Iron County Progressive

 Republicans’ Vote Against Paying Wisconsin’s Service Members and Veterans

MADISON, Wis. — Despite adding nearly $8 trillion in debt under the Trump administration, Republicans in Congress have repeatedly voted against Democrats’ attempts to fund our government and to raise the debt ceiling as the country continues to recover from the pandemic made worse by Republican incompetence. Their decision to play partisan political games could send our recovering economy into a tailspin and have devastating implications for Wisconsin residents — and is an affront to the more than 1,000 military personnel and over 363,000 veterans who call Wisconsin home.

As House Republicans — including Wisconsin’s own Reps. Grothman, Gallagher, and Tiffany — voted against efforts to pay for spending lawmakers have already approved, the Department of Defense was forced to prepare for a shutdown that would leave around 1.3 million active-duty military personnel without pay

“Each and every day, our military personnel and their families serve our nation, protecting us from harm and showing what it means to sacrifice in the name of service. The GOP’s willingness to risk their paychecks and benefits by refusing to fund our government is a slap in the face to those who sacrifice so much for our country,” said WisDems Rapid Response Director Julia Hamelburg. “It’s time that Republicans in Congress put country over politics and ensure that our men and women in uniform get paid.”

 

Tax Paying Wisconsinites Blast Ron Johnson for Latest Tax Scandal

Madison, Wis. — Today, Democratic Party of Wisconsin Vice Chair Felesia Martin, Milwaukee business owner Becky Cooper, and Dr. John Perryman blasted Ron Johnson for paying virtually nothing in state income taxes in 2017 despite making a minimum of nearly half a million dollars that year. Johnson paid a mere $2,105, which is what a dual income family making $40,000 a year would pay in state income taxes.

See what the speakers had to say, in part, below and watch the full event here.

Vice Chair Felesia Martin: “What’s so outrageous is that so many middle class and everyday working Wisconsinites are working very hard, and they have to pay more in taxes than Senator Johnson. How is it fair that everyday working class citizens pay more money [in taxes] than one of the wealthiest individuals in the state of Wisconsin? Senator Johnson is not using his power to help everyday Wisconsinites, he is using it to make his donors richer and to game the system.”

Becky Cooper: “Johnson, who on top of his private income, gets a taxpayer funded salary as a senator and he doesn’t think he has the same responsibility to benefit the entire community like the rest of us. By avoiding paying his share of taxes and securing a tax cut for his wealthy donors, that puts the burden on the rest of us who are struggling to get by and seeing our communities suffer because others aren’t paying their fair share.”

Dr. John Perryman: “It was just mind blowing to see the minuscule amount of state taxes this millionaire Ron Johnson paid in 2017. I know he has issues with the public good but even for someone like him who has so much to pay so little is ridiculous. This is a man who is corrupting the system to help himself and the wealthy while leaving working families behind. It’s been a long 12 years of Senator Johnson cheating the system to benefit himself and his rich donors.”

 

 

Weekly News From Your Wisconsin Democratic Party Chair

 

 

 

 

Dear friends across Wisconsin, 

This week, some colleagues and I hit the road. We traveled to Chippewa Falls, Eau Claire, Merrill, Rhinelander, Wausau, the Oneida reservation, Green Bay, Milwaukee, and finally back to Madison. We met with rural county party chairs and members, held roundtable conversations with AAPI leaders, connected with elected officials and tribal leaders, held press conferences, visited the LGBTQ Caucus’s PrideTober booth, and enjoyed cheese curds and other dairy delicacies in five different Congressional Districts. We made sure the Democratic message was carried on television newscasts all over the state.  

Most of all, we listened.  

Here’s what we heard.  

We heard that Democrats are fired up to re-elect Governor Evers—and absolutely, positively ensure that Rebecca Kleefisch doesn’t win in 2022. We heard that folks love seeing Governor Evers as he travels around the state, and that there is real power in showing up.  

We heard that Ron Johnson is an embarrassing disaster as a senator. And at the same time, even though he’s simply terrible at his job, we shouldn’t underestimate him politically. We’ve got to fight all the way through the finish line.  

We heard that it’s critical for Democrats to communicate the great things our elected officials are doing, in the medium and with the messenger that will most resonate locally and with the particular community affected. Sometimes that’s a local weekly newspaper. Sometimes pictures speak louder than words. To find the right message, medium, and messenger, ask locally.  

We heard a great deal about the issues, work, leadership, and challenges in the Asian-American and Pacific Islander community—and, while celebrating the official formation of the WisDems AAPI Caucus this year, recommitted to working to build our political movement in deep partnership with AAPI Wisconsinites.  

We heard that Republicans, even though they’re in disarray at the statewide and national level, are mobilizing locally—particularly in school board races, including recalls, focused on the phantom menace that Republicans (deliberately) inaccurately call Critical Race Theory. In a moment when more honesty and clarity is needed to ensure that Wisconsin students understand the histories of each of the communities that make up our state, Republicans are trying to frighten, divide, and cover up. It’s all of our job to fight back.  

We heard that, even though Trump is out of the White House, Democrats across our state know that the menace of Trumpism—and Trump himself—are still very real. Nobody is taking the “off year” as a year off. The stakes are too high.  

 

 

 

 

 

Thanks so much to all of the great Wisconsin Democrats who welcomed me and our team throughout the state this week—and thanks to everyone committed to the fight for democracy in Wisconsin, and to making this a state that lifts everyone up, no matter where we live, no matter what we look like, no matter whether we’re new Wisconsinites or have lived here for generations.  

A trip like this can be exhausting. But at every stop, we found new reasons for hope. Let’s draw strength from the fact that none of us is in this fight alone.  

In solidarity,
Ben

 

FIGHT

 

Sham GOP Investigation into 2020 Election In Chaos; Gableman Admits He Doesn’t Understand How Elections Work

 

This week, the Wisconsin GOP legislature’s pick to “investigate” 2020’s election said he doesn’t understand how elections work. 

"Most people, myself included, do not have a comprehensive understanding or even any understanding of how elections work," he said. That’s a direct quote. 

If your new mechanic is raising up your car on the lift for an inspection and casually mentions that he doesn’t have a comprehensive understanding—or even any understanding—of how cars work, get your car out of there as fast as possible. 

Michael Gableman's ignorance surrounding elections—and inability to even send a simple email message that doesn't raise major security flags from IT departments, or issue a typo-free subpoena, or decide what documents he wants cities to send him—illustrates what a complete, ultra-partisan sham this GOP "investigation" is. 

Republicans’ attack on Wisconsin's transparent, legitimate, certified, recounted, confirmed 2020 election is about one thing: creating a pretext to undermine future elections. It's a ghastly waste of public money and time in order to supplicate to Trump, who lost. 

There's really just one way to answer the attack: we've got to fight hard to re-elect Governor Evers who believes in democracy and has demonstrated that he'll back that up with his veto pen. Gov. Evers is the last line of defense for our democracy. Let's ensure he's there for four more years.

 

Tax-paying Wisconsinites Blast Ron Johnson for Latest Tax Scandal

 

This week, Democratic Party of Wisconsin First Vice Chair Felesia Martin, Milwaukee business owner Becky Cooper, and Dr. John Perryman blasted Ron Johnson for paying virtually nothing in state income taxes in 2017, despite making nearly half a million dollars that year. Johnson paid a mere $2,105, which is what a dual income family making $40,000 a year would pay in state income taxes. Ron Johnson, by contrast, earned $180,000 as a senator and took in another $270,000 from the company set up for him by his father-in-law.

 

 

New York Times: Governor Tony Evers is a “Sea Wall for Fair Elections”

 

This week, the New York Times wrote about the stakes of Wisconsin’s 2022 gubernatorial election in a story that made clear why it’s critical to re-elect Tony Evers to protect our democracy.  

Wisconsin Republicans will stop at nothing to suppress our freedom to vote — using sham election “investigations” to justify draconian voter suppression bills and, potentially, overturn the results of a legitimate election. But their plot to steal future elections won’t work if Governor Evers is re-elected.  

Earlier this year, Gov. Evers vetoed six Republican-led voter suppression bills. Radical Rebecca Kleefisch has already said she would have signed these bills in an attempt to block eligible voters from the ballot box. Gov. Evers is the last line of defense against these egregious assaults on our democracy.

 

 

 

AFTW President and UW Students Condemn Rebecca Kleefisch’s Extreme Cuts to Education Funding

 

AFT-Wisconsin President Kim Kohlhaas and University of Wisconsin students responded to Rebecca Kleefisch’s radical record of cutting funds for college and technical education. As lieutenant governor, Kleefisch refused to support Wisconsin public schools. She proudly stood by her administration’s devastating budgets, including slashing $250 million from the UW System and $71.6 million from Wisconsin’s technical college system - 30 percent of their funding. 

 

 

Educational Organizing Opportunities with the Wisconsin Public Education Network

 

Wisconsin Public Education Network (WPEN) is a non-partisan group focused on supporting our public schools. With so many local school boards taking up discussions about critical race theory and other issues, WPEN is holding training sessions to support people with ideas and initiative to organize on the ground, specifically for Black, Indigenous and other people of color interested in running for school board.

 Sign up here! School Board Matters: How to run for school board with Megan Miller, Angela Lang and Jilly Gokalgandhi. 

October 20th from 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM

 

 

EMPOWER the Grassroots

 

 

 

 

Join Us to Protect Democracy: volunteer for our Voter Protection team!

 

Republicans are attacking our democracy. It’s up to us to fight back—with organizing.


Become a Poll Worker (Wisconsin residents only): Working the polls and helping your neighbors cast their ballots is the most direct way you can support voting rights in your community. And now more than ever, we need to ensure that our polling places are staffed by voting rights advocates who believe in small-d democracy. Poll worker is a paid position in Wisconsin, and open to all Wisconsin residents. Join our 30-minute Info Session to learn more about the responsibilities & qualifications to be a Poll Worker in Wisconsin and how you can get involved for 2022! Visit wisdems.org/pollworker to learn more!