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Mole's Progressive Democrat

The Progressive Democrat Newsletter grew out of the frustration of the 2004 election. Originally intended for New York City progressives, its readership is now national. For anyone who wants to be alerted by email whenever this newsletter is updated (usually weekly), please send your email address and let me know what state you live in (so I can keep track of my readership).

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I am a research biologist in NYC. Married with two kids living in Brooklyn.

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  • Wednesday, March 16, 2011

    Wisconsin Focus: CRITICAL April 5th Election!!!

    There are two critical elections coming up April 5th in Wisconsin. One is statewide and one is specific to Milwaukee County, but BOTH are extremely important for progressive, pro-Union Democrats to win.

    First the Statewide race: JoAnn Kloppenberg for Wisconsin Supreme Court

    With the Wisconsin Republicans taking away the rights of working class Americans to please their billionaire buddies, there is going to be one hell of a fight in the Wisconsin Supreme Court. From FireDogLake:

    If you’ve been following along in my last post, you know the news: the Wisconsin State Senate rushed through and passed a bill that strips collective bargaining rights from most public employees. The vote in the State Senate, entirely composed of Republicans, was 18-1; only moderate Dale Schultz voted no. The budget repair bill was split at the last minute, cleaving the “non-fiscal” anti-union piece from the fiscal components of the bill. The non-fiscal piece did not require a quorum, so the Senate was able to pass it....

    • Legal challenges. There are going to be a number of legal challenges to this bill. It will not be implemented right away. There’s the near-term challenge of how the bill got passed tonight. It was done in a way that may have violated open meetings laws, by not allowing 24 hours notice for a public meeting of the conference committee. There are other statutes about collective bargaining that may be brought up in court and fought. And there’s the issue of the bill having a fiscal impact. Scott Walker spent three weeks claiming that collective bargaining was a fiscal issue, and then the legislature just passed the bill as “non-fiscal.” Courts will have to wade through a lot of this, and it’s sure to go up to the state Supreme Court. Which brings us to…

    • Supreme Court fight. The matchup between David Prosser (R) and JoAnn Kloppenberg (D) for the state Supreme Court on April 5 just got very interesting. It’s a statewide vote, and the balance of power on the state Supreme Court is at stake. Right now there are 4 Republicans and 3 Democrats on the court, but one of those Republicans is Prosser. Expect lots of organizing and millions of dollars poured into this election, which is much like a political election, with debates and everything. If Democrats win, the legality of what took place tonight may be put in greater question


    That's right. An election that very few people were paying attention to has now become MASSIVELY important.

    Recall efforts are underway targeting the Wisconsin Republican State Senators who are minions of the Billionaire Koch Brothers.

    Efforts are underway to raise money to retake the Wisconsin State Assembly and Senate.

    But before these, we need to win on April 5th.

    JoAnn Kloppenberg is not accepting contributions. She is running on public financing only. What she needs is PEOPLE. People to knock on doors, pass out flyers...and of course people to VOTE on April 5th.

    Here is some background on JoAnne:

    Assistant Attorney General Kloppenburg has been a litigator and prosecutor at the Wisconsin Department of Justice since 1989, serving under Attorneys General from both parties: Don Hanaway, Jim Doyle, Peg Lautenschlager and JB Van Hollen.

    Her legal experience is broad and deep and includes constitutional law, appellate law, civil litigation, environmental prosecution and administrative law. She has argued numerous cases before the Wisconsin Supreme Court and in the Wisconsin Court of Appeals and she has tried cases in circuit courts around the state.

    Assistant Attorney General Kloppenburg graduated with honors from the University of Wisconsin Law School (1988). She has an undergraduate degree from Yale (1974), also with honors, and a Masters in Public Affairs from Princeton University (1976). During Law School, she was an intern for Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson and later was a law clerk for Chief Judge Barbara Crabb of the United States District Court.

    A teacher at the UW Law School since 1990, she was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Botswana (1976-1979) and remains active in professional, civic and community life. She is a member of the Legal Association for Women (LAW), a mentor with the Dane County Bar Association, an English as a Second Language (ESL) tutor, and a member of her neighborhood association board, and has volunteered with various nonprofit groups.


    CLICK HERE TO VOLUNTEER

    It is CRUCIAL that we win this election. It is our first chance to challenge the pro-Billionaire, anti-working class Republicans since they first started to try and take away workers' rights. Your vote and your time are vital to winning.


    NOW the Milwaukee County Race: Chris Abele for Milwaukee County Executive



    Milwaukee County Executive is what gave the now infamous Scott Walker his start. Winning this is a clear message that Wisconsin rejects Walker's extremism. This race pits progressive Chris Abele against right wing extremist Walker clone Jeff Stone.

    About Chris Abele:

    Chris Abele’s story is one of service, hard work and giving back. These values have been the cornerstone of his adult life, and they drive his candidacy for Milwaukee County Executive.

    And Chris learned these values early on from the examples set by his family.

    His granddad was a World War II submarine commander who was posthumously awarded for valor when he gave his life in the Pacific Theater to save others.

    His dad grew up in a blue-collar neighborhood, started a business that enjoyed success, and taught his children the importance of hard work and giving back.

    These are the values Chris brought with him when he came to Milwaukee nearly 20 years ago. And during his time in Milwaukee County, Chris has put those values into action by dedicating his life to making our community stronger as a civic advocate and as a community leader.

    As the founder and CEO of the Argosy Foundation, an international nonprofit based right here in Milwaukee, Chris has worked to build partnerships and improve communities by building and strengthening programs in the arts, environment, education and health and human services.

    Chris partnered with local officials and fellow community leaders to strengthen important Milwaukee County institutions. From working with business, community and elected officials to reinvigorate the Mitchell Park Domes into a popular, revenue-generating destination; to revitalizing Bradford Beach; to leading the lighting transformation of the Marcus Center into a cutting-edge, energy-efficient system that saves money and makes Milwaukee County a more vibrant and exciting place to visit, Chris has worked tirelessly to improve the quality of life across Milwaukee County.

    Chris Abele, Candidate for Milwaukee County Executive, with Boys and Girls Club MembersChris is a passionate advocate for strengthening communities and providing hope to young people. As an active leader of the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Milwaukee, he has helped the organization touch lives. He earned the organization’s Most Valuable Person for his efforts to develop a comprehensive 10-year plan to help address the problems facing Milwaukee’s youth.

    As a business owner and civic leader, Chris has focused on creating value for communities. In Milwaukee and in communities across the United States, his commercial development firm brings new jobs to communities by putting old buildings back into productive use, and employing sustainable designs.

    And on top of all of this, Chris has worked hard with civic leaders, the business community, elected officials, academics and researchers, and Republicans and Democrats to study the very real problems facing Milwaukee County and develop new and bold ideas — free from politics — to solve them.

    His work with both the Public Policy Forum and the Greater Milwaukee Committee Task Force on Milwaukee County’s fiscal crisis identified ways to save County taxpayers millions by issuing pension obligation bonds at a reduced interest rate. Getting the legislation passed to allow Milwaukee County to issue these bonds took a broad collation of support from community leaders and elected officials across the political spectrum. It was hard work, but it was the fiscally responsible thing to do.

    Chris Abele, Candidate for Milwaukee County Executive with SeniorsChris is not a career politician, and he’s not part of the system that clearly isn’t working.

    Chris has started a business and created jobs. He’s managed operations and budgets, and been accountable for results. Chris has worked with and led dozens of organizations and efforts to strengthen our community.

    And Chris has never forgotten the values instilled in him by his family at a young age. Service. Hard work. Giving back. These are the values he still carries with him today as he seeks to bring new leadership and real reform to the serious problems facing our community. And these are the values Chris will bring everyday to the job as your Milwaukee County Executive.


    Click here for more info or to volunteer or donate. Please help us win this critical race.


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