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Sunday, January 25, 2015 |  Madison, WI: 24.0° F  Partly Cloudy
The Daily


Wisconsin's GOP presidential primary is a mere sideshow to the Walker recall

Hey, did you hear the Republican presidential candidates are in Wisconsin this week? Wait…why are you yawning? In any other quadrennial year, having presidential candidates descend on Wisconsin would be a big deal. In 2008, with the Democratic nomination still up for grabs, scores of national volunteers and media outlets descended on the Badger State to report on the fight between Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. >More
 The GOP-controlled Wisconsin Legislature spent its time on sex, sex, sex

The Legislature finally finished its session, and here is what we got: $1.6 billion in cuts to our public schools and a $300 million increase for dubious, unaccountable voucher schools. The repeal of the Healthy Youth Act mandating accurate, age-appropriate sex education. A ban on private health insurers providing abortion coverage. The rollback of the state's pay-equity law for women. 23,000 low-income Wisconsinites losing their health insurance under BadgerCare, including 2,900 children. Here is what we didn't get: Jobs. >More
 Madison's cultural plan gets it wrong

Anne Katz modestly describes Madison's long-pondered cultural plan as "a beginning point" for giving the arts a more prominent role in Madison life. As chair of the cultural plan steering committee, she further dampens expectations by saying that no one recommendation outweighs another. >More
 Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council 2012 Opee Awards recognize media and lawmakers

As part of national Sunshine Week, March 11-17, the Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council is bestowing its annual "Opee" Awards for openness in government. And Wisconsin state lawmakers have been tapped for both kinds of awards -- good as well as bad. Six Opees are being given to eight individuals for 2011-12. >More
 The Block 100 Foundation proposal will make for a less interesting State Street

If you're going to mess with a block as historic as the 100 block of State Street, then you have to answer two questions: What's the justification for that change? And will what you build to replace it be better than what is there now? In my view, Jerry Frautschi's proposal for the 100 block (made through his 100 Block Foundation) doesn't come with sufficient reason for change, and it would be a good deal less interesting than the current buildings. >More
 Say no to suburban sprawl: Verona can grow without grabbing hundreds more acres

The West Branch of the Sugar River was removed from the Environmental Protection Agency's list of endangered waters only a few years ago. This river is a vital natural and economic resource that's home to some of the finest fishing and canoeing in Dane County. That's just one of many good reasons I and many others have questioned the need for a proposed housing development on a steep hill south of Verona that runs straight down into a popular trout steam in this watershed. >More
 Trouble in FitzWalkerstan: Jeff Fitzgerald's stalled Senate campaign reflects Scott Walker's falling fortunes

What ever happened to Jeff Fitzgerald? The Assembly speaker and water-carrier-in-chief for Gov. Scott Walker was supposed to reap his rewards for leading the tea party takeover of our state Legislature when he burst on the scene as Walker's favored candidate for U.S. Senate. When Fitzgerald announced his candidacy, to replace the retiring Herb Kohl, the National Journal ran a story explaining why Fitz could win. >More
 Why would Dane County block responsible development in Verona?

During the most persistent economic downturn in decades, would the Dane County executive deliberately obstruct environmentally responsible development that creates hundreds of new jobs? If you think the answer is "never," consider the recent experience of the city of Verona. >More
 Sen. Vinehout would be a strong contender for governor in the Wisconsin recall election

Among possible Democratic candidates for governor who spoke to the People's Legislature last week, state Sen. Kathleen Vinehout, a dairy farmer from Alma, stole the show. Vinehout is a great speaker -- warm, passionate and full of compelling facts. It was she who calculated, around the time Gov. Walker gave his State of the State address, that 85% of the jobs Walker claims to have created in Wisconsin are actually jobs Wisconsinites have taken outside the state. >More
 Choosing Walker's opponent: Let's have a wide-open Democratic primary

There's an old Will Rogers joke that goes: "I belong to no organized political party. I'm a Democrat." I have used that line more than once, but in all seriousness, the organization of the effort to recall Gov. Scott Walker has been nothing short of brilliant. Not only was the signature-gathering a well-oiled machine, but it was smart and unusually disciplined of my party to keep potential candidates in the background so that the focus could remain on Walker. >More
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