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African-American leaders in Milwaukee got on the bus Tuesday to try to boost turnout in black neighborhoods for next Tuesday's recall election.

There have been several events this month aimed at increasing voter turnout in Milwaukee minority neighborhoods. The latest effort involved about ten top African-American elected leaders riding on Milwaukee County transit buses to talk with riders about voting. Democratic state Sen. Lena Taylor spoke at a bus stop as a bus was approaching, "We started van transports yesterday.
They're screaming at me to get on the bus, and we're getting on the bus today. We're doing visibility, all of these different things so we can encourage people to vote."

Taylor says the Operation Grow Wisconsin get out the vote effort is non-partisan. But Milwaukee County supervisor Michael Mayo says compared to Republican Gov. Scott Walker, Democrat Tom Barrett has the better record of reaching out to African-Americans, "I can say he's active. Is he...

Voters in western Wisconsin’s 23rd State Senate District recall election will choose between two candidates who've faced each other in a previous election.
Republican incumbent Terry Moulton of Chippewa Falls and Democrat Kristen of Eau Claire have both served in the State Assembly and now both are competing for the 23rd State Senate District seat. But this isn’t their first matchup. In 2008, Moulton was finishing up a term as representative in the 68th Assembly District when he was challenged for the first time by Kristen Dexter, a newcomer to state politics. When the votes were counted, Dexter was declared the winner by less than 300 votes. On June 5th, the two will be battle again in a recall election.
Moulton says the recall is about public union bosses trying to maintain their stranglehold on Wisconsin taxpayers. He says collective bargaining for public workers was unsustainable and limiting it was necessary to correct the state’s deficit, “We were...

Gov. Scott Walker says he won't pardon anyone charged in the ongoing John Doe investigation of former aides who worked for him as Milwaukee County executive.

Walker's comments came after Democratic challenger Tom Barrett pressed the issue as he has repeatedly in the closing days of the recall campaign. The governor's answer was unequivocal, "I've said repeatedly, I'm not issuing any pardons on anything, period. He knows that statement. He's heard that statement. He's desperately trying to talk about anything except for the success of our reforms."

Among the former associates charged in the investigation are Tim Russell and Kelly Rindfleish--Russell for embezzling veterans funding and Rindfleish for performing illegal campaign work using her job at the county. Both are awaiting trial.

While Walker was quick to respond to Barrett's comments on pardons, he continued to brush off calls from Barrett to release e-mails connected to the John Doe, saying that to do so would violate the...

A Wisconsin broadcasters' group is backing an effort by the National Association of Broadcasters to stop Washington from requiring TV stations to put political ad information online.
Broadcasters are already required to provide political ad data on paper at their stations, but the FCC wants to modernize the system by creating a nationwide online database.
As a top 50 market, Milwaukee would have to post information first; All other Wisconsin media markets would have until July 2014 to comply.
Wisconsin Broadcasters Association President and CEO Michelle Vetterkind says she supports the NAB trying to block this rule. She says it’s unfair that satellite and cable companies will not have to disclose their political ad information: “It is inequitable and anti-competitive to require TV broadcasters, but not their competitors, to place this sensitive, commercial information – including their rates, and that’s the big deal, including their rates – in a central database.”
Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council...

A recall election next week in the 13th state Senate District, located between Madison and Milwaukee, pits a political novice against the man who was, in some ways, the face of last year's battle over collective bargaining. Photographer Lori Compas squares off against Senate Republican Leader Scott Fitzgerald.
Like most Republicans, Scott Fitzgerald voted for Gov. Scott Walker's agenda. But as majority leader, he also rounded up the votes, sometimes using extraordinary tactics in unprecedented circumstances. Lori Compas says Fitzgerald's strongarm approach is why he deserves recall even more than the governor: “What we are seeing here is a pattern of abuse of power and betrayal of trust.”
But Fitzgerald says the bottom line is that the changes he pushed through have made Wisconsin better. “I believe that I would do it again, and I believe that the Republican legislature would do it again.”
Fitzgerald became a national political figure for a period after Senate Democrats left...

Democratic gubernatorial candidate and Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett spent Memorial Day meeting with voters at the original Brat Fest in Madison.
For Barrett it was a day of retail politicking as he went from table to table at Brat Fest to shake hands with voters. Most said they were supporting him—a few said they were voting for Gov. Scott Walker.
The event followed up a morning stop at Beloit's Memorial Day Parade in addition to visits to neighborhood festivals and churches. Barrett says the response he's getting is good—and he's confident people will support his campaign, “Our moment will come on election day when people come out to vote. And what I was saying Sunday in the churches was he has mountains and mountains of money and my hope is that we'll have lines and lines of people.”
In some places people were voting Monday despite the government holiday. Madison's city clerk opened her office for three...

A liberal Super political action committee is targeting 10 members of Congress they say are carrying the Tea Party torch. One is northern Wisconsin freshman Republican Congressman Sean Duffy.
Duffy says protesters are not only showing up at his appearances in the 7th Congressional District, but they’re literally going the extra mile and following him in his car. “This is a whole new level of politics. We’re being followed by a group of four of these radicals from San Francisco. And so, you look at that, and you can’t even do your job.”
The group is the California-based SuperPAC CREDO, which is spearheading an effort they call “Take Down the Tea Party 10.” CREDO President Becky Bond says they opened an office in Wausau and have dozens of local volunteers who track Duffy: “If you have to call a group of people who believe women should have access to birth control and healthcare, if you call us a...

With just a little over a week to go before the recall election, several well-known GOP governors are visiting the state to help support the Walker campaign. The GOP is bringing out the big guns ahead of next week’s recall election. South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley plans to make an appearance with Scott Walker in Wisconsin on Friday. And last week, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal stopped in the state for a rally and a fundraiser. Both governors are well known in party circles. In fact, Jindal has been floated as a possible running mate for Mitt Romney. At the rally last week, Walker supporter Dick Keller said he thought the visits would help the campaign. "I think its keeping the level of excitement up which is what we need to do. It’s like a marathon race between the elections in 2010," he says. "The recalls…the recounts…it goes on and on so people can get people fatigued so it’s a good...

Next Tuesday, voters in four state senate districts will decide whether to remove the Republican incumbents from office. Today, we look at the 21st District in southeast Wisconsin. Incumbent Republican Van Wanggaard is trying to fight off a recall challenge from Democrat John Lehman -- the man he defeated in 2010 to win the seat.
Wanggaard and Lehman grew up a few years apart on the same side of Racine. As young men their lives were shaped in part by the Vietnam War. Wanggaard had a high draft number and didn’t get called while Lehman did get drafted but refused induction and received a sentence of jail time and community service. He subsequently received a presidential pardon. A few years later, the two spent time together in Racine’s Park High school where Lehman taught.
Wanggaard spent a full career with the Racine Police Department before retiring, as Lehman did with Racine Unified. Now in politics the two share...

Wisconsin's elections agency says more than 113-thousand absentee ballots have already been issued for the June 5th recall election.
Absentee voting didn't start until Monday and already the state is on pace to nearly equal the number of absentee ballots cast in the November 2010 general election. That's significant because in that election people had four weeks to vote absentee. For this election they only have two weeks.
Madison City Clerk Maribeth Witzel-Behl says that in her office alone, more than 10-thousand absentee ballots have been issued this week--just two-thousand fewer than in November of 2010. Her office is staying open for at least a few hours every day this weekend, including Memorial Day, "It's our job to facilitate the right to vote and our voters are used to being able to vote in extended hours. And there's no question that we're going to continue that practice."
In-person, early absentee voting runs through the close of business...

Here and Now

Columbia University political science professor and author of Get Out the Vote!: How to Increase Your Voter Turnout Donald Green talks about the important role voter turnout will play in the recall elections only two weeks away.

Here and Now

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and PolitiFact Wisconsin Editor Greg Borowski takes an in-depth look at claims made by Gov. Scott Walker and Tom Barrett surrounding the latest jobs numbers.

Here and Now

Reporter Zac Schultz looks into the debate over changes to Wisconsin’s Badgercare program in the second segment of a three part series exploring major issues in the upcoming recall election.

Here and Now

Reporter Adam Schrager examines the divisive effects political turmoil in the state Capitol is having on communities around the state.

WPT Presents

Frederica Freyberg profiles the candidates in the four state senate recall races, in this 30-minute Wisconsin Vote special.

Gov. Scott Walker says apparent problems with crime data reporting in Milwaukee raise leadership questions about his Democratic recall opponent Tom Barrett. Barrett replies that Walker may also have crime issues.
Less than two weeks before the recall election, a Milwaukee newspaper that has endorsed Gov. Walker has released a probe showing that violent crime may be under-reported in Milwaukee. Walker insists he's not happy to see the newspaper's figures. But in the context of the coming recall election, the Republican incumbent is using them to bash Milwaukee Mayor Barrett.
Republicans are calling for a state audit of the Milwaukee Police Department crime data. Mayor Barrett says a federal analysis that Milwaukee police requested is already underway. Barrett says there's no sign that any crime reporting errors in Milwaukee were deliberate, and if there are mistakes, they will be corrected. Referring the John Doe investigation into Walker's time as Milwaukee County executive, Barrett urged reporters to quiz Walker.
...

Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal campaigned for Gov. Scott Walker in Waukesha Thursday, (5/24) calling Walker an example that the rest of the country could follow.
Jindal said Walker had done more in his first year-and-a-half as governor than many people do in their entire political careers. Jindal cited a phrase Walker uses often on the campaign trail, saying he liked it so much he used it in his home state, “Listen to what he said. This is not about the next election. This is not about the next poll. This is about the next generation. I literally opened our legislative session quoting Gov. Walker to our legislators in Louisiana. Imagine how different our country would be if everybody we elected to represent us in Wisconsin and Washington, D.C. had that attitude.”
Jindal said a Walker victory would send a message to the entire country.
Jindal's visit came as Democrats continued their line of attack on Gov. Walker,...

The candidates for governor continue to compete for police union votes.
Democrat Tom Barrett has announced an endorsement from the National Association of Police Organizations. The group represents 1000 police units across the U.S.
Earlier, Barrett picked up the backing of the Wisconsin Professional Police Association, as well as the West Allis police officers' union, which supported Republican Scott Walker in 2010. Mayor Barrett says he'd like to win over some rank and file members of the Milwaukee police officers' union. He says the cop on the beat can't trust Scott Walker to preserve collective bargaining powers.
But the leader of the Milwaukee Police Association has reaffirmed his union's endorsement of Gov. Walker. Mike Crivello won't say if the governor has promised not to target collective bargaining by police.
Walker says he continues to want to guarantee that there will be adequate police and fire protection across the state, meaning he doesn't want to anger those...

WPT Presents

This 30-minute Wisconsin Vote special introduces citizens from around the state, sharing the election-year issues that matter most in their lives.

WPT Presents

WPT invited the major candidates in the gubernatorial recall election to an in-depth interview. Democratic Tom Barrett answers questions about how he would solve some of the issues facing Wisconsin. Gov. Scott Walker declined the invitation to be interviewed.

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