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Tag: Tony Evers

Governor Evers maintains light schedule while destroying lives

Here is my full column that ran in the Washington County Daily News earlier this week:

Actions have consequences, or so goes the adage. For some, however, they can make devastating decisions that impact millions of people without ever feeling the slightest sting from their decisions. Such is the case with Governor Evers and so many other government officials and bureaucrats.

 

Empower Wisconsin obtained Governor Evers’ official schedule through an open records request, and it is appalling. Evers’ schedule shows that the man, lifelong government apparatchik that he is, will never be accused of being a workaholic. His calendar shows that most weeks the governor is averaging a languid schedule of something between 30 and 36 hours of work. “Work” time includes time being transited to and fro in a chauffeured car or on the state plane provided by state taxpayers.

 

A normal workday for Governor Evers has been quite leisurely. He wakes from his nightly slumber in the cavernous and luxurious mansion provided to him by taxpayers overlooking Lake Mendota in the tony community of Poplar Bluff. He typically begins work in the mid-morning with perhaps a phone call or perhaps a video conference in the Executive Mansion. Usually after lunch, he will be chauffeured the 3.4 miles to his office in the state Capital building. Almost without exception, he is back at the mansion by 5 p.m. in time to catch reruns of “The Carol Burnett Show” on Decades TV.

 

It’s good to be the guv.

 

More infuriating than Evers’ semi-retired schedule is the specific schedule he kept during those whirlwind days earlier during the pandemic. In those early days when we were seeing the spread of COVID and getting false projections that it could kill millions within weeks, Governor Evers maintained his normal workload.

 

As Empower Wisconsin highlights, on March 13, 2020, Evers ordered the closing of all K-12 government and private schools. This marked the beginning of educational and psychological damage to our kids that will last for decades and caused untold upheaval in families throughout Wisconsin. On that day Evers started his workday at 9:30, made it to his office at 2 p.m., and was back in the mansion by 5 p.m.

 

On March 23, 2020, Governor Evers announced that he was going to order all “non-essential” business to close the following day. This single authoritarian act forced millions of Wisconsinites out of work, pushed many Wisconsin small businesses into bankruptcy, and brutalized families who lost their source of income with a stroke of Evers’ pen.

 

That day Evers put in a hard day of work — for him. He got up early and began working at 8:30 a.m. He made it to the office at 1:15 p.m. and was still back at the mansion by 5 p.m. He burned the midnight oil with a work call at 6 p.m. before ending his workday.

 

The point of this is not to ridicule our governor for his pathetic work ethic and disinterest in actually doing his job. The point is to highlight how easy the governor has had it while his actions have destroyed livelihoods, crippled kids’ futures, and forced families into dependency.

 

Throughout the pandemic, Governor Evers was never touched by the consequences of his decisions. He never went a single day without a paycheck or generous benefits. He never had to cut back on groceries, turn down the heat in winter, or skip paying a few bills to get by.

 

Governor Evers never felt the pain of a small-business owner who sat at her desk and made the hard decisions to drain her family’s savings to keep the business afloat for another couple of months in the hope that they might be able to make it. Evers never sat across the table from good people and had to take away their livelihoods because there was no more money. The governor was blissfully eating ice cream in his free mansion when single moms went home and had to explain to their children that they needed to save money because she had lost her job.

 

Governor Evers never had to hastily call his parents to watch the kids because schools and child care centers were suddenly closed. He never had to watch his kid, who struggled with school, sink into failure and depression because virtual learning was not working for him. Evers never had to go to work during the pandemic as so many “essential” people did, and then come home and work another four or five hours to help his kids navigate recorded lessons and homework.

 

While Wisconsinites were struggling with Evers’ idiotic and tyrannical edicts during the pandemic, the governor kept his lackadaisical schedule, ate his ice cream, played pickleball, and led his best life at taxpayers’ expense. It is offensive.

 

It is equally offensive that the governor is continuing to dole out our tax dollars in dribs and drabs as “relief” and expects people to be thankful. He behaves like an abusive husband who hands his wife a bandage after beating the snot out of her and expects gratitude. His actions deserve contempt, not appreciation.

 

The pandemic taught us a lot of things about the threadbare parts of our social fabric and the yawning divide between government and the people it is supposed to serve. More than ever, we need to elect people who do not come from government but seek to bring it to heel. We must never forget the havoc wreaked by Governor Evers.

Governor Evers maintains light schedule while destroying lives

My column for the Washington County Daily News is online and in print. Here’s a taste:

The point of this is not to ridicule our governor for his pathetic work ethic and disinterest in actually doing his job. The point is to highlight how easy the governor has had it while his actions have destroyed livelihoods, crippled kids’ futures, and forced families into dependency.

 

Throughout the pandemic, Governor Evers was never touched by the consequences of his decisions. He never went a single day without a paycheck or generous benefits. He never had to cut back on groceries, turn down the heat in winter, or skip paying a few bills to get by.

 

Governor Evers never felt the pain of a small-business owner who sat at her desk and made the hard decisions to drain her family’s savings to keep the business afloat for another couple of months in the hope that they might be able to make it. Evers never sat across the table from good people and had to take away their livelihoods because there was no more money. The governor was blissfully eating ice cream in his free mansion when single moms went home and had to explain to their children that they needed to save money because she had lost her job.

 

Governor Evers never had to hastily call his parents to watch the kids because schools and child care centers were suddenly closed. He never had to watch his kid, who struggled with school, sink into failure and depression because virtual learning was not working for him. Evers never had to go to work during the pandemic as so many “essential” people did, and then come home and work another four or five hours to help his kids navigate recorded lessons and homework.

 

While Wisconsinites were struggling with Evers’ idiotic and tyrannical edicts during the pandemic, the governor kept his lackadaisical schedule, ate his ice cream, played pickleball, and led his best life at taxpayers’ expense. It is offensive.

 

It is equally offensive that the governor is continuing to dole out our tax dollars in dribs and drabs as “relief” and expects people to be thankful. He behaves like an abusive husband who hands his wife a bandage after beating the snot out of her and expects gratitude. His actions deserve contempt, not appreciation.

Evers’ Semi-Retired Work Ethic

If you wonder why it was so easy for government officials to close down your business or force people to stay home or create mandates that put people out of work… this is why. Throughout the pandemic when people were out of work, businesses were going under, and paychecks were squeezed, our governor was putting in 30-hour weeks and getting home to his taxpayer-funded mansion in time for Wheel every day. All the while, he never missed a paycheck; never had to sit across the table from a valued employee and tell them that they didn’t have a job anymore; never had to tell his wife that they needed to cut household expenses because his hours were cut; none of it. Evers, like all of the other politicians who put millions of people out of work, continued on completely immune from the negative effects of their decisions. Other than wearing a mask and finding his favorite restaurant closed, Evers felt no impact from his decisions.

Empower Wisconsin compared the governor’s calendars for the first week in February in the years 2019, 2020, and 2021. This is historically a busy week for a governor. The Legislature was in session, and Evers was preparing a budget in two of the years. He was also dealing with a pandemic and related problems. But the governor kept a relatively light schedule. He averaged just under 36 hours of total official government work, according to his calendars.

 

For the week around February 15 in 2019, ’20 and ’21, Evers averaged just 33 1/2 hours per week. And for the last week of February, he worked on average just over 20 hours.

 

On Wednesday Feb. 27, 2019, Evers put in just over six hours of official business, according to his calendar. That included a 45-minute breakfast with Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes and a half hour of drive time back and forth between the Executive Mansion and the Capitol. He got home at 2:45 p.m. The rest of the day is redacted.

 

The average Wisconsin worker logged nearly 42 hours per week last year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The average worker was paid a lot less than Tony Evers.

 

Over the last year-plus, Evers has been spending a lot more time on the road — or in the air, using the state plane. Much of that travel has to do with the billions of dollars in federal COVID aid the Democrat has been able to use as a kind of unregulated campaign slush fund. He’s handed out a lot of big checks, covered by the taxpayers of the United States of America. Despite his travels, Evers is generally back at the mansion in time to watch the “Wheel of Fortune.”

 

It’s not all work and no play. A few days before Christmas last year, Evers jumped on the state plane for a tour of the Potawatomi Community Center and a pickleball match. It’s well known Evers is a big pickleball fan. His official day ended at 2:35 p.m.

 

Evers took the rest of the week (through the day after Christmas) off. There was one item listed on his Dec. 27 calendar: A phone call with President Biden, who also isn’t known for burning the midnight oil in office. His calendars show no activity on Tuesday, Dec. 28, just a quick COVID-19 Response check-in call the next day, and then very little on his schedule until Jan. 3. The governor apparently had settled his brain for a long winter’s nap.

The Evers’ Crime Wave

The MacIver Institute has a very long, but very good, story about the Evers crime wave. It’s easy to say that Evers’ has encouraged or allowed crime to rise. Sometimes we forget that it isn’t just about attitude. It is about policies. Evers has enacted specific policies that have encouraged the rise in crime. It is an intentional policy choice and one in which Evers accepts the increase in crime and pain of victims as the acceptable price of his ideological tenet that criminals are victims of the system instead of perpetrators of mayhem.

Tony Evers has been a leader in the movement toward leniency on crime, and decarceration.  His success in advancing these policies as governor has been accompanied by the largest rise in violent crime in more than a generation. And like his colleagues on the left, he isn’t backing away from his policies, he’s just pointing the finger of blame away from the perpetrators.

 

Here is a recap of the Evers Felons Before Families initiatives we’ve covered:

  1. Releasing half the prison population (he’s already nearly 1/3 of the way to his goal)

  2. Lying about how many violent criminals are in prisons (it’s 70%, not 20%)

  3. Turning a blind eye when prisoners in the community refuse to comply with the terms of their supervision

  4. Refusal to remove DAs for low and no bail policies that kill

  5. Appointing a parole commissioner who would swiftly boost the number of criminals given a “second chance” and then pretending he went rogue and asking for his resignation

  6. Lavishing sympathy on accused rapist Jacob Blake who resisted arrest while armed

  7. Chastising victims’ families – telling them to “take a breath” – for their anguished demands for justice

  8. Vetoing a legislative package of Tougher on Crime bills

  9. A complete overhaul of the criminal justice code to dump Truth in Sentencing, reduce sentences, and increase early releases.

  10. Replacing words like ‘prisoner’ and ‘sex offender’ for gentler terms like ‘person in our care’ and ‘client’ that harm criminal self-esteem

 

Evers and Kaul Sue Over Wisconsin’s Abortion Law

Interesting.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Wisconsin’s Democratic attorney general filed a lawsuit Tuesday challenging the state’s 173-year-old abortion ban, arguing that statutes passed in the 1980s supersede the ban and it’s so old no one can say it passed with the consent of modern generations.

To the layman (me), this seems like a legitimate question. If the state has two laws about the same thing, which one governs? I don’t think that the most recent one necessarily wins. In this case, the older law bans almost all abortions. The newer laws in which the legislature implemented regulations on abortions under the framework that the old law was invalid, but not repealed. Common sense says to me that you overlay the two sets of laws and that is the law. So, in effect, the newly valid older law essentially invalidates the new laws.

But… Rick Esenberg, esq., opined on the Jay Weber Show that the cases are invalid on procedural grounds. Normally, someone has to be impacted by a law in order to have standing to sue. So, if an abortionist did an abortion and was being prosecuted under the old law, the doctor would have standing to potentially sue on these grounds. But the governor and AG are essentially suing the legislature for a law that was passed before any of them were born.

What’s interesting is that Kaul’s and leftist DA’s refusal to prosecute anyone under the old law may mean that the law is never challenged in court at all. If the law is not being enforced, then nobody will ever be being prosecuted and have the standing to appeal over it. Kaul may need to prosecute and convict someone just to create a case to challenge the law. I still don’t think they would win, but at least they would have a case to use.

WEAC’s priorities are not Wisconsin’s, but they are Tony Evers’

Here is my column that ran in the Washington County Daily News last week. With all of the amazing news this week, we need to fight against Evers’ anti-education agenda so that our kids are smart enough to read and understand SCOTUS’ opinions for themselves.

Governor Tony Evers is famously opposed to using emails, having once told a reporter, “if I do one email a day, that’s an extraordinary day.” His staff, however, is not as uncomfortable with the newfangled 20th-century technology. Empower Wisconsin, a Wisconsin conservative news hub, recently acquired 256 pages of emails between Evers’ staff and the leaders of WEAC, the state teachers union. The emails reveal a familial relationship that confirms much of what we already knew, but also portends some of the disastrous policies that Evers may push if he is reelected.

 

What we have always known is that Tony Evers is a puppet of WEAC. Evers is a creature of the state’s government education bureaucracy and WEAC has been a major rhetorical and financial supporter of the governor for his entire political career. The emails confirm WEAC’s continued ownership of the governor. The emails are from the period in late 2020 when the Evers administration was bungling their way through the state government’s response to the pandemic. Several times, the emails show that Evers was making sure to keep WEAC involved and informed of the policy negotiations. WEAC’s president was invited by Evers to a live phone call to discuss policy matters. Given Evers’ continued stubborn averseness to even pick up the phone and call the Republicans in the Legislature, it is telling that Evers is willing to engage detailed policy discussions with the president of the teachers union. One wonders if Evers recorded that conversation as he did when he spoke with Republicans several years ago.

 

Evers also gave WEAC preemptive information long before he told the public. He gave WEAC a heads-up about vetoes before announcing them. When Evers was negotiating public policy with Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, Evers forwarded the draft legislation to WEAC to get their input.

 

It is clear that Governor Evers is a wholly owned subsidiary of WEAC who does not make a move without their input and direction, but the emails also tell us something about WEAC.

 

In late 2020, WEAC strongly pushed then Secretary-designee of the Department of Health Services Andrea Palm and Governor Evers to use state power to close all government schools. WEAC was flabbergasted that, “School districts across the state are caving to community pressure to remain open.” WEAC cannot stand by while local school boards listen to their constituents.

 

By this time in the pandemic, we already knew that the virus is a minimal risk to children and could already see the terrible impact school closures were having on our children’s education and mental health, but WEAC pushed for it anyway. Their concerns were, and are, not for the children. Their concerns are for money and power.

 

Given that WEAC’s motives are sordid, and they own Governor Evers, it is worth looking at WEAC’s top priorities that Evers may advance in a second term. Conveniently, Evers asked WEAC for their top five policy priorities. WEAC responded with their top four priorities. Even WEAC is failing at math and following directions.

 

WEAC’s first priority is to “remove all restriction related to compensation issues.” Currently, Act 10 limits compensation negotiations to the rate of inflation. Given that we are seeing over 8% inflation in Biden’s economy, WEAC would push for even more spending with which to burden the taxpayers of Wisconsin.

 

WEAC’s second priority is to place all government employees in the state health plan. In theory, this could be positive, but the emails also show that WEA Trust, the corrupt health insurance company owned by the teachers union, was an insurer for the state plan. Prior to Act 10, unions would negotiate into their contracts that the district was required to use WEA Trust. Then WEA Trust would charge above market rates. The union owns WEA Trust and forced school districts to use them at inflated rates. WEAC’s priority was to funnel more taxpayer money into WEAC via WEA Trust. Thankfully, Republicans in the Legislature would not support such a mandate and WEA Trust, unable to compete on a level playing field, has since exited the health insurance market.

 

WEAC’s third priority is to put a “just cause” provision in state law for government employees. Under current law, Wisconsin is an “at will” state where employers can end someone’s employment for any reason, or no reason, as long as it is not discriminatory. WEAC wants school districts to only be able to terminate teachers with just cause in order to prevent the “possibility of employee layoffs tied to budget shortfalls.” In other words, in an era of declining enrollment and people moving their kids out of government schools that failed them during the pandemic, WEAC wants to prevent school districts from reducing staff to be in line with lower enrollments. WEAC wants taxpayers to continue paying for government employees when there is not enough work to justify their jobs.

 

WEAC’s fourth priority is to eliminate the annual recertification requirement. This was a requirement from Act 10 that requires the employees of a government school district to recertify the union every year. Before Act 10, a local teachers union was perpetual even if the employees of that district had never voted for it. Under Act 10, the employees of a district must vote to have a union every year. The law holds unions accountable to ensure that they are serving their members. WEAC would rather that local unions be more accountable to WEAC than their constituent members.

 

WEAC’s Wisconsin is one of higher spending, less accountability, and more taxpayer money being funneled into WEAC to fuel their leftist activism and Tony Evers shares WEAC’s vision for Wisconsin. Wisconsin cannot afford another term of Tony Evers.

WEAC’s priorities are not Wisconsin’s, but they are Tony Evers’

My column for the Washington County Daily News is online and in print. Here’s a part:

Given that WEAC’s motives are sordid, and they own Governor Evers, it is worth looking at WEAC’s top priorities that Evers may advance in a second term. Conveniently, Evers asked WEAC for their top five policy priorities. WEAC responded with their top four priorities. Even WEAC is failing at math and following directions.

 

WEAC’s first priority is to “remove all restriction related to compensation issues.” Currently, Act 10 limits compensation negotiations to the rate of inflation. Given that we are seeing over 8% inflation in Biden’s economy, WEAC would push for even more spending with which to burden the taxpayers of Wisconsin.

 

WEAC’s second priority is to place all government employees in the state health plan. In theory, this could be positive, but the emails also show that WEA Trust, the corrupt health insurance company owned by the teachers union, was an insurer for the state plan. Prior to Act 10, unions would negotiate into their contracts that the district was required to use WEA Trust. Then WEA Trust would charge above market rates. The union owns WEA Trust and forced school districts to use them at inflated rates. WEAC’s priority was to funnel more taxpayer money into WEAC via WEA Trust. Thankfully, Republicans in the Legislature would not support such a mandate and WEA Trust, unable to compete on a level playing field, has since exited the health insurance market.

 

WEAC’s third priority is to put a “just cause” provision in state law for government employees. Under current law, Wisconsin is an “at will” state where employers can end someone’s employment for any reason, or no reason, as long as it is not discriminatory. WEAC wants school districts to only be able to terminate teachers with just cause in order to prevent the “possibility of employee layoffs tied to budget shortfalls.” In other words, in an era of declining enrollment and people moving their kids out of government schools that failed them during the pandemic, WEAC wants to prevent school districts from reducing staff to be in line with lower enrollments. WEAC wants taxpayers to continue paying for government employees when there is not enough work to justify their jobs.

Wisconsin’s pro-abortion governor

Here is my full column that ran last week in the Washington County Daily News.

Gov. Tony Evers has issued another executive order calling the Legislature into a special session for something that could have been proposed in the regular session. This time, Evers wants the Legislature to repeal the state law that prohibits all abortions unless the mother’s life is in danger. There are some curious aspects of Evers’ order.

 

The reason that Evers is calling for a special session is because a leaked draft of an opinion of the United States Supreme Court indicated that the high court is going to overturn the terrible Roe v. Wade decision of 1973. The court has not released the opinion and that may not be the case, but it seems likely that the court will finally correct this legal and moral abomination.

 

If that happens, it does not prohibit abortion. It would relegate the legal regulation of abortion to the states. In Wisconsin, state law still prohibits abortions except if the mother’s life is in danger. That state law would be in effect the moment the Supreme Court overrules Roe. Evers has been a longtime supporter of abortion. The only thing that seems to get his gears more than aborting babies is spending money on government education. He has a history of doing everything he can to support abortions, including giving millions of dollars of federal COVID relief money to Planned Parenthood. True to form, Evers is trying to make sure the abortion mill keeps grinding should Roe be overturned. Of course, the Republican-led Legislature is not going to repeal the state’s abortion ban. They know it. Evers knows it. Evers is calling for a special session for the sole political reason of making sure there are a few headlines from a compliant media that he can put in his re-election ads. It won’t sway any votes, but it will reaffirm his pro-abortion bona fides.

 

The language of Evers’ executive order itself is incredibly revealing. Words matter and, presumably, a lifelong educator chose his words with purpose. Let us look at a couple of excerpts. From Executive Order #168: “WHEREAS, licensed healthcare professionals should be able to provide appropriate, evidence-based medical advice to patients making reproductive healthcare decisions without fear of intimidation or criminal prosecution, and politicians should not interfere with the relationship between a patient and their doctor.”

 

Really? I seem to recall that Evers and his fellow Democrats have spent the last three years telling everyone that they must get a COVID vaccine. They have even mandated that people inject a new serum under penalty of law. They have shamed people who declined the vaccines and advocated that they should be shunned and prohibited from work. Forgive me if I roll my eyes at Evers’ protestations about politicians meddling in healthcare decisions.

 

Then there is this form the order: “without swift action, so many people — our neighbors, parents, families, and friends — could soon be unable to access the healthcare they need and deserve … .”

 

Did you notice something? In Evers’ full-throated defense of abortion, he never uses the word “woman” or that denotes that it is women who get pregnant and women who get abortions. In the new leftist orthodoxy, women are being erased with the dogma that anyone can get pregnant and have an abortion. The Democrats’ war on women is in full advance and Evers is merrily playing his fife in the vanguard.

 

Under this new convention, Evers is very specifically not defending women’s rights. He is defending abortions. Evers even calls his proposed law the “Abortion Rights Preservation Act.” Evers isn’t about women or women’s rights. He is about the abortions.

Wisconsin’s pro-abortion governor

My column for the Washington County Daily News is online and in print. Here’s a part:

The language of Evers’ executive order itself is incredibly revealing. Words matter and, presumably, a lifelong educator chose his words with purpose. Let us look at a couple of excerpts. From Executive Order #168: “WHEREAS, licensed healthcare professionals should be able to provide appropriate, evidence-based medical advice to patients making reproductive healthcare decisions without fear of intimidation or criminal prosecution, and politicians should not interfere with the relationship between a patient and their doctor.”

 

Really? I seem to recall that Evers and his fellow Democrats have spent the last three years telling everyone that they must get a COVID vaccine. They have even mandated that people inject a new serum under penalty of law. They have shamed people who declined the vaccines and advocated that they should be shunned and prohibited from work. Forgive me if I roll my eyes at Evers’ protestations about politicians meddling in healthcare decisions.

 

Then there is this form the order: “without swift action, so many people — our neighbors, parents, families, and friends — could soon be unable to access the healthcare they need and deserve … .”

 

Did you notice something? In Evers’ full-throated defense of abortion, he never uses the word “woman” or that denotes that it is women who get pregnant and women who get abortions. In the new leftist orthodoxy, women are being erased with the dogma that anyone can get pregnant and have an abortion. The Democrats’ war on women is in full advance and Evers is merrily playing his fife in the vanguard.

Trump’s endorsement changes GOP primary

Here is my full column that ran in the Washington County Daily News earlier this week

The long wait and speculation is over. Donald Trump has weighed in on the Republican primary for governor. Trump endorsed candidate Tim Michels saying, “Tim Michels is the best candidate to deliver meaningful solutions to these problems, and he will produce jobs like no one else can even imagine.” What does Trump’s endorsement mean for the election?

 

There is little doubt that Donald Trump still holds great sway in the Republican Party. Given his tremendous success as president and the legions of voters he attracted to the GOP, there are many Republican candidates who covet Trump’s endorsement. They covet it with good reason. Trump’s endorsement has the power to raise marginal candidates to be viable and to give a candidate enough support to win in a tight race. Trump’s endorsed candidates have a remarkable record of winning, but there are a couple of facts to keep in mind with that record. First, Trump has many positive qualities, but they come with some deep personal flaws. He is as narcissistic as they come and he wants to win. This has led him to endorse several candidates who were already going to win handily. This character flaw has also led him to endorse losing candidates because of personal grudges (Georgia). It also leads him to sometimes endorse the candidate that he thinks is going to win instead of who might actually be the best person for the job.

 

This leads us to the second fact to bear in mind with Trump endorsements. Trump’s passion to win trumps any ideology. His endorsements do not necessarily mean that the endorsee is conservative. For example, Dr. Mehmet Oz has a long-standing history of supporting gun control and big government healthcare, but he squeaked out a win in Pennsylvania over a proven conservative after Trump endorsed him. These are issues that loom large in the next Congress and Oz may prove to be a bad apple in the barrel of conservative policy.

 

With all of that in mind, Trump’s endorsement still matters a great deal in a tightly contested primary race like in Wisconsin. The difference of a few thousand votes could make the difference. Remembering that the Republican primary voter is not the same demographic as a general election voter, the impact of the endorsement in Wisconsin is varied.

 

Candidates Tim Michels, Rebecca Kleefisch, Kevin Nicholson, and Tim Ramthun all wanted Trump’s endorsement, but it mattered differently for each of them. For Ramthun, Trump’s endorsement was his only path to victory, but even had he received the endorsement, he stood little chance of winning. It was a long shot and he has zero chance of winning.

 

Nicholson is in much the same boat as Ramthun. Nicholson is a more viable candidate than Ramthun, but with two heavyweights in the race, he needed Trump’s endorsement to put him back in the ring. Without the endorsement of Trump, Nicholson’s odds are very, very long to edge out a victory.

 

Then there were two. Kleefisch had sought Trump’s endorsement, but receiving it would have likely been a mixed bag for her. It would have made her a more attractive candidate for some of the more Trumpian primary voters, but might have also turned off some of the stalwart conservative base Republicans who handed Senator Ted Cruz the primary victory in 2016 instead of Trump. Kleefisch won 55% of the vote at the state Republican convention a few weeks ago demonstrating that she already enjoys significant support amongst the reliable Republican primary voter.

 

By endorsing Michels, Trump has probably leveraged his greatest possible impact on the race. Coming in late, Michels is blitzing the state with commercials and had already moved to a virtual tie with Kleefisch. Trump’s endorsement gives Michels unlimited free media attention from a mainstream media that still laps up whatever scrap Trump throws in their bowls. The endorsement also likely moves some voters from Nicholson and Ramthun into the Michels camp. Combined, it makes Michels the frontrunner with nine weeks to go until the election.

 

Perhaps endorsing Michels was inevitable for Trump. They share interests as builders and businessmen. Michels was something of an insider during the Trump administration while serving on Trump’s infrastructure task force and as a financial supporter. Michels fits the same mold of the businessman-turned-politician. But Trump is always Trump’s biggest fan and does not endorse candidates who do not demonstrate fealty.

 

My fervent hope remains that the Republicans have a robust debate about the issues that matter to Wisconsinites and how Gov. Tony Evers has failed the people of Wisconsin. Winning on Aug. 9 is important for the candidates. Winning on Nov. 8 is crucial for Wisconsin.

Evers fails to act to stem rise in violent crime

Here is my full column that ran in the Washington County Daily News last week.

Two facts have become very clear this election year. First, crime is a huge priority for Wisconsinites. Second, crime is not a priority at all for Gov. Tony Evers.

 

Since Tony Evers took office, crime — particularly violent crime — is way up in Wisconsin. Reviewing the crime statistics compiled by Wisconsin’s Department of Justice tells a tragic story. In comparing 2018 (the last year before Evers took office) to 2021 (the last full year), there were 82% more murders in Wisconsin, 16% more aggravated assaults, and 111% more vehicle thefts.

 

Even more tragic, while murders were up by 82%, arrests for murder were only up 15%. And while aggravated assaults were up by 16%, arrests for aggravated assaults were down by 4%. We have more violent crime, and we are arresting fewer of those violent criminals.

 

The vast majority of the rise in crime is coming from Milwaukee. The crime in Milwaukee made national news last Friday when 21 people were shot near the Deer District after the Bucks game. The violence prompted the Bucks to cancel the planned watch party in the Deer District for game seven of the series. Sadly, such violence is only slightly worse than what has become a normal weekend night in Milwaukee. It would be easy to dismiss the crime in Milwaukee. After all, citizens of the city of Milwaukee made it clear in the last mayoral election that they are unconcerned with the crime. They had a clear choice to elect a pro-law enforcement crimefighter and picked the other guy instead. But Milwaukee remains an economic and cultural nexus of the state. What happens in Milwaukee impacts all of Wisconsin. Despite the rising crime that is eating the core of Wisconsin’s largest city and spreading to other communities, Evers has made it clear that fighting crime is not a priority. After each heinous crime, Evers tweets the requisite sympathies and admonitions to behave, but does nothing.

 

After a monster with a history of violent crime and racist online rants was freed on $1,000 bail in Milwaukee two days before careening through the Waukesha Christmas Parade killing six and injuring dozens, Evers shared the appropriate sentiments and did nothing. Evers did not even admonish Milwaukee District Attorney John Chisholm for recommending a trivial bail, nor did he use his power as governor to remove Chisholm from office. Chisholm’s office has a history of coddling violent criminals, but Evers supports Chisholm’s policies.

 

After the shootings in Milwaukee last week, Evers once again took to media outlets to express his sorrow and outrage. And once again he is not acting to make any changes to keep it from happening again. Evers’ lieutenant governor, Mandela Barnes, who is also running for U.S. Senate, tweeted about the need for gun control — the old hobby horse of totalitarians throughout modern history — without even bothering to give any specific policy prescriptions.

 

In each of Evers’ budgets, he failed to offer any policy initiatives to reduce crime. Instead, under the label of “criminal justice reform,” Evers proposed spending more money on education and training for crooks in jail. He campaigned on closing the juvenile facilities of Lincoln Hills and Copper Lake, but four years later, they remain open waiting for a better solution for Wisconsin’s young criminals. Evers is consistent in advocating to legalize marijuana as a means of reducing crime, but such policies are more about appeasing college kids and crusty hippies. Nowhere in Evers’ budgets is there anything designed to lock up more criminals, empower law enforcement, or compel district attorneys and judges to conduct themselves with the rigor and vigor that justice and victims deserve.

 

Safe behind the walls of his taxpayer-provided mansion with armed guards escorting him wherever he goes, Governor Evers has consistently demonstrated disinterest in the explosion in violent crime that is wrecking lives and destroying the quality of life in the state. Wisconsin needs a new governor who cares more about victims than criminals.

Evers fails to act to stem rise in violent crime

My column for the Washington County Daily News is online and in print. Here’s a part:

Two facts have become very clear this election year. First, crime is a huge priority for Wisconsinites. Second, crime is not a priority at all for Gov. Tony Evers.

 

Since Tony Evers took office, crime — particularly violent crime — is way up in Wisconsin. Reviewing the crime statistics compiled by Wisconsin’s Department of Justice tells a tragic story. In comparing 2018 (the last year before Evers took office) to 2021 (the last full year), there were 82% more murders in Wisconsin, 16% more aggravated assaults, and 111% more vehicle thefts.

 

Even more tragic, while murders were up by 82%, arrests for murder were only up 15%. And while aggravated assaults were up by 16%, arrests for aggravated assaults were down by 4%. We have more violent crime, and we are arresting fewer of those violent criminals.

 

[…]

 

After the shootings in Milwaukee last week, Evers once again took to media outlets to express his sorrow and outrage. And once again he is not acting to make any changes to keep it from happening again. Evers’ lieutenant governor, Mandela Barnes, who is also running for U.S. Senate, tweeted about the need for gun control — the old hobby horse of totalitarians throughout modern history — without even bothering to give any specific policy prescriptions.

 

In each of Evers’ budgets, he failed to offer any policy initiatives to reduce crime. Instead, under the label of “criminal justice reform,” Evers proposed spending more money on education and training for crooks in jail. He campaigned on closing the juvenile facilities of Lincoln Hills and Copper Lake, but four years later, they remain open waiting for a better solution for Wisconsin’s young criminals. Evers is consistent in advocating to legalize marijuana as a means of reducing crime, but such policies are more about appeasing college kids and crusty hippies. Nowhere in Evers’ budgets is there anything designed to lock up more criminals, empower law enforcement, or compel district attorneys and judges to conduct themselves with the rigor and vigor that justice and victims deserve.

 

Safe behind the walls of his taxpayer-provided mansion with armed guards escorting him wherever he goes, Governor Evers has consistently demonstrated disinterest in the explosion in violent crime that is wrecking lives and destroying the quality of life in the state. Wisconsin needs a new governor who cares more about victims than criminals.

Nursing Board President Resigns in Protest Over Evers’ Veto

To be fair, Evers does everything for political reasons irrespective of the underlying policy implications. He’s consistent like that.

The president of the Wisconsin Board of Nursing resigned to protest Gov. Tony Evers’ veto of legislation to allow registered nurses to be licensed as advanced practice nurses.

 

In his resignation letter, Dr. Peter Kallio wrote the “veto appeared politically motivated to appease a small group of doctors who want to dictate nursing practice and that, unfortunately, makes this Board of Nursing ineffective.” He accused Evers of “a pure disregard for our profession.”

 

His term was set to expire in July. Kallio also resigned from the Controlled Substances Board.

 

SB 394 would’ve allowed advanced practice nurse practitioners to issue prescription orders, among other things.

Evers bestows Office of Environmental Justice on Wisconsin

Here is my full column that ran in the Washington County Daily News last week:

In the face of a contracting economy, high gas prices, the worst inflation in 40 years, raging violent crime, and a collapse of government education, Gov. Tony Evers has ordered the Department of Administration to create an Office of Environmental Justice. Wisconsin clearly has a governor with his finger on the pulse of what is important to the people of Wisconsin.

 

This was not Governor Evers’ first attempt at creating an OEJ. He put the creation of the office into his draft of the most recent state budget. The Legislature, seeing no reason to enlarge government with another expensive office full of environmental activists who would erode the state’s economy as they empty the taxpayers’ pockets, declined to put the OEJ into the final version of the budget that Evers signed into law. Not to be denied, Evers has now created the OEJ by executive order under the mistaken belief that the state Constitution grants the governor to do whatever he wants via executive order when he does not get his way in the Legislature. The key to understanding the OEJ, and how bad it will be for Wisconsin, is to understand that it is not about the environment. The mission of the OEJ is not to make sure that Wisconsin protects the environment. The OEJ is not a regulatory agency to ensure that the state has reasonably clean air and water. OEJ officials will not be helping to clean up industrial accidents. The key word in the Office of Environmental Justice is not “environmental.” The key word is “justice,” as Tony Evers and the woke left defines it. I invite the reader to take a moment and go read the executive order creating the OEJ. It is easy to find. It is Executive Order #161 and it is only three pages. As with all government proclamations, there are a series of “whereas” clauses that build the justification for the order being issued. Eight of the ten “whereas” clauses in Evers’ order are about racial or social equity.

 

Only one “whereas,” the sixth one, claims that there is an environmental issue that justifies the creation of a new government office. Meanwhile, the order is replete with phrases like, “promoting environmental equity,” “environmental justice movement,” “communities of color in urban ghettos,” and “right to equitable treatment.”

 

The goal of the OEJ is not to make sure that Wisconsin has a cleaner environment. The goal is to ensure that Wisconsin’s environmental regulations meet the racial and social “equity” standard of the woke left. In the nine directives for the OEJ detailed in the executive order, there is no mention of environmental goals. Instead, the new office is directed to do things like review the impact of state laws, regulations, and policy on equitable treatment, develop recommendations using the Wisconsin environmental equity tools, and “develop a framework and strategy for environmental justice work across the administration.”

 

The message from the Evers administration is clear. In Wisconsin, there will be one more state agency to harass and bully businesses and homeowners for any environmental transgressions, real or perceived. Except now, running afoul of the environmental regulatory apparatus could also be deemed racist, transphobic, or whatever violation of “equity” can be applied from the Office of Environmental Justice. Governor Evers continues to run roughshod over the legislative process to push the woke agenda through state government. Meanwhile he continues to nap while Wisconsinites are facing real economic and social hardships. One term in office is one too many for this governor.

Democrats Pour Money into State to Defend Evers

They’re nervous.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A Democratic group is focusing its television advertising spending in the upper Midwest states of Michigan and Wisconsin where Democratic incumbent governors face tough reelection bids.

 

The Democratic Governors Association’s announced Wednesday that it is spending $75 million on ads in seven states, with $23 million going to help Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and $21 million for Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers.

 

The spending in Wisconsin is more than triple the $6.2 million that the Republican Governors Association said two months ago it planned to spend in the state, at least initially. The RGA said it would spend $3.5 million in Michigan starting in mid-October.

Evers bestows Office of Environmental Justice on Wisconsin

My column for the Washington County Daily News is online and in print. Here’s a part:

The key to understanding the OEJ, and how bad it will be for Wisconsin, is to understand that it is not about the environment. The mission of the OEJ is not to make sure that Wisconsin protects the environment. The OEJ is not a regulatory agency to ensure that the state has reasonably clean air and water. OEJ officials will not be helping to clean up industrial accidents. The key word in the Office of Environmental Justice is not “environmental.” The key word is “justice,” as Tony Evers and the woke left defines it. I invite the reader to take a moment and go read the executive order creating the OEJ. It is easy to find. It is Executive Order #161 and it is only three pages. As with all government proclamations, there are a series of “whereas” clauses that build the justification for the order being issued. Eight of the ten “whereas” clauses in Evers’ order are about racial or social equity.

 

Only one “whereas,” the sixth one, claims that there is an environmental issue that justifies the creation of a new government office. Meanwhile, the order is replete with phrases like, “promoting environmental equity,” “environmental justice movement,” “communities of color in urban ghettos,” and “right to equitable treatment.”

 

The goal of the OEJ is not to make sure that Wisconsin has a cleaner environment. The goal is to ensure that Wisconsin’s environmental regulations meet the racial and social “equity” standard of the woke left.

Evers shows support for sloppy and fraudulent elections

Here is my full column that ran in the Washington County Daily News last week. You might have noticed that Evers had another batch of terrible vetoes on Friday. He is the worst governor this state has had in my lifetime.

Last week, Gov. Tony Evers reminded us of what a terrible governor he is though a string of vetoes upholding his support of policies that lead to higher crime and dumber kids. Before the week had ended, Evers used his veto pen again to affirm his support for policies that enable vote fraud and disenfranchise every legal voter.

 

While some political junkies might give Evers some latitude for vetoing good bills for political advantage, he did it at the expense of good governance and a better Wisconsin. He is willing to have another year of sloppy, questionable, possibly fraudulent elections as long as he thinks it will benefit his political ambitions.

 

Evers vetoed seven individual bills related to elections. Irrespective of the political motivations of the Republicans or the Democrats, ask yourselves if each bill should have been signed into law based on its merits.

 

The first bill would have prohibited anyone other than the voter, immediate family member, or legal guardian from returning an absentee ballot. This is to put a stop to the practice of ballot harvesting. Taken in the abstract with the assumption of complete honesty, ballot harvesting is a convenience. But taken in light of the real world of corrupt characters, ballot harvesting is a license to organize the delivery of thousands of virtually undetectable fraudulent votes. Would you have vetoed a bill banning ballot harvesting?

 

The second bill would have clearly defined who can identify as indefinitely confined for the purpose of absentee voting. This provision of the law, intended as a convenience for those who are truly indefinitely confined due to age, illness, or disability, was widely abused during the pandemic by able-bodied voters who assumed the heavy cloak of disability to cast their votes then set it aside to go about their lives. Such appropriation of status is not only immoral, but it is a way to commit vote fraud by bypassing Wisconsin’s voter ID law. Would you have vetoed a bill that would have ensured that only those who are truly indefinitely confined can vote as such?

 

The third bill would have simply required the state to conduct regular checks to ensure that registered voters are citizens of our nation. Voting is a right of citizenship, and the bill would have simply had the state try to ensure that citizenship means something. Would you have vetoed the bill?

 

The fourth bill would have prohibited the spending of private money to administer elections. In the 2020 election, wealthy liberals offered millions of dollars to local election officials to “help” them administer elections. Several Wisconsin municipalities accepted. The bill would have ensured that elections are administered by government officials with taxpayer funds to ensure the transparency and accountability that voters deserve. Would you have vetoed the bill?

 

The fifth bill would have prohibited election clerks from filling out missing information on absentee ballots. Clerks have been taking on the guise of voters to fill out incomplete absentee forms for years. It is a practice that contributes to sloppy elections and lazy election clerks. Would you have vetoed a bill that requires voters to fill our their absentee ballot envelopes correctly and by themselves?

 

The last two bills had to do with the function of the Wisconsin Elections Commission. Unlike the previous five which should have all been signed into law, the last two are more questionable, but not for the reasons that Evers vetoed them.

 

The sixth bill would have required that the WEC hire Republican and Democratic lawyers to provide contrary legal advice instead of using purportedly nonpartisan lawyers. This bill would have provided a range of opinions for the commissioners to consider but might have driven unnecessary expenses.

 

The seventh bill would have had the Legislature own the guidance delivered to local election clerks by the WEC. This would have provided a check on the WEC doling out bad and illegal guidance.

 

The seventh bill is in the right direction but did not go far enough. The WEC has proven to be a poor and corrupt mechanism for the administration of Wisconsin’s elections. The Legislature should abolish it and looks to other states for better examples of ways to run clean, fair, open, honest, and secure elections.

 

Governor Evers has supported the wholesale subversion of Wisconsin’s election laws during the pandemic because he thinks it had benefitted Democrats like himself. His continued support for policies that enable and encourage sloppy and fraudulent election practices is a statement on his character.

Evers Uses Veto to Maintain Arbitrary Authority to Close Businesses

Yup.

MADISON, April 14, 2022 – Today, NFIB is expressing frustration with legislation that would prevent the government from arbitrarily mandating business closures during an emergency has been vetoed by Governor Tony Evers.

 

Assembly Bill 912 would have required businesses be treated equally during an emergency declaration by their government.

 

Bill G. Smith, State Director of the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) in Wisconsin, the state’s leading small business organization, said Wisconsin’s small business community is deeply disappointed with the Governor’s decision to veto this important legislation.

 

“The Governor has extraordinary discretion to implement and administer economic relief programs during an emergency,” said Smith, “this legislation did not interfere with the Governor’s ability to target resources or implement programs that would benefit small business during an emergency.”

 

“Unfortunately, as a result of this veto, the government will continue to use its power to choose winners and losers by closing down local small businesses during an emergency, while allowing big box corporate retail establishments to remain open and fully operational,” said Smith.

Evers shows support for sloppy and fraudulent elections

My column for the Washington County Daily News is online and in print. Here’s a part:

Last week, Gov. Tony Evers reminded us of what a terrible governor he is though a string of vetoes upholding his support of policies that lead to higher crime and dumber kids. Before the week had ended, Evers used his veto pen again to affirm his support for policies that enable vote fraud and disenfranchise every legal voter.

 

While some political junkies might give Evers some latitude for vetoing good bills for political advantage, he did it at the expense of good governance and a better Wisconsin. He is willing to have another year of sloppy, questionable, possibly fraudulent elections as long as he thinks it will benefit his political ambitions.

 

[…]

 

Governor Evers has supported the wholesale subversion of Wisconsin’s election laws during the pandemic because he thinks it had benefitted Democrats like himself. His continued support for policies that enable and encourage sloppy and fraudulent election practices is a statement on his character.

Evers Supports Election Fraud With Vetoes

Your vote will count a little less in Wisconsin as Evers keeps the door open for organized fraud in Wisconsin’s elections.

The bills Evers vetoed would have:

 

— Prohibited anyone other than the voter, an immediate family member or a legal guardian from returning an absentee ballot. That issue is currently pending before the Wisconsin Supreme Court, with oral arguments scheduled for next week.

 

— Barred the spending of private money on the administration of elections. Republicans have cried foul over $8.8 million in grants Wisconsin’s largest and most Democratic cities received in 2020 from the Center for Tech and Civic Life, a group funded by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg. Grants were also awarded to smaller, majority Republican cities.

 

Republicans are trying to get around the veto by putting the ban in the state constitution. That would require approval by voters as early as next year.

 

— Bar election clerks from filling in any missing information on a voter’s absentee ballot envelope. Trump had argued that thousands of ballots where clerks filled in missing information on the outside envelope should be discounted, but courts rejected his argument. The bipartisan Wisconsin Elections Commission had advised clerks for years that filling in the missing information was OK.

 

— Require the bipartisan elections commission to hire Republican and Democratic-aligned attorneys to work with commission members and offer what would likely be contrary legal advice. Nonpartisan attorneys currently work for the commission.

 

— Give the Legislature control over guidance delivered to local election clerks by the bipartisan Wisconsin Elections Commission.

 

— Limit who can identify as indefinitely confined, a status that allows for absentee ballots for those who can’t get to the polls due to age, illness or disability.

 

— Require the state to conduct checks to ensure that registered voters are United States citizens.

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