Citizen Action Weekend E Newsletter; Friday, April 7th
Friday, April 7th
Grassroots Democracy Won the Supreme Court Race.
By: Robet Kraig, Executive Director
This week, Janet Protesiewicz won the most pivotal State Supreme Court election in Wisconsin history! But the real winner is democracy in Wisconsin.
Make no mistake a growing grassroots progressive movement made this victory over right-wing extremism possible. And it is a strong and bolder progressive movement that is required to take the next step in Wisconsin.
That is why I am excited to announce the NEW 2024 Battleground Fund to recruit and train progressive candidates in 2023 to run for local and state office in 2024, and then help them get elected. I am asking for you to donate to this fund so we can win in 2024 and beyond.
But we can’t stop here. The 2024 election in Wisconsin will determine whether Governor Evers has a democratically elected Legislature, and with Presidential, Senate, and Congressional contests on the ballot Wisconsin could determine the future of American democracy.
As Executive Director, I want to personally thank every Citizen Action member who donated money to our 2 Supreme Court Action Fund. Thanks to you we raised over $30,000 in small donations from over 1100 individuals. These resources helped fuel our grassroots spring election program where Citizen Action members and organizers had deep conversations with infrequent voters who often sit out Spring elections.
Your donations to our program helped us start our conversations with voters sooner, magnifying its impact and inoculating voters against the billionaire-funded toxic propaganda jamming the airwaves! Small dollar contributions are the antiseptic and essence of a high functioning democracy that meets the huge challenges we face: creating fair legislative maps, restoring women’s abortion rights, addressing the climate crisis, reversing economic and racial inequality, and curbing skyrocketing health care costs.
But we cannot win these battles unless we win in 2024. Citizen Action’s new 2024 Battleground Fund will help us recruit and train the diverse and progressive candidates that can win local and state elections. Every dollar raised will go directly to supporting this mission. We are asking you to make a donation tonight to launch our fight to win in 2024.
Throughout the rest of 2023 Citizen Action’s Movement Politics program will recruit and train a diverse cadre of progressive leaders throughout Wisconsin to make 2024 the most successful election year in our organization’s 40 year history. We need your help with a donation to make it possible. Thank you.
Top Citizen Action door canvass volunteer attends Milwaukee Bucks vs. Chicago Bulls game Wednesday night.
Citizen Action Northwest Organizing Co-op member Julia Bennker from Eau Claire attended the Milwaukee Bucks vs. Chicago Bulls basketball game with her father as a top volunteer door canvasser in the Spring Election. Julia’s favorite player is Bobby Portis and Bobby had a huge night leading the Bucks to a win and clinching home court advantage throughout the upcoming playoffs.
Citizen Action’s top volunteer door canvasser was actually Renee Gasch from Green Bay. However, Renee was headed out on a vacation before the game and was kind enough to pass the 2 tickets on to the 2nd highest door knocker, who was Julia.
Huge thanks to Citizen Action president, Mark Thomsen, and the law firm Gingras, Thomsen and Wachs, who generously donated the amazing 3rd row seats!
State Budget Public Hearing in Waukesha: The Election May Be Over—But We’re Just Getting Started!
On Tuesday, the people of Wisconsin elected Janet Protasiewicz to the state Supreme Court. On Wednesday, at seven a.m., Citizen Action members got right back to work. They headed to the Waukesha Expo Center to testify at the Joint Finance Committee Hearings and ask our legislature to guarantee healthcare access for all.
Missy Zombor, who won her own election on Tuesday night, spoke at a Citizen Action News Conference held before the hearing. A Citizen Action Movement Politics Academy graduate, Missy will now serve on the Milwaukee School Board. She shared her healthcare story, talking about what it was like caring for patients in her job at a hospital–while knowing she herself couldn’t afford to get sick.
Expanding BadgerCare, Wisconsin’s Medicaid program, so that care workers and other low-wage workers qualify, is the only way to guarantee healthcare coverage for all. Yet the Republican Legislature has refused to accept federal funding to expand BadgerCare for over a decade.
Missy joined State Sen. Chris Larson, Main Street Alliance’s Becky Cooper, Mary Jo Baisch, RN, PhD (the Former Chairperson of the Wisconsin Public Health Council) and Citizen Action Executive Director Dr. Robert Kraig to advocate for healthcare for BadgerCare Expansion.
Following the news conference, Citizen Action members testified before members of the Joint Finance Committee. They shared personal stories and made persuasive arguments in support of expanding BadgerCare. Citizen Action member Dr. Lynn Carey was quoted in The Wisconsin Examiner’s story about the Joint Finance Committee’s Waukesha Hearing. In her testimony, she urged the Joint Finance Committee to follow the example of North Carolina’s Republican Legislature. They expanded their Medicaid program just last month, making them the 40th state to do so.
Attend a Joint finance Committee State Budget Public Hearing
Join us at an upcoming JFC state budget public hearings:
- Eau Claire JFC; Tuesday, April 11th
- Wis Dells JFC; Wednesday, April 12th
- Minocqua JFC: Wednesday, April 26th
Citizen Action Driftless Organizing Co-Op Update
Greetings from the Driftless Co-Op!
WOW! What an amazing spring election. All but 1 of our endorsed candidates won their elections!
Congratulations to Citizen Action Driftless Region endorsed candidates:
- Trevor Sprague and Jeff Jackson – La Crosse School Board
- Tamra Dickinson – La Crosse City Council
- Khadijah Islam – Holmen School Board
Khadijah Islam paved the way for a more diverse school board in Holmen, WI. She is the first person of color and the youngest person to win a seat on the school board. She is highly qualified and was the only candidate to get out and meet people at the doors. She knocked over 700 doors by herself. She did win one of 4 seats but only by 7 votes. Khadija said “I knew the battle I was up against and that is why I spent so much time getting out and engaging with the community. I do some of my best work when people underestimate me and I promise to give my best these next two years.”
Thank you to all our volunteers that came out to canvass or phone bank for our endorsed candidates. The doors we did in Holmen most certainly helped make the Holmen School Board more diverse and representative of our community.
Our Spring Volunteers: Mike Lemmon, Kathy Allen, Emy Monroe, Tina Tryggestad, David Pierce, Indiana Hauser, Katherine Kennedy, Abbey Kjorlien, Rachael Culli, Lori Toso, and Janette Dean.
(Caption: Driftless Region Co-Op Organizer Kristie Tweed with Allison Islam (Khadija’s Mom), Khadijah Islam, and CAW volunteer Indiana Hauser)
Thank you and please feel free to reach out to me! Kristie Tweed, Driftless Region Co-Op Organizer; 608-317-1331; [email protected]
Protest for Affordable Energy, Thursday, April 13th, 4:30pm, MKE
Please join Citizen Action North Side Rising Organizing Cooperative as we bring awareness to thousands of households whose electricity will be shut off due to the Winter Moratorium ending on April 15th. Also
We will also speak out against the outrageous 11% rate increase We Energies has imposed and how it has affected underserved communities in Milwaukee.
For more information on how to get involved please contact Keviea Guide Energy Burden Organizer: [email protected] or call 414-841-3839
Citizen Action in the News
Citizen Action was quoted in The Nation Magazine’s story on the Wisconsin Supreme Court victory. Read the story here.
Citizen Action’s Robert Kraig discusses the implications of the smashing Wisconsin Supreme Court win, and the election of a progressive mayor in Chicago, on The Earl Ingram Show.
Listen to the full hour here.
Citizen Action members and organizers were out in force at the first Joint Finance Committee public hearing in Waukesha on Wednesday. Read coverage in Wisconsin Health News.
Citizen Action’s Robert Kraig was on The Jeff Santos Show on election day to preview the Wisconsin Supreme Court race. Watch it here (starts at 1 hour 6 minute mark on the video)
Listen to “Democracy wins” Battleground Wisconsin
We debrief the smashing victory for democracy in the pivotal Wisconsin Supreme Court race, the most important election in the U.S. of 2023. The resulting shift in the Supreme Court presents progressives in Wisconsin with significant organizing opportunities, including recruiting, training, and electing a new generation of reform leaders. Robert updates us on Congressman Bryan Steil’s attempted intervention into the prosecution of Donald Trump by the New York City District Attorney. Has Steil joined the MAGA wing of the GOP? Robert tells us about a new study finding 40% of Milwaukeans work in low paying jobs that fail to meet their basic needs. And finally, what does the back and forth over Senator-elect Dan Knodl’s statement of openness during the campaign to impeach Janet Protasiewicz say about the norms of the new GOP supermajority in the State Senate. Is any state official safe from retribution at the hands of the anti-Democratic supermajority?
Listen to the show
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