Progressives have more influence in the Joe Biden’s Washington than we have had since the 1960s, but are we prepared to translate our outside power into the governing power we need to win bold reform? In this special edition of Battleground Wisconsin, we discuss how the progressive movement must evolve to meet our moment with two national organizing strategists, George Goehl, the Director of People’s Action and Bree Carlson, the Deputy Director of People’s Action.
We discuss the horrific vote by Senate Republicans to cancel the state health emergency and the mask mandate while also nixing COVID-19 relief. The panel welcomes State Senator Chris Larson to talk about Tuesday’s Senate vote and the policy atrocities taking place at the State Capital. Is there any rationale for the actions of the majority at all, or our we witnessing reckless disregard for human life? We close with a scouting report on President Biden’s new executive orders this week on climate and healthcare. Do they signal a bold new progressive direction for our national government?
We discuss the historic inaugural week of President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris and Biden’s flurry of executive orders and an exciting new immigration bill. We look behind the organizing that resulted in changes to the Wisconsin COVID vaccination plan to include teachers, grocery workers, meat packers, and prisoners at the top of the list. A new COVID strain is spreading as Wisconsin reopens schools and the state does nothing. We welcome Minocqua Brewing Company SuperPAC owner Kirk Bangstad to discuss their campaign against Sen. Ron Johnson and Rep. Tom Tiffany for supporting for overturning the 2020 presidential election. Wisconsin Examiner journalist, Isiah Holmes, joins us to discuss his excellent reporting on Wauwatosa Police targeting protestors. We close with Markasa Tucker from the African-American Roundtable to discuss the Milwaukee Common Council reversing course and approving a federal grant for more police officers. Listen Now – Episode #476 Download Mp3 Press Clips
We discuss President Trump’s latest impeachment, shocking new details of his failed insurrection, and the Wisconsin Republicans who are aiding and abetting the violent overthrow of American democracy. We welcome Citizen Action Climate & Equity Director Rafael Smith to discuss a groundbreaking opportunity to pass a large New Deal-style green jobs program (Jobs for Economic Recovery Act) in the first 100 days of the Biden Administration and how you can get involved in making it a reality. The legislation, which has major traction the Senate and House, will put millions of jobless Americans back to work, dramatically improve racial equity and expand opportunity for depressed rural areas. We also dig into Governor Evers’ State of the State speech and new fissures in the Republican state legislature that resulted in Senate Republicans splitting from the Assembly by cutting a deal with the Governor on COVID-19 relief. Listen Now – Episode #475 Download Mp3 Press Clips
Contact [email protected] to get involved in supporting the Jobs for Economic Recovery Act
Contact your U.S. Senate members in support of Jobs for Economic Recovery Act. Contact your U.S. House of Representative member in support of Jobs for Economic Recovery Act.
We give our reactions and initial analysis of the unprecedented Trump insurrection at Congress. What does it mean for American democracy? We dig into how the shocking events at the Capital lay bare our white supremacist society. Insurrectionists were largely allowed to enter and leave Congress with little resistance and few arrests after sowing chaos in their effort to execute a right-wing coup. We welcome Lauren Jacobs, the Executive Director of the Partnership for Working Families, to discuss the real power behind the insurrection and how the progressive movement’s response and commitment to multiracial organizing around our values of caring for everyone can be an anecdote to Trumpism. Listen Now – Episode #474 Download Mp3 Press Clips
We review Congress’ inadequate COVID relief bill that was immediately trolled by Trump, calling it a disgrace and demanding $2000 relief checks he has previously opposed. The Fox con has now cost the state $1.4 billion for nothing aside from a failing real estate project. We ask the question what could the state leaders have done with $1.4 billion to invest in the creation of new green jobs throughout the state. Guest panelist Rafael Smith discusses what needs to be in Gov. Evers’ next state budget to make real advancements in creating a green economy that addresses historic racial inequality and heads off a climate catastrophe. We close by welcoming In These Times magazine fellow Alice Herman to discuss her feature story about how the toll of COVID 19 on healthcare workers, and the lack of employer or government concern, is prompting many to take labor actions and to seek to form unions. Listen Now – Episode 473 Download Mp3 Press Clips
CONTACT Gov. Evers and tell him to fund Climate Action Plans and mandate our utilities offer “on-bill” financing for home energy improvement upgrades in his state budget.
We check in on the federal COVID-19 debate in Congress. After months of failure, are the nation’s lawmakers about to deliver meaningful relief? Claire presents new research quantifying the deep financial hardship the pandemic has inflicted on American families and why the failure of political leadership is so devastating. The Electoral College declared Joe Biden the winner this week as all legal options for the snake oil salesman-in-chief have now closed. That didn’t stop Sen. Ron Johnson from embarrassing himself this week with his sham hearing on the election. We talk about disturbing news that the International Law Enforcement Educators and Trainers Association emailed a document to thousands of law enforcement agencies comparing Black Lives Matter activists to terrorists. Also the City of Milwaukee Common Council is prepared to turn down federal money for more police officers.
TAKE ACTION! Contact Gov. Tony Evers and tell him to make sure a BadgerCare Public Option is included in his next State Budget.
Watch hilarious video of former IL Governor Rod Blagojevich wishing Wisconsin State Rep. John Nygren well as he abruptly leaves the Wisconsin Legislature to lobby for the health insurance industry. Video was authorized and paid for by the one and only Scot Ross.
We review a surreal week that saw Texas and 17 states sue Wisconsin and other states where Trump lost narrowly to overturn the election. In Wisconsin, Rep. Tussler, the chairman of the Assembly Elections committee, is holding a sham hearing Friday, and has already said he is willing to defy the will of the voters. We talk about the issues the do-nothing-good Wisconsin Legislature and US Senate are ignoring, especially COVID 19 , and laud Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes’ broad Climate Task Force plan which was released this Wednesday. Will its provisions make it into Governor Evers’ state budget? Finally, we welcome Shawn Phetteplace, Wisconsin State Manager of the Main Street Alliance, to discuss the budget priorities of small business owners. Listen Now – Episode #471 Download Mp3 Press Clips
Call Rep. Ron Tussler at (608) 266-5831 and tell him to stop promoting conspiracy theories about our election and trying to overturn the will of Wisconsin voters. Instead the Legislature should be focusing on COVID-19 relief and helping address the economic and health challenges facing people across Wisconsin. You can also email at: [email protected]
We discuss the adolescent and divisive COVID-19 legislation introduced by Robin Vos and Assembly Republicans that cuts funding for school districts and fails to address the historic pandemic bludgeoning Wisconsin families. We review Trump’s illegitimate lawsuit which seeks to change the rules of the game after the election and throw out hundreds of thousands of legal ballots in Milwaukee and Dane County. We kick off the State Budget fight that commences with Governor Tony Evers’ budget that he must present early next year. We discuss our top budget priorities, including a BadgerCare Public Option, Pharma Reform, and Green New Deal initiatives, and encourage our listeners to contact the Governor. Become a Citizen Action member and attend our Annual membership meeting this Saturday, December 5th, 10am – Noon. Episode #470 Download Mp3 Press Clips
On a special Thanksgiving edition of Battleground Wisconsin we dig into the question of how Joe Biden can govern effectively in the face of a Republican Party whose base is supercharged and will do everything to undermine his administration. First we talk with Rick Perlstein, the author of 4 major books on the rise of the radical right, including the recently released Reaganland, about the prospects for passing progressive reform when 73 million American believe a dangerous and counterfactual ideology. Next, John Nichols joins the conversation to discuss what we can learn about Biden’s strategy from his early cabinet picks. Is this a group that can move progressive policy on the pandemic, economic reconstruction, structural racism, and the climate threat, or is it more of the same from establishment Democrats? Listen Episode #469 Download Mp3