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Bob Kiefert, Green Bay Progressive

Bob Kiefert, Green Bay Progressive

Bob Kiefert is the Publisher of the Northeast Wisconsin - Green Bay Progressive. Before moving to Green Bay in 2008, he was the Assistant Director of Human Resources for Milwaukee County. A graduate of UWM in 1971, he moved to Madison, where he was Executive Personnel Officer and Technology Manager for the State Department of Employment Relations. He is a former Vice Chair of the Democratic Party of Brown County, Director at the Human Resources Management Association of S.E. Wisconsin (now SHRM), and Technology Commission Chair for the City of Franklin. Bob is a veteran of the U.S. Air Force (1965-1971).

Shifting Turnout Intentions, Gender Gap Put Walker in Lead Says Final Marquette Poll

Posted by Bob Kiefert, Green Bay Progressive
Bob Kiefert, Green Bay Progressive
Bob Kiefert is the Publisher of the Northeast Wisconsin - Green Bay Progressive.
User is currently offline
on Wednesday, 29 October 2014
in Wisconsin

walkerMILWAUKEE - The shifting winds of who says they are most likely to vote and the different realities of men and women voters appear to have turned back in Scott Walker's favor according to the Final Pre-election Marquette Law School Poll released today. The new poll finds Republican Scott Walker leading Democratic challenger Mary Burke 50 percent to 43 percent among likely voters in the Wisconsin governor’s race.

mary-burkeThe previous Marquette Law School Poll, conducted Oct. 9-12, found the race tied among likely voters, with the candidates holding 47 percent each, while 48 percent of registered voters supported Walker to Burke’s 45 percent support.

In Wednesday's poll, 3 percent say that they are undecided or that they do not know whom they will support, while 1 percent say that they will vote for someone else. Likely voters are those who say that they are certain to vote in the November election.

“Shifting turnout intentions have provided most of the dynamics of the race this fall,” said Marquette Law School Poll director Charles Franklin. “While the results among all registered voters have varied between a tie and a 3-point Walker edge, the likely-voter results have ranged from a 2-point Burke advantage to the current 7-point Walker lead.”

In the current poll, 93 percent of Republicans say that they are certain to vote, while 82 percent of Democrats and 75 percent of independents say the same. Two weeks ago 82 percent of Republicans, and 80 percent of both Democrats and independents, said that they were certain to vote. By comparison, in the final Marquette Law School Poll before the 2012 gubernatorial recall election, 92 percent of Republicans, 77 percent of Democrats and 84 percent of independents said that they were certain to vote.

Among registered voters this time, Walker receives 46 percent and Burke 45 percent, with 4 percent undecided and 1 percent saying that they will vote for someone else.

The poll interviewed 1,409 registered voters, including 1,164 likely voters, by landline and cell phone Oct. 23-26. For the full sample of 1,409 registered voters, the margin of error is +/- 2.7 percentage points. The margin of error for the sample of 1,164 likely voters is +/- 3.0 percentage points. This is the final Marquette Law School Poll before the Nov. 4 election.

Another factor in the final poll result is the return of the large gender gap among likely voters. After narrowing to just 2 percentage points in the previous poll, the gender gap in vote choice has returned.

Among registered voters, Burke leads 50-40 among women and Walker leads 53-39 among men. Among likely voters, Burke’s lead among women is 49-43 while Walker’s lead among men is 58-36. In the six Marquette Law School Polls since July, Burke has averaged a 49-42 lead among women and Walker a 52-40 lead among men for registered voters. Among likely voters, Burke has averaged a 52-42 lead among women and Walker a 55-40 advantage among men.

Another factor in the results may have been the deluge of negative ads launched by the Walker campaign and their allies to muddy the image of Mary Burke.

Burke’s favorability ratings have turned down in the latest poll, with 38 percent of registered voters viewing her favorably while 45 percent have an unfavorable view. In earlier polls in September and October, her favorable-unfavorable ratings were 36-35, 36-37 and 40-43. Among likely voters, her current favorable-unfavorable rating is 39-49, with the ratings in the three earlier polls since the beginning of September being, oldest to newest, 41-39, 40-44 and 44-44. Among registered voters, 17 percent lack an opinion of Burke, down from 69 percent in January. Among likely voters, 12 percent say they haven’t heard enough or don’t know their view of Burke.

Walker’s favorable rating in the latest poll is 48 percent, with 47 percent unfavorable, among registered voters. His previous ratings since the beginning of September are 49-45, 47-47 and 48-48. Among likely voters he is currently seen favorably by 51 percent and unfavorably by 46 percent. His ratings among likely voters in the three most recent polls are, in chronological order, 52-46, 52-46 and 50-48.

Given the wide swings in the last three polls, this race is still up for grabs. Early voting and absentee voting have begun and people who have already voted are much more likely to "say that they are certain to vote". Democratic voters are legendary for showing up at the polls after 6 PM on election day. Many factors could cause the wind to shift back in Burke's favor.

But this poll is not good news for the Burke campaign and the Democrats will have to double their efforts in the final days to get their supporters to the polls.

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Walker's Involvement In Real Estate Scandal Raise Troubling Questions About Rush To Sell State Property

Posted by Bob Kiefert, Green Bay Progressive
Bob Kiefert, Green Bay Progressive
Bob Kiefert is the Publisher of the Northeast Wisconsin - Green Bay Progressive.
User is currently offline
on Monday, 27 October 2014
in Wisconsin

walkerMADISON - Senate Democrats are alarmed at new revelations about Governor Scott Walker's role in providing insider information to a personal friend and campaign donor in a Milwaukee County real estate scandal. Democrats said the new allegations of “bid-rigging” and "pay-to-play" politics raise troubling questions about Gov. Walker’s rush to sell state property.

“Giving inside information to close friends and campaign operatives to help them circumvent the public bidding process not only cheats the other businesses bidding on projects but the taxpayers and our open form of government,” said Sen. Dave Hansen (D-Green Bay). “No matter how you look at it, it’s wrong and raises serious questions about whether Scott Walker has taken other similar liberties as Governor.”

dave_hansen“As Republicans rush to sell state property, we need to ensure that similar backroom deals for special interests aren’t cheating our taxpayers,” said Sen. Jennifer Shilling (D-La Crosse). “Gov. Walker’s administration has already failed to disclose the fair market value of property they are looking to sell as required by state law. The rush to sell state property to the highest bidder without having adequate safeguards in place puts taxpayers at risk and has been troubling since day one.”

Gov. Walker has recently come under fire for several high-profile scandals including a $700,000 campaign contribution from GTAC – an out-of-state mining corporation – which successfully lobbied to change state open-pit mining laws. An investigation also revealed that Gov. Walker’s Economic Development Corporation has funneled millions of taxpayer dollars to businesses and special interests with close personal ties to Gov. Walker.

“Despite Scott Walker’s denials, all of these actions have taken place since he became governor and they give the public every reason to question his ethics and what else he’s been doing that we don’t know about,” added Sen. Hansen. “Wisconsin citizens deserve answers and it’s is time for the Governor to come clean about his actions.”

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Walker and Republicans are Lying About the Budget Crisis

Posted by Bob Kiefert, Green Bay Progressive
Bob Kiefert, Green Bay Progressive
Bob Kiefert is the Publisher of the Northeast Wisconsin - Green Bay Progressive.
User is currently offline
on Wednesday, 22 October 2014
in Wisconsin

scott_walkerNon-partisan Politifact exposes political cover-up.


MADISON - Today’s analysis by the non-partisan Politifact shows that Governor Walker and Republican leaders have been caught lying about the state’s financial condition rather than acknowledge that the policies they have pursued have created a $1.8 billion budget crisis.

We reached a trusted local source, State Senator Dave Hansen (D-Green Bay) for comment.

dave-hansen“Over and over Governor Walker and Republican leaders have tried to convince people that we do not have a budget crisis despite data from the non-partisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau that shows the state is facing a $1.8 billion deficit heading into the next budget cycle” said Hansen. “If they had said it once or twice and acknowledged their mistake it would be one thing. But despite being called out on their fiction they continue to tell the people something they know is not true. They’re lying plain and simple.”

Using a long-established method that has been accepted and used by governors and members of both political parties Politifact concluded that Wisconsin is in fact facing a $1.8 billion structural deficit going into the next budget cycle.

Hansen went on: “Giving away billions in tax breaks to their rich and corporate friends at the expense of our kids’ education, wasting millions in tax dollars on failed and suspect private voucher schools and steering millions in tax dollars to their campaign contributors under the guise of economic development has created not just a budget crisis but also a jobs crisis and income crisis for Wisconsin families. It is shameful behavior and lying about it only makes it worse.”

Under Governor Walker Wisconsin is facing a $1.8 billion deficit, is dead last for job growth in the Midwest since he took office, Wisconsin families have seen their yearly incomes fall by over $2,700 and Wisconsin workers are now earning $5,000 less per year than their counterparts in Minnesota.

Finally, Hansen said: “Instead of cherry-picking statistics, using false numbers and trying to spin the facts, Governor Walker and the Republicans owe the people of this state an apology—both for the economic disaster they’ve created and for not being honest about it.”

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Scott Walker Eliminated Funding for ShotSpotter Program

Posted by Bob Kiefert, Green Bay Progressive
Bob Kiefert, Green Bay Progressive
Bob Kiefert is the Publisher of the Northeast Wisconsin - Green Bay Progressive.
User is currently offline
on Monday, 20 October 2014
in Wisconsin

policeMILWAUKEE - Sometimes, when you are a career politician like Scott Walker, you just claim credit for a sexy sounding program whether you supported it or not. That's apparently what Walker did when pressed on his Public Safety record in last Friday's debate with Mary Burke.

Scott Walker cited the Milwaukee Police Department's ShotSpotter program as one of his major accomplishments. The technology, in use in high-crime areas in the city, uses sensors to detect gunshots. According to Milwaukee's Democratic mayor Tom Barrett, "This is a very effective law enforcement tool".

Unfortunately, when Barrett asked for state money to run the program back in 2013, Walker was not that supportive. Scott Walker eliminated funding for the ShotSpotter program in Milwaukee - $445,400 in the 2013-2015 budget.

Walker defended his cut by lauding his signature of the bill with reduced funding for the program. The governor called Mary Burke’s comments denouncing his cuts as “hogwash.”

Only after intense pressure from the public and law enforcement officials did Scott Walker and the Republican-controlled legislature partially restored funding by $175,000.

That's the real story.

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Where Does Walker Stand?

Posted by Bob Kiefert, Green Bay Progressive
Bob Kiefert, Green Bay Progressive
Bob Kiefert is the Publisher of the Northeast Wisconsin - Green Bay Progressive.
User is currently offline
on Wednesday, 15 October 2014
in Wisconsin

walkerGREEN BAY - Every few days, as I drive over to the Piggly Wiggly in Howard, I pass a yard sign that proudly proclaims “We Stand With Walker”. It’s a Scott Walker campaign sign and I guess it makes these people believe they are heroically standing up against something or other.

Anyway, this morning in my email I received a interesting link from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel entitled Watch live: Walker meets with Journal Sentinel editors, reporters. I wanted to see how Scott Walker answered their questions.

Now, I'm no Walker fan, but at least I was willing to listen. What I heard truly shocked me. I listened to the reporters ask him some fairly specific questions in “Walker on jobs pledge”, “Walker on his abortion stance”, and “Walker on the minimum wage” and saw nothing but a politician intent upon dodging the questions.

Really, where does this guy stand, exactly, on any of these issues? Does he think he should be held accountable on his failure to meet his 2010 pledge to create 250,000 jobs in Wisconsin during his first term? Does he personally believe all abortions should be banned, even in cases of rape or incest, after 20 weeks, or never because its a hard choice? If you don't raise the minimum wage here in Wisconsin, how exactly will everyone get these new higher paid jobs that he says will become available?

I challenge any of my neighbors, who “Stand With Walker”, to listen to these video links and honestly tell me what he and they stand for on each issue.

My parents, proud members of the “Greatest Generation”, born in 1905 and 1912, saw a lot of politicians in their lives and had one major rule - “it doesn't matter what they stand for, so much as that they stand for something”. “Wishy washy” politicians, who you couldn't pin down, were the worst kind.

I listened to these reporters, some of which I know, try to pin Walker down and saw their frustration grow. Is this all we expect of our governor?

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