from eagerly jumping on the Trump train.

martha-laning"Throughout the entire primary season, Democrats have acted presidential, sharing ideas on how to make the economy work for everyone, make higher education affordable, raise wages for workers, increase access to quality and affordable healthcare, and invest in hard-working families through paid family leave," Democratic Party of Wisconsin Chair, Martha Laning, said on Friday. "Any responsible leader can see that Donald Trump is dangerous and lacks both the judgement and the temperament to be president. His nomination is a result of the Republicans elevating extreme voices and using divisive campaigns for years that sought to exploit unfounded fears for political gain. Republicans in Wisconsin should rip up their tickets to the Trump Train."

Immediately after it became clear that Trump would be their Party's nominee. Sen. Ron Johnson, Gov. Scott Walker, Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, Rep. Kathy Bernier and WisGOP 3rd Congressional District Chair all climbed aboard the Trump Train despite months of The Donald denigrating women, promoting misogyny, and exploiting cultural fears in the pursuit of getting elected. Their support is a clear indication of what the Republican Party has become, a party so concerned with grabbing power that they'll allow a bombastic billionaire to bully his way to the Oval Office.

Even Speaker Paul Ryan, the highest ranking elected leader in the Republican Party, can't bring himself to denounce dangerous Donald Trump's pursuit of the Presidency. Yesterday, Ryan announced that he wasn't ready to support Donald Trump as the Party's nominee, but noted that he hoped to support The Donald if he could unify the party. Speaker Ryan declined to mention any specific policy or platform change Trump would have to amend to garner his support, even as voters have heard outlandish and dangerous ideas from Trump like refusing to rule out using nuclear weapons on European territory or his proposal to take away a woman's right to make her own health choices and punish women who had abortions.

"As Republicans attempt to reconcile their failed strategy of running to the extreme, fervent base of their own Party during the primary, one thing is clear: Donald Trump is a dangerous candidate who should not be a serious consideration for the highest office in the nation. Our country deserves a President with the experience, intelligence and class to serve as leader of the free world. Republicans who board the Trump Train or fail to denounce Donald Trump and his candidacy in an outright manner are doing a disservice to Wisconsinites and their country. Thankfully we have two outstanding Democratic candidates for President who will continue to treat the office with the respect we all know the position deserves. Democrats will be united and hold Donald Trump accountable every day until November 8th." concluded Laning.

 
May 7th Update From DPW Chair Martha Laning PDF Print E-mail
Elections, Elected Officials, Political Parties
Written by Democratic Party of Wisconsin, Martha Laning   
Saturday, 07 May 2016 16:01

martha-laningMADISON - Welcome to the weekly installment of my chair update! I really enjoyed seeing people at the Eau Claire and Richland County spring flings this week.

The excitement about the election: Russ, our far superior Democratic Presidential candidates, the real possibility of picking up a congressional seat and talented, committed State Legislature candidates is great to see.  2016 is going to be our year and it is great to see the excitement and commitment to working for the ticket growing.

This week’s highlights

  • Donald Trump became the presumptive nominee for his party, much to the chagrin of the leaders in the party
  • Kicking off Older Americans Month
  • Tammy Baldwin’s tour in contrast to Ron Johnson’s Incompetence
  • Mothers need voters support too
  • President Obama’s thoughtful words to commemorate Teacher Appreciation week
  • Volunteer for the convention
  • Sign up for Message Monday or Grassroots Wednesday so you can help spread our progressive message

THE REPUBLICANS HAVE THEIR NOMINEE

On Tuesday, Donald Trump successfully completed his hostile takeover of the Republican Party by winning the Indiana primary, which forced out his two main rivals and all but secured the Republican Presidential nomination. Donald Trump's dangerous, sexist, racist, and xenophobic rhetoric didn't stop Republican leaders in Wisconsin from eagerly jumping on board the Trump train. 

I am truly disappointed and appalled by Sen. Ron Johnson, Gov. Scott Walker, Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, Rep. Kathy Bernier and the WisGOP 3rd Congressional District Chair who all gleefully hug Trump and his heinous views. Even Speaker Paul Ryan, the highest ranking elected leader in the Republican Party, can't bring himself to denounce dangerous Donald Trump's pursuit of the Presidency and said he hopes and wants to support Donald Trump.

Any responsible leader can see that Donald Trump is dangerous and lacks both the judgment and the temperament to be president. Anything short of denouncing Trump's candidacy is an endorsement of his racist, sexist, and xenophobic views and Republicans in Wisconsin should rip up their tickets for the Trump Train.

Trump's nomination is a reminder that for years, Republicans have elevated extreme voices and used divisive campaigns that sought to exploit unfounded fears for political gain. Democrats have been the adults in the room, sharing ideas to make higher education affordable, raise wages for workers, increase access to quality and affordable healthcare, and invest in hard-working families through paid family leave,

Thankfully, we have two outstanding Democratic candidates for President who will continue to treat the office with the respect we all know the position deserves. Democrats will be united and hold Donald Trump accountable every day until November 8th.

Check out this ad showing many Republican leaders in our country showing their true feelings about Donald Trump
OLDER AMERICANS MONTHS
In America, we have a simple promise: if you work hard, play by the rules, and pay your fair share you should be able to retire with dignity. Social Security and Medicare embody this promise, so in the Month of May, which is dedicated to Older Americans, we must remember how important these programs are to millions and reaffirm our commitment to defending them at all costs. 

Millionaires and billionaires like Ron Johnson and his new pal Donald Trump don't need these programs so they don't understand how indispensable they are. But right here in our own state, 30% of Wisconsinites receive all of their monthly income from Social Security benefits and millions more benefit from the guaranteed healthcare of Medicare. They are foundational to working-class and middle-class economic security. 

Let this month serve as a reminder of the need to protect Older Americans from Republican attempts to try and loot these programs to give more tax breaks to the wealthy. Democrats will continue to protect them at all costs just as we have from the very beginning and will fight to strengthen them so America can better live up to its promise long into the future. 

Click here to listen to the DPW's new ad about the threat Ron Johnson poses to these vital programs.

WHILE TAMMY BALDWIN CONTINUES TO DO HER JOB, RON JOHNSON REFUSES TO DO HIS

I saw Tammy zig-zagging across Wisconsin this week talking about a host of issues. She hosted a round table in La Crosse discussing the opioid epidemic facing our state and country. She also made her way to River Falls to discuss her In the Red legislation that works to alleviate the burden of student debt. In addition, she went to Menomonie, Racine, Kenosha, and Milwaukee. Along the way she joined with other Wisconsin lawmakers to call on the Justice Department to review Voter ID law in Wisconsin.

In other news…

Wisconsinites are confused why Ron Johnson announced his re-election campaign this week because of how apparent it is that he hates doing his job. Whether it is missing 60% of his Homeland Security Committee hearings or refusing to meet with President Obama’s Supreme Court nominee, Ron Johnson can’t be bothered to put the work in. We have to make sure Russ gets elected because we know he will represent our best interests and work tirelessly to make a better Wisconsin.

MOTHER'S DAY - LET’S COMMIT TO HELPING ALL MOTHERS

As we near Mother's Day, it is important to recognize and be grateful for the sacrifice, patience, and dedication of so many mothers all over the state. This is why Democrats work tirelessly to better the lives of single and working mothers around our country. 

We are fighting to accomplish equal pay for equal work so mothers and their families are not short-changed of thousands of dollars that otherwise could go towards groceries, school supplies or college tuition.  As a mother of two daughters, I am outraged by the thought of them being forced to raise families on less simply due to their gender. In addition, we need to recognize the importance of a mother having time to welcome a new born and pass paid family leave so mothers never have to face the decision between going to work, like elected office, and taking care of a new born baby  Having a child is a great gift that has challenges and our community can ensure all families have the time to welcome and adjust to their new addition so all thrive. Finally, we will continue to stand up for Planned Parenthood because we believe mothers deserve access to quality and affordable healthcare. 

This Mother's Day, as we appreciate our mothers' dedication to us, let's rededicate our efforts to fighting for them on these issues. 

Click here to listen to the newest Democratic weekly address on Mother's Day and Women's National Health Week. 

TEACHER APPRECIATION WEEK

This week we celebrated National Teacher Appreciation Day,  President Obama recognized his 5th grade teacher and as I read his post it made me think of so many great teachers that my children and I had. 

“The first time she called on me, I wished she hadn't. In fact, I wished I were just about anywhere else but at that desk, in that room of children staring at me. But over the course of that year, Ms. Hefty taught me that I had something to say -- not in spite of my differences, but because of them. She made every single student in that class feel special,” Obama wrote.
"She reinforced that essential value of empathy that my mother and my grandparents had taught me. That is something that I carry with me every day as President. This is the simple and undeniable power of a good teacher," the president continued.

Teachers touch all of our lives.  They make us see the possibilities ahead of us, they make us reach for our potential and sometimes they help us find potential we never knew we had.  Great teachers make our communities stronger because they help ALL the children.  They ensure that even when a child doesn’t have the support they need at home they get a chance to succeed.  That’s why it is so important that we as a society support them in their work.

Governor Walker’s disastrous budget cuts don’t ensure teachers get the support they need to do the important work of helping all our citizens reach their potential. Under Walker and Republicans in the legislature, over $800 million has been stripped away from our public schools, and another $250 million was slashed from our UW system. The cuts are much larger than that too since the legislature approved funding that should go to our public schools to go to private schools Our teachers are doing everything they can, but these cuts prevent them from doing what our kids deserve. They also are discouraging young people with the gift of teaching to go into the profession.

So, thank a teacher, and back that up with action. Contact your legislator and the governor and tell them that our teachers and students deserve to be a priority once again.

STATE CONVENTION

We are so excited for our upcoming state convention on June 3rd and 4th in Green Bay. For this event to run as smoothly as possible we need your help, so please sign up for a volunteer shift here. This is going to be a great event that you are not going to want to miss. Sign up so you can see all the action click here!

WHAT I AM HEARING FROM ALL OF YOU AS I TRAVEL ACROSS THE STATE

I have continued my travels across the state and I keep hearing over and over how people want to get involved! People want to write letters to the editors, call into radio stations, and be a local voice for the Democratic Party but don’t feel they have the messaging to properly have their voice heard. Luckily, we launched three different messaging services that I am getting great feed back on and I think would be helpful for all of you who want to get involved in really helping our candidate around the state. Below you can find links and descriptions for our three services, and I encourage you all to sign up if you haven’t already. Also, please feel free to forward these sign-up links to your strong Democratic allies!

  • Message Monday: we will send you what is driving the week and materials like talking points, social media posts, and sample letters to the editor. To sign up for the Message Monday Team click here.
  • Grassroots Response: a mid-week update on what we expect the rest of the week to look like and more materials for circulation. To sign up for the Grassroots Response Team click here.
  • Tweeters Team: consists of promoting our Party’s tweets and tweets you can put out yourself based on what content is driving the day. To sign up for the WisDems Tweeters Team click here.


Sincerely,
Martha Laning

 
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