Tuesday January 18, 2022

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Johnson Stood Against New Bipartisan Law To End Surprise Medical Bills PDF Print E-mail
Elections, Elected Officials, Political Parties
Written by WisDems Press, Philip Shulman   
Wednesday, 05 January 2022 09:52

ron-johnsonMADISON, Wis. –  On Saturday, a new law that puts an end to surprise medical billing went into effect, despite Senator Johnson’s efforts to stop the bipartisan effort. If Johnson had his way, instead of seeing lower costs, Wisconsinites who had medical emergencies would still be subject to predatory tactics.

“When it comes to supporting legislation that enriched himself and his biggest donors Senator Ron Johnson led the charge, but on legislation to lower health care costs for Wisconsinites and end surprise medical billing Johnson stood in opposition. Wisconsinites are tired of being sold out by Senator Johnson and are going to remember his opposition to lowering their health care costs in November,” said Democratic Party of Wisconsin Senate Communications Advisor Philip Shulman.

Senator Johnson, who believes access to health care is a “privilege” reserved for those who can “afford” it, has a long record of working to raise health care costs for Wisconsinites and take away access to quality care. Johnson has spent his time in the Senate trying to repeal the Affordable Care Act, putting Medicare funding in his cross hairs, and voting against COVID-19 vaccine and test funding.

Last Updated on Saturday, 08 January 2022 09:57
 
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel “U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson's 10 most controversial statements of 2021” PDF Print E-mail
Elections, Elected Officials, Political Parties
Written by WisDems Press, Philip Shulman   
Tuesday, 04 January 2022 10:37

ron-johnson-quibblesMADISON, Wis. – Throughout 2021 Ron Johnson’s top priority was spreading controversial and often flat out false statements in an effort to avoid having to explain his record of failure to Wisconsities. See below for a roundup from The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel of Johnson’s most out of touch and controversial statements:

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Bice: U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson's 10 most controversial statements of 2021

It was the year of U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson, unleashed.

[...]

Johnson began airing his opinions on a wide range of issues  — questioning everything from COVID-19 vaccines to the Jan. 6 insurrection and the reality of climate change. And he kept doing it. Before long, his words became a regular feature on influential conservative news sites and late-night TV shows.

[...]

1. Questioning COVID-19 vaccinations.

"We all hoped and prayed the vaccines would be 100% effective, 100% safe,” Johnson said just this week on Fox News Primetime. “But they’re not. We now know that fully vaccinated individuals can catch Covid, they can transmit Covid. So what’s the point?”

It didn't take long for the medical establishment to take note that Johnson failed to mention the fact that vaccinations greatly reduce the risk of hospitalization or death.

"I’d say that he’s so misguided that it makes me wonder whether this is all just an act,” responded Jonathan Reiner, the medical analyst for CNN. "And if this is not an act, then he is just the most ignorant man in the United States Senate. And that says a lot."

2. Downplaying the Jan. 6 Capitol attack.

"This didn’t seem like an armed insurrection to me," the Oshkosh Republican said in a February radio interview.

"I mean 'armed,' when you hear 'armed,' don’t you think of firearms? Here’s the questions I would have liked to ask. How many firearms were confiscated? How many shots were fired? I’m only aware of one and I’ll defend that law enforcement officer for taking that shot. It was a tragedy, OK? But I think there was only one."

In truth, police recovered a dozen guns and thousands of rounds of ammunition from seven people who were arrested over their involvement in the Jan. 6 riot that left at least five people dead, according to NBC News.

3. Denying climate change.

"I don't know about you guys, but I think climate change is — as Lord Monckton said — bullshit," Johnson said in June, mouthing the expletive while referring to British climate change skeptic Lord Christopher Monckton. "By the way, it is."

[...]

4. Calling Social Security a 'Ponzi scheme.'

"These things are Ponzi schemes; the money isn’t there," Johnson told a Milwaukee radio show in November. "You invest it — whether it’s Social Security or whatever — and the federal government spends it, and they just put in place another government bond. There isn’t money. There aren’t assets backing up these trust funds.”

[...]

5. Questioning 'the big push' to get everyone vaccinated for coronavirus.

In an April interview with a conservative talk radio host, Johnson said he saw “no reason to be pushing vaccines on people,” arguing that their distribution should be “limited” to those most vulnerable to coronavirus.

“If you have a vaccine, quite honestly, what do you care if your neighbor has one or not?” he asked.

But Johnson had a different message six months earlier when he accused then-Sen. Kamala Harris of casting doubts on vaccines. Harris had said in a vice-presidential debate that she would not trust the safety and effectiveness of a COVID-19 vaccine solely on the word of then-President Donald Trump.

"That'd be a terrible thing if we have an effective vaccine and a safe one, and that's the only one we'll release," Johnson said in November 2020. "But if you are out there undermining that possibility, that will cause people's deaths."

6. Defending his work to secure tax breaks for his billionaire campaign backers.

“As someone who spent 31 years building a successful manufacturing company in Wisconsin, I have long said that our tax system needs to be simplified and rationalized,” Johnson said in August.

[...]

According to Pro Publica, Johnson lobbied then-President Donald Trump to sweeten the tax break for companies known as pass-throughs in Trump's 2017 tax cut bill.

The change resulted in $79 million in tax savings in 2018 for two of Johnson's biggest donors — Richard and Elizabeth Uihlein, owners of packaging giant Uline in Pleasant Prairie, and Diane Hendricks, head of ABC Supply in Beloit.

7. Accusing Anthony Fauci of 'overhyping' COVID-19 and AIDS.

"Fauci did the exact same thing with AIDS," Johnson said of the president's chief medical adviser's statements on COVID's omicron variant in early December. "He overhyped it. He created all kinds of fear, saying it could affect the entire population when it couldn't. He's using the exact same playbook with COVID, ignoring therapy, pushing a vaccine."

[...]

8. Claiming the top 1% are paying their 'fair share.'

"The top 1% owns about 20% of the nation's assets," the multimillionaire businessman told a truck driver during an October town hall. "But they pay 40% of the nation's income tax. I mean, at some point in time, we got to go, 'Well, it's probably pretty close to a fair share.' So I'm not into punitive taxation, I'm into fair."

In June, Pro Publica reported that a review of Internal Revenue Service records showed the richest 25 people in the country paid a true tax rate of just 3.4%. The online publication also said many billionaires were paying at a lower rate than the average person making $45,000.

9. Peddling Listerine as treatment for COVID-19.

"Standard gargle, mouthwash, has been proven to kill the coronavirus," Johnson said at a town hall earlier this month. "If you get it, you may reduce viral replication. Why not try all these things?”

[...]

In the past, he has touted the use of the antiparasitic drug ivermectin, questioned the use of ventilators for COVID patients, suggested vaccinated Americans could be perpetuating the coronavirus pandemic and claimed distributing vaccines during a pandemic "could be dangerous."

10. Asserting that he never felt threatened by rioters on Jan. 6.

"Even though those thousands of people that were marching to the Capitol were trying to pressure people like me to vote the way they wanted me to vote, I knew those were people that love this country, that truly respect law enforcement, would never do anything to break the law, and so I wasn't concerned,” Johnson told conservative talk show host Joe Pags in March.

But Johnson said he might have felt differently if the march had been led by Black Lives Matter.

"Now, had the tables been turned — Joe, this could get me in trouble — had the tables been turned, and President Trump won the election and those were tens of thousands of Black Lives Matter and Antifa protesters, I might have been a little concerned," Johnson concluded.

A week later, the Wisconsin senator said there was "no violence" on the Senate side of the U.S. Capitol during the insurrection.

[...]

 
Hintz Congratulates New Assembly Democratic Leaders Neubauer and Haywood PDF Print E-mail
Elections, Elected Officials, Political Parties
Written by Gordon Hintz Press, Rep. 54th Assembly District   
Thursday, 23 December 2021 07:32

gordon_hintzFormer leader confident they will be successful in fighting for policies that truly serve Wisconsin’s working families.


MADISON - Rep. Gordon Hintz (D-Oshkosh) released the following statement congratulating Assembly Democratic Leader-Elect Greta Neubauer and Assistant Leader-Elect Kalan Haywood:

“I want to congratulate Assembly Democratic Leader-Elect Greta Neubauer and Assistant Leader-Elect Kalan Haywood. I look forward to working with both of them to push for Democratic values and priorities in the State Assembly.

greta-neubauer“As our next Leader, Rep. Neubauer will bring fresh energy, policy experience, unmatched organizing skill, and a clear vision for the Assembly Democratic Caucus. With Rep. Neubauer as leader, I am confident Assembly Democrats will remain strong and continue to be united in pushing back against increasing Republican extremism and attacks on our democracy while also offering a positive Democratic vision for Wisconsin.

kalan-haywood“Rep. Haywood will help build our caucus into the future as our next Assistant Leader. His fresh perspective and commitment to uplifting individual caucus voices is more important now than ever. The stakes are incredibly high in Wisconsin, and we know Assembly Democrats are strongest when we work together.

“With Rep. Neubauer and Rep. Haywood at the helm, I am confident that Assembly Democrats will be successful in fighting for policies that truly serve Wisconsin’s working families.”

Last Updated on Friday, 24 December 2021 17:46
 
Neubauer Elected Assembly Democratic Leader PDF Print E-mail
Elections, Elected Officials, Political Parties
Written by Neubauer Press   
Thursday, 23 December 2021 07:21

greta-neubauerMADISON – Wisconsin State Representative Greta Neubauer (D-Racine) released the following statement following her election as Assembly Democratic Leader:

“First and foremost, I would like to thank Rep. Hintz and Rep. Hesselbein again for their service to our caucus and to the people of Wisconsin. Their leadership over the past four years has been invaluable, and I look forward to continuing the hard work of making Wisconsin a place where we all can thrive.

“As Assembly Democratic Leader, I will work to build the relationships, the strategy, and the infrastructure to move our shared values and priorities forward. I will make tough decisions and push back when necessary. And I will do everything in my power to provide more opportunities for every member to lead on the issues they are most passionate about.

“I am extremely grateful for the support I have received from my colleagues today and for their vote of confidence. I look forward to continuing our work to build a more equitable and resilient Wisconsin.”

Last Updated on Friday, 24 December 2021 17:30
 
Rep. Lisa Subeck Endorses Alex Lasry PDF Print E-mail
Elections, Elected Officials, Political Parties
Written by Alex Lasry Press   
Wednesday, 15 December 2021 17:54

alex-lasry-senateMadison - Representative Lisa Subeck, today announced her endorsement of Alex Lasry to be Wisconsin’s next U.S. Senator.

“Alex Lasry is the right choice to represent Wisconsinites in the U.S. Senate,” said Rep. Subeck. “The people of Wisconsin are tired of all the political fighting in Washington and are ready for a Senator that will go to Congress and get things done to improve their lives. Through his work with the Bucks, Alex has a proven record of doing just that.”

lisa-subeck“Alex is building the strong statewide campaign that it will take to beat Ron Johnson next fall,'' continued Rep. Subeck. “I’m proud to be a part of the team that is going to help protect the Democratic Majority in the Senate, and I can’t wait to get to work.”

“During her time in the State Assembly on the Madison City Council, Rep. Subeck has been a tireless advocate for the people of Madison and Wisconsin,” said Alex Lasry. “I’m honored to have her support, and I look forward to working with her to win this seat and to deliver for people across our state.”

Rep. Subeck joins a growing list of endorsements for Lasry, including fellow Madison-area State Representative Shelia Stubbs and several Wisconsin unions including Teamsters Joint Council 39, IBEW Local 494, Operating Engineers Local 139, IATSE Local 18, and the Wisconsin Pipe Trades Association.

The Democratic Primary Election for the United States Senate will be held Tuesday, August 9th, 2022. For more information about Alex Lasry’s campaign, visit www.alexlasry.com.

 
Democrats’ Successes for Wisconsin PDF Print E-mail
Elections, Elected Officials, Political Parties
Written by WisDems Press   
Monday, 13 December 2021 16:39

brown-county-exec-commWe won’t stop until every single Wisconsin voter knows how the Democratic Party is delivering for them, say Democrats in Cap Times Op-ed.

Read more...
 
Hintz to Step Down as Assembly Democratic Leader PDF Print E-mail
Elections, Elected Officials, Political Parties
Written by Gordon Hintz Press, Rep. 54th Assembly District   
Monday, 13 December 2021 16:13

gordon-hintz-steps downOshkosh lawmaker to relinquish leadership role after four years, wants to continue to serve in Assembly.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 15 December 2021 16:28
Read more...
 
Governor Distributes Funds to Nearly 20k Wisconsin Farmers PDF Print E-mail
Elections, Elected Officials, Political Parties
Written by WisDems Press   
Friday, 10 December 2021 10:33

wisc-dairy-farmMore Wisconsin farmers are tapping into a state support program meant to offset the negative effects of the coronavirus pandemic.


MADISON, Wis. -- Agriculture producers across the state are getting a bountiful harvest this winter - thanks to Governor Evers, almost 20,000 farmers have been approved to receive thousands of dollars in state COVID aid, helping producers, especially our dairy industry, moo-ve past this pandemic.

The agricultural industry is a cornerstone of our state’s economy - contributing nearly $105 billion annually and supporting more than 435,000 jobs. That’s why Governor Evers has made supporting farmers a priority - so far, he’s allocated $100 million through the Wisconsin Farm Support program. This latest crop of funding will ensure the agricultural industry can build back stronger than before.

Read more about Gov. Evers’ Wisconsin Farm Support program below.

WPR: Nearly 20K Wisconsin farms will receive state COVID-19 aid

More Wisconsin farmers are tapping into a state support program meant to offset the negative effects of the coronavirus pandemic.

[...]

Gov. Tony Evers first created the program using federal COVID-19 recovery funds in 2020 to provide direct payments to farmers. Last year, the state awarded $3,500 to just over 15,000 farmers who made between $10,000 and $5 million in gross income the previous year.

Randy Romanski, secretary of the state Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection, said almost 20,000 people have so far been approved for the program. Farmers who had problems with their application have until 4:30 p.m. on Friday to resolve them with the Department of Revenue before payments are made.

Romanski said the $50 million available for the program will be evenly split among approved applicants, with farmers currently expected to receive around $2,500. The state will begin issuing payments on Dec. 17.

While officials don’t know for sure why more farmers applied for the program this year, Romanski said he believes the early announcement from Evers about the availability of funds and the Department of Revenue sending out letters to all eligible farmers helped increase awareness about the availability of funding.

"There was an understanding of how quick and easy it was to fill out. And someone who may not have applied last time may know a friend, neighbor, relative that applied and they decided to get in this time," he said.

[...]

 
Gov. Tony Evers Is Doing What's Best for Our Kids and Investing in Schools PDF Print E-mail
Elections, Elected Officials, Political Parties
Written by WisDems Press   
Friday, 03 December 2021 16:09

tony-evers-win-gettyimagesMADISON, Wis. -- Yesterday, during stops in Milwaukee, Chilton, Stevens Point, and Holmen, Gov. Tony Evers announced that he has delivered on his promise to invest $110 million in federal funds to Wisconsin’s school districts.

That’s a $133.72 increase in per pupil funding delivered directly to every single school district in Wisconsin. This funding will allow schools to hire additional educators and staff, provide more educational and extracurricular opportunities, invest in mental health supports, buy art supplies or computers, or keep the lights on — whatever each school needs to do what’s best for our kids.

For Gov. Evers, a strong education system is the key foundation for a vibrant Wisconsin. A former science teacher, principal, district superintendent, and Superintendent of Public Instruction, Gov. Evers has long said that what’s best for our kids is what’s best for our state. 

Gov. Evers’ student-first education policies stand in stark contrast to Scott Walker and Rebecca Kleefisch’s radical cuts to education. During his first term, Gov. Evers has increased funding for public schools, stood with teachers and students throughout the pandemic while Republican legislators sat out of session for 300 days, and supported Wisconsin’s vibrant universities and technical colleges.

Gov. Evers continues to clean up the previous administration’s neglect of Wisconsin public schools. In 2011, Walker and Kleefisch passed a budget that cut public education funding by $800 million, and in 2015, their budget failed to increase K-12 funding and slashed the University of Wisconsin’s funding by $250 million. Walker and Kleefisch also supported legislation that attacked educators and led to a historic teacher shortage. 

See below for a roundup of coverage on Gov. Evers delivering on his promises. 

Channel 3000: Evers follows through on promise to give Wisconsin schools $110 million in federal aid

WISN: Gov. Tony Evers delivers $110M in COVID-19 funds to Wisconsin schools

Fox 6: Wisconsin invests $110M in kids, schools via federal COVID relief funds

TMJ4: Gov. Evers announces $110 million in additional education spending

CBS 58: Gov. Evers announces $110 million of federal coronavirus relief funds will go to Wisconsin schools

WKBT: Evers announces $110 million education investment

WKBT: Watch: Gov. Evers talks education in Holmen

WLUK: Evers directs $110 million in COVID relief to schools

WFRV: Gov. Evers visits Chilton school, touts $110M headed to schools statewide

WMTV: Over $100 million in COVID-19 funds going to state schools

WKOW: Gov. Evers announces $110 million in new funding for Wisconsin schools

WPR: Gov. Evers announces $110M in additional funding for schools

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Gov. Tony Evers directs $110 million in pandemic relief funds to Wisconsin school districts, with $9 million going to MPS alone

Wisconsin Examiner: Gov. Evers announces $110 million for Wisconsin schools

Tomahawk Leader: Evers directs federal coronavirus relief funding to state schools; Tomahawk to receive $152,000.00

Wisconsin State Journal: Madison School District to receive more than $3.5 million in federal funds

Last Updated on Saturday, 04 December 2021 16:25
 
Governor Evers Vetoes Republicans’ Rigged Maps PDF Print E-mail
Elections, Elected Officials, Political Parties
Written by WisDems Press   
Thursday, 18 November 2021 10:59

vote-47MADISON, Wis. -- Today, Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers vetoed the GOP’s partisan redistricting plan, defending our democracy and right to vote in a free and fair election. Wisconsin’s GOP-controlled legislature passed rigged maps, in an attempt to cement their legislative majorities for another decade.

Wisconsinites overwhelmingly support nonpartisan redistricting. Over the last several years, 55 Wisconsin counties, representing nearly 83 percent of Wisconsin residents, have either held referendum votes or have had resolutions approved by a county board supporting nonpartisan redistricting.

Democratic Party of Wisconsin Chair Ben Wikler released the following statement:

“With Governor Evers’s veto, the Republican attempt to re-gerrymander our state and thwart our democracy has slammed into a brick wall. Governor Tony Evers has demonstrated once more that he is the last line of defense against anti-democratic attacks. Republican legislators in Wisconsin have lost sight of how a democracy works — voters are supposed to choose their elected officials, not the other way around. The process of drawing legislative maps should be fair, transparent, and nonpartisan, but as we’ve seen, Republicans will stop at nothing to hold onto power.

“We’re still paying the price for last decade’s rigged Republican maps, which were drawn behind closed doors by GOP politicians without any public input. Ever since the people of Wisconsin elected Governor Eversin 2018, Republican legislators have used their gerrymandered majorities to block and obstruct the people’s agenda — and at times have not even shown up to their jobs as legislators.

“A decade of life in Wisconsin under Republican gerrymandering has made clear that it’s time that Wisconsin receives the fair maps it deserves. Gov. Evers vetoed these bills because he is committed to fair maps that are crafted transparently — not maps created by political insiders and lobbyists that allow Republicans to maintain their gerrymandered grip on Wisconsin.”

 
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