In case you hadn't noticed, today is an election day. If you live in Bayside, Fox Point, Glendale, River Hills, Shorewood, or Whitefish Bay — and you have not already voted — please vote in this important primary election. Grasssroots North Shore recommends that you vote for Liz Sumner for Milwaukee County Supervisor in District 1.
And if you live in the Cedarburg School District or the Mequon-Thiensville School District, you have an important primary too. In both cases, the lowest vote-getter will be eliminated from the April 5 ballot. In Cedarburg, we don't have a solid endorsement to give you. But various trusted voices have recommended that you vote for FOUR of these five candidates: Kate Erickson, Ryan Hammetter, Hani Malek, Mike Maher, and Jamie Maier. In Mequon-Thiensville, we know more because there was a recall election there in November 2021. The recall was handily thwarted but one of the defeated participants is trying again. To thwart her again, we are recommending that you vote for TWO of the following three candidates: Paul Buzzell, Maria Douglas, and Jason Levash.
There's a lot of news, both in Wisconsin and in the national media. The Wisconsin Supreme Court temporarily ruled that while drop boxes could be used for the election happening today, they will not be an available avenue for returning absentee ballots in April. The ruling is temporary because the court has not yet held a hearing on the matter but will do so in time to make a general ruling before the partisan primary on August 9 and the November 8 general election. Here's the article in the Journal Sentinel.
If you want the convenience of voting absentee for one or all of the remaining elections in 2022, you can request absentee ballots for them at MyVote.WI.gov. If we cannot use drop boxes in August or November, you have two additional choices to return your ballot: either put the envelope with your ballot in the US mails — at least a week ahead of election day — or deliver it in person to your municipal clerk's office.
Our own Senator Ron Johnson is suffering what I hope is a disqualifying case of foot-in-mouth disease. Oshkosh Defense, Inc., won a large contract to build postal vehicles but announced that it would not be building them in Wisconsin. Instead, they're going to manufacture the trucks in Spartanburg, South Carolina. Senator Johnson has publicly declared that he will not urge the company to use a Wisconsin facility. "It's not like we don't have enough jobs here in Wisconsin," he said. It's hard to believe that our senator thinks good union jobs aren't needed here. Watch the short video about this matter that a More Perfect Union created to expose both the company and our just-plain-wrong senator.
Our website just added a new feature — Money Talks — with articles from Bill Holohan, emeritus professor and former chair of the Economics Department at the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee. The pieces will give you a fresh understanding of the economy. Sort of like our own Paul Krugman.
Finally, on the local front, Citizen Action is holding a virtual event called "In the Wash: A Virtual Workshop about Wisconsin Water Quality" on February 24. You can sign up for it here.
The national news is pretty meaty too. The Trump Organization's long-time accounting firm has just divorced itself from the company and has concluded that nearly 10 years worth of financial statements it developed for TFG (that's the former guy, in case you're not up on the lingo) are unreliable. And the MyPillow CEO/coup advocate announced that his bank is closing his accounts by February 18 because he's a "reputation risk" to the bank. These guys can't get more love from companies that have served them for years! Both events both happened on Valentine's Day, yet another example of the upside down, alternate reality world the MAGA folks are drawn to.
Today's Washington Post has two interesting stories on settlements reached in pending lawsuits, one by the Sandy Hook families who sued Remington Arms (the maker of the AR-15 style rifle used to kill their children) and the other by Virginia Giuffre who sued Prince Andrews for sexual abuse. The Sandy Hook case, ongoing for eight years, is a landmark: it's "the first instance in the United States of a gun manufacturer facing liability for a mass shooting."
If you have time for a short read, I recommend Jamelle Bouie's column in today's New York Times. "Why We Are Not Facing the Prospect of a Second Civil War" offers an excellent, abbreviated history of the forces that produced the Civil War of 1860.