Barack Obama’s message of hope got knocked about, battered by the hard realities of war – two of them, started by another president – and the most severe economic troubles since the Great Depression.
Seizing on that, Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan have asked: Are you better off than you were four years ago? Interesting that the Greedy Old Party isn’t asking if America as a nation is better off.
GOP Senate candidate Todd Akin of Missouri created a firestorm when he told a St. Louis reporter that women generally can’t conceive as a result of “legitimate rape.” According to information the learned congressman claims to have gleaned from doctors, women’s reproductive systems shut down automatically from the trauma.
GOP representatives in the U.S. House have now voted 31 times either to dismantle or hobble President Barack Obama’s health care reform act – known variously as Obamacare or the Affordable Care Act. Those votes in the House have been symbolic, since the Democrat-controlled U.S. Senate has made it clear that any efforts to alter the legislation will halt at the door of its chamber. Thus the time spent on those votes is a waste of energy that would be better spent on developing policies to stimulate the lagging economy.
GOP House members hope to gain political traction by their opposition to Obamacare. They’ve focused enormous efforts on attempts to brand the bill as “socialized medicine.” Never mind that Obamacare is not remotely socialized anything. In fact, it delivers 30 million new customers to the private insurance industry.
The Democratic Party of Wisconsin, working with volunteers from groups such as We Are Wisconsin and We Are One, put together the most aggressive and effective get-out-the-vote effort possible in our recent gubernatorial recall election. Tom Barrett worked harder and showed more passion and command than ever before in his distinguished career of public service. He did not by any stretch blow this race. He and his backers should be proud of his performance.
High-ranking officials of the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee consider their campus to be a model of LGBT inclusivity.
But UWM admission officials denied in-state tuition to a man whose husband – the couple was legally married in New York – has lived in the state for more than a year. The first rejection letter the couple received gave the real reason why: Same-sex marriage and its equivalent are illegal in Wisconsin.
The people of Aurora, Colo., had just begun returning to normalcy after the July 20 massacre at a cinema there when Milwaukeeans were hit with the news that a hate attack on a Sikh temple in Oak Creek had left six worshippers near the Texas A&M University campus, killing two and wounding four before he was gunned down by police.
According to the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, the Texas case was the 12th mass shooting in the nation since the beginning of June. FBI statistics show guns are used in 67 percent of all homicides.
For the first time since 1990, the International AIDS Conference 2012 will be held on American soil. This is a major development.
Hosting the conference helps put the United States back into the mainstream international scientific community. The nation is increasingly becoming a scientific backwater. We are the only industrialized country on Earth where evolution and global warming are heavily doubted and science-based sex education is demonized. The return of this internationally watched and esteemed conference lends stature to our scientific community.
Gov. Scott walker has received an obscene amount of money from donors in the fossil fuel, manufacturing and home-building industries. In return, he has represented their interests with unflinching determination, guiding their agenda – as articulated by the American Legislative Exchange Council – verbatim through the Legislature without debate.
On June 5, voters in Wisconsin will have an unusual opportunity to decide whether this agenda has benefitted the state.
Tommy Thompson’s U.S. Senate campaign recently reminded us how far behind the curve he really is.
Senior political adviser Brian Nemoir disseminated a tweet from the Thompson campaign linking to a video showing Democratic rival Tammy Baldwin dancing at a 2010 Pride event. “Clearly, there’s no one better positioned to talk ‘heartland values’ than Tammy,” Nemoir wrote in an email, implying that being gay is inconsistent with having values.
Following the U.S. Census, the party in control of each state legislature gets to redraw the boundaries of its political districts, ostensibly to reflect population changes. The party so empowered inevitably uses the opportunity to design a map shamelessly serving its advantage.
In Wisconsin, the reigning GOP leadership used the occasion of the 2010 Census to implement a number of controversial maneuvers, including eliminating the former 22nd Assembly District. Among other things, Republicans folded the district’s white, upscale community of Shorewood into the 10th Assembly District’s inner-city boundaries, creating a super-majority Democratic district that politically unites two diverse populations.
We applaud the U.S. Supreme Court for striking down key elements of Arizona’s draconian, unapologetically racist immigration bill, dubbed the “Show Me Your Papers” law. Senate Bill 1070 has become a cause célèbre among the Tea Party crowd and other Americans who are terrified over the inevitable loss of the nation’s white majority status. The court’s ruling takes some, though not all, of the wind out of their sails.
A milestone in the battle for LGBT equality was quietly reached late last month.
On April 24, Brian Sims, a 33-year-old gay Philadelphia lawyer, won a Democratic state House primary. Since there is no Republican contender in his Democratic district, his victory put Sims on an inevitable path to becoming Pennsylvania’s first out lawmaker.