Brewtown Politico

Carrying a little stick and speaking loudly in Milwaukee


Wisconsin needs campaign finance reform

The Shepherd has an interview with outgoing Milwaukee County District Attorney E. Michael McCann on the state of government in Wisconsin, and the need for reform following the caucus scandal which resulted in convictions for both Democratic and Republican state legislators.

A bill to reform campaign finance in Wisconsin has been under consideration in the legislature for a long time. As McCann mentions, it passed the State Senate overwhelmingly, but a faction of Republican members of the Assembly conspired to keep it from coming up for a vote.

Shepherd: SB 1 passed …
McCann: By 28 to 5 in the Senate.
Shepherd: But it was killed in the Assembly.
McCann: Right, in the Republican caucus. They wouldn’t bring it on [to the floor for a vote]. Rep. Stephen Freese (R-Dodgeville) was in the position to do it. But this is not a partisan thing. One of the most forceful speakers on this issue is Mike Ellis, a Republican senator [from Neenah], and Freese supported it. We don’t know exactly what happened in the Republican caucus, but it was beaten down there. They didn’t want to vote on it. They didn’t want to put their membership on the line. I’ve heard Mike McCabe [of the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign] say that if it went to a vote it would have won. But the Republicans didn’t want to go on record as voting against it.

Scroll halfway down this page to read the article entitled “There Has Got To Be Campaign Finance Reform”.


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