We discuss President Trump’s disturbing pronouncement that the 2020 election should be delayed because mail-in ballots will make it inaccurate and fraudulent. Trump’s statement comes on the heels of a cratering economy and complete absence of Republican leadership on extending desperately needed COVID relief. We celebrate the extension of the moratorium on utility shutoffs last week and thank the leadership of Citizen Action’s new North Side Rising organizing co-op. We welcome progressive State Assembly candidates Kristina Shelton and Josefine Jaynes to discuss their August 11th primary elections.
The panel digs into the uncontrolled spread of COVID-19 in Wisconsin, now one of the worst 19 states in the country in containing the virus. How bad is it? What is the State Legislature, the Evers Administration, and local governments doing about it? As the federal cut-off of pandemic unemployment benefits looms, the panel discusses dissension in the ranks of the GOP, and the likely inadequate proposal they will make to the Democrats. We also look at the immense economic impact being inflicted on working Americans, and the disproportionate impact on communities of color. Will right-wing conservatives in The Senate and the White House get their act together, or will they unleash a historic wave of utility cut offs, hunger, evictions, and foreclosures? Listen Now – Episode #452 Download MP3 Press Clips
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to surge, and Wisconsin state government is at a standstill, Wisconsin municipalities are stepping up with new mask ordinances. Citizen Action holds news events around the state to call attention to the damage inaction in Washington is doing to the economic well being of working families. Without urgent action by the middle of next week, the unemployed will be cut-off of enhanced unemployment assistance, and we are already facing a wave of utility cut-offs, evictions, and foreclosures. As corporate leaders and their political puppets demand the reopening of schools, we welcome Ben Ward from the MTEA (the Milwaukee teacher’s union) to discuss whether it is even possible to have in-person classed safely when the pandemic continues to rage. We also talk with Voces de la Frontera’s Christine Neumann-Ortiz and Mario Ramirez about their follow up meeting with the Wisconsin Department of Health Services concerning the outrageous decision to withhold the COVID-19 infection numbers of businesses.
We discuss the latest Wisconsin Supreme court ruling upholding most of the Lame Duck power grab. The panel than moves to the deadly Wisconsin COVID-19 surge, and the movement towards mask mandates at the local level. Will Governor Evers pursue a state mask order? We tee-off on the troubling decision of the Wisconsin Department Health to withhold the names of businesses with multiple COVID-19 cases. Are they caving to Republican corporate interests? On a more positive note, we look at the bold New Deal-style jobs initiatives highlighted by U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin on a statewide townhall hosted by Citizen Action. Could it be used to protect family incomes, and jump start a green climate transition that also dramatically reduced racial inequality? We also discuss the looming July 25th cut-off of enhanced unemployment benefits, which would leave the unemployed and work-share participants high and dry. We close with an analysis of the just announced Biden-Sanders platform comprises aimed at party unification. Does it signal a new progressive-moderate alliance within the Democratic Party? Listen Now – Episode #450 Download MP3 Press Clips
The panel digs into the racist federal appeals court ruling restricting Wisconsin early voting, and risking a dangerous replay of the infamous pandemic primary. Citizen Action is a lead plaintiff in the case. We discuss a new report co-released by Citizen Action of Wisconsin on how 8 Wisconsin billionaires have made an economic killing from the pandemic. The pandemic continues to accelerate, confounding Donald Trump and the GOP by refusing to go away on its own. We point out some of the hotspots and controversies around the Badger State. We look at the rising pressure for Congress and the President to extend coronavirus economic relief, and to make bold new investments in publicly-subsidized jobs and a green transition. We report back on a major news event Citizen Action led in La Crosse this week to put pressure on the feds to act. Finally, we look at the latest Wisconsin racial justice protest developments, and unveil the latest round of Citizen Action legislative endorsements. Listen Now – Episode #449 Download MP3 Press Clips
We discuss the BLM movement that continues full steam ahead. We process the political response to the events in Madison this week, the latest outrageous statements by Supreme Court Chief Justice Patience Roggensack, and right-wing politicians and media outlets. We question whether any elected leaders are proposing the necessary structural reforms to move the ball on racial equity, as Wisconsin is a national leader on many major indicators of racial inequality. We also talk about how the COVID-19 pandemic spinning out of control in the south and west, and some disturbing indicators in Wisconsin. We close with a review of the new MU Law poll showing a growing lead for Biden, and vast differences between whites and black and brown people on policing. Listen Now – Episode #448
As America celebrates emancipation on Juneteenth Day 2020, our panel discusses the state and local responses to the Black Lives Matter movement, including the Milwaukee Common Council’s proposal to cut the police budget by 10% and Milwaukee Public School board’s move to remove police from the schools. We are also joined by State Representative Jonathan Brostoff to discuss shocking racism from elected officials and businesses in Menomonee Falls this week. Finally, we discuss two critical SCOTUS rulings, both major defeats for President Trump, on LGBTQ+ and immigrants’ rights. Do these surprising rulings throw cold water on the right’s plan to legislate through conservative judges? LISTEN NOW – EPISODE #447 Download Mp3 Press Clips
We welcome Mark Thomsen, the attorney for Milwaukee Bucks player Sterling Brown, to discuss critical lessons from Sterling Brown’s legal case against the Milwaukee Police and what they teach us about police reform. In addition, we discuss the Wisconsin Election Commission’s unanimous decision to send absentee ballot application to 2.7 million Wisconsin registered voters. Listen Now – Episode #446 Download MP3 Press Clips
Read Sterling Brown Legal Complaint Contact Mark Thomsen
Citizen Action’s JoAnna Bautch and Rafael Smith join the show to discuss the national uprising sparked by George Floyd’s murder. We talk about the inspiring outpouring of social action in communities across Wisconsin, led by young people, calling for police accountability, fundamental criminal justice reform, and racial justice, We also talk about initial stepping stone policies to structural reform such as shifting resources away from the publicly funded oppression of marginalized minority communities and investing in a just, anti-racist, and humane system of public safety.
We welcome Tobita Chow, director of Justice Is Global, a special project of People’s Action, to discuss the dangerous effort shift public attention away from the disastrous pandemic response by scapegoat China, risking a dangerous military competition between the two most powerful nations on earth. This cynical divide-and-conquer politics is sparking a wave of racial hatred aimed at Asian Americans. We talk about how our success requires embracing principles of anti-racist solidarity and international cooperation. We also review the latest COVID-19 news, including huge delays in unemployment insurance claims. Listen Now – Episode #444 Download MP3 Press Clips