Congratulations to Nicole Ki and the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism for the excellent story on the decline of democracy in Wisconsin. The essence of the decline can be traced to Scott Walker’s use of “divide and conquer” style of governance. Upon taking office Walker declared that teachers and public employees had not suffered as much as those in the private sector as a result of the Great Recession. Instead of policies to raise the levels of living for all Wisconsinites; he declared teachers to be the enemy and disparaged and demeaned them; pitting them against the rest of the workers in Wisconsin. He cast teachers as somehow complicit in the hard times that had befallen many families and began a drumbeat about failing schools in Wisconsin.
This column is a companion to our story revealing that the length of time bills were deliberated dropped significantly soon after Gov. Scott Walker and Republican legislators took control in 2011. Center Managing Editor Dee J. Hall explains the origins and methodology of the analysis.
The following statement was written by Sue Cross, CEO and executive director of the Institute for Nonprofit News, in response to a call last week from The Boston Globe, to remind readers of the value of America’s free press. The Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism is a founding member of INN, a network of more than 170 independent, nonpartisan and nonprofit news organizations dedicated to strengthening the sources of trusted news for thousands of communities.
ByNicole Ki / Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism |
Extreme partisanship and approval of legislation despite widespread opposition have left Wisconsin residents feeling increasingly powerless, the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism has found.
When the Oconto Police and Fire Commission said in April that it had interviewed two finalists for the open position of chief of police, Kent Tempus of the Oconto County Reporter asked who the finalists were.
It was a simple request, made under the part of Wisconsin’s open records law that requires the naming of final candidates for public offices.
The answer should have been simple, too — but it wasn’t.
Russians have been testing the vulnerability of elections in Wisconsin and other states for years, and voting systems in Wisconsin can be breached, according to security experts. Despite the risks, state and local officials say not to worry.