Legislature’s whirlwind session angers the public, seeks to hobble incoming Dem administration
Of note: This week we offer a photo and video essay by Coburn Dukehart, the Center’s digital and multimedia director, and Emily Hamer, our editorial intern. The two captured key moments during more than two days of hearings and protests at the Wisconsin State Capitol. The Republican-run Legislature passed a series of bills aimed at locking in their policies on taxes, Medicaid, transportation spending and the Affordable Care Act — and reducing the power of the incoming Democratic administrations of Gov.-elect Tony Evers and the new attorney general, Josh Kaul. Attention now turns to whether Gov. Scott Walker will sign the measures.
WisconsinWeekly, a collection of stories for people who care deeply about the state, is produced by Dee and Andy Hall, a couple who founded the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism. Dee is the managing editor and Andy is the executive director.
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Photo essay: Wisconsin’s frenetic lame duck session
Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism — December 5, 2018
WCIJ’s Emily Hamer and Coburn Dukehart were on the scene at the Capitol this week as legislators scrambled to change laws before Gov.-elect Tony Evers took office and members of the public made plain their opposition. These images and videos offer a snapshot from those contentious few days, which provided an exclamation point to our 2018 series, Undemocratic: Secrecy and Power vs. The People
For some comic relief, here’s The Onion’s take on Wisconsin’s recent turmoil. Head’s up, this is FAKE NEWS:
GOP-Controlled Wisconsin Legislature Votes To Dissolve State Rather Than Let Democrats Have It
Wisconsin Legislature Weakens Incoming Democratic Governor By Restricting His Access To Food, Water, Shelter
New election data highlights the ongoing impact of 2011 GOP redistricting in Wisconsin
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel — December 6, 2018
An analysis by Marquette University shows the extent of Wisconsin’s gerrymandering. Craig Gilbert reports that while Gov. Scott Walker lost his re-election by 1 percentage point, he still carried 63 of the state’s 99 state Assembly districts. Because of how the lines were drawn in 2011, Republicans have a significant built-in advantage, he found. “In short,” writes Gilbert, “in a year when Democrats swept the statewide elections, they had no prayer of winning the state Assembly.” Previously from WCIJ: High stakes for elections — and democracy — as U.S. Supreme Court nears decision on Wisconsin redistricting case
By the Numbers: Fourth National Climate Assessment
Peninsula Pulse — November 30, 2018
The Global Change Research Act of 1990 requires the U.S. Global Change Research Program to submit a report on climate change to Congress at least once every four years. The latest report indicates that the Midwest will be the region most affected by climate change, facing more rain and flooding and reduced farm production, biodiversity and tourism spending. The Trump administration released the report — which the president said he didn’t believe — on Black Friday, a day notorious for minimal news coverage.
How the restaurant industry normalizes wage theft
The Twin Cities Daily Planet — December 6, 2018
The Twin Cities Daily Planet finds that wage theft is pervasive within the restaurant industry, taking the form of requiring off-the-clock work, not paying overtime or shaving hours off of paychecks. “It’s so commonplace that people don’t even realize that it is illegal,” said one restaurant owner. A U.S. Department of Labor audit showed 84 percent of the full-service restaurants examined had at least one violation, but that figure may not capture wage theft against undocumented workers, as detailed in this story from WCIJ: Asian restaurants and Chicago employment agencies accused of exploiting Latino workers in Midwest