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WPR/St. Norbert Poll Shows 15-Point Lead for Walker">WPR/St. Norbert Poll Shows 15-Point Lead for Walker

Since this is the St. Nor­bert Col­lege Poll, I’m very prone to be cyn­i­cal about this num­ber.  It’s just too small a sam­ple (401), done over too long (two weeks), and is usu­ally a school project (not kid­ding there).

Still, since it’s Wis­con­sin Pub­lic Radio spon­sor­ing the poll, a ton of lib­er­als are going to have to eat these num­bers because so many in their base get this news only from WPR.  Wish I was lis­ten­ing to Brian Schim­ming face off against Mike Tate this morn­ing on the Joy Cardin Show as they talk about this poll.

That alone would be fun to hear.

If the elec­tion for Wisconsin’s gov­er­nor was held right now, Repub­li­can Gov. Scott Walker would most likely win another term, accord­ing to the results of a new Wis­con­sin Pub­lic Radio-St. Nor­bert Col­lege sur­vey.

Mean­while, the survey’s results sug­gest Walker’s Demo­c­ra­tic chal­lenger needs to intro­duce her­self to voters.

Most of the survey’s 401 respon­dents say that they believe Wis­con­sin is headed in the right direction.

The sit­ting gov­er­nor also has a strong approval rat­ing, the sur­vey found. Walker is seek­ing a sec­ond term and is run­ning against Demo­c­rat Mary Burke.

Wendy Scat­ter­good, a polit­i­cal sci­en­tist and an asso­ciate at St. Nor­bert College’s Strate­gic Research Insti­tute, said that 55 per­cent of respon­dents said they will vote for Walker while 40 per­cent said they’d back Burke.

There’s a cor­re­la­tion there with how peo­ple feel the gov­er­nor is doing, which is his approval rat­ing, but also peo­ple feel the state is going in the right direc­tion,” she said. “And 57 per­cent of our respon­dents think the state is going in the right direc­tion, so it’s very close to the num­bers with the vote choice. And then, if you look at the governor’s approval rat­ings right now, it’s at 59 percent.”

UPDATE — Appar­ently Mike Tate no-showed on Joy Cardin.  They had to sub-in for­mer DPW chair­man Joe Wineke at the half-way part of the hour.

In my hon­est opin­ion, Joe was sound­ing like he wants his old job back.

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Cartoon of the Day


Here’s a news arti­cle on the study.

As bar­be­cue sea­son approaches, researchers have dis­cov­ered an unlikely ingre­di­ent that could improve the safety of your meat — let­ting it swill in beer.

They say that let­ting meat marindade in pil­sner can help reduce the for­ma­tion of poten­tially harm­ful cancer-causing sub­stances in grilled meats.

They say pil­sner and black beer are most effec­tive, halv­ing the amount of Poly­cyclic aro­matic hydro­car­bons, which have been linked to col­orec­tal cancer.

The researchers are report­ing that the very same beer that many peo­ple enjoy at back­yard bar­be­ques could, when used as a mari­nade, help reduce the for­ma­tion of poten­tially harm­ful sub­stances in grilled meats.

The researchers grilled sam­ples of pork mar­i­nated for four hours in Pil­sner beer, non-alcoholic Pil­sner beer or a black beer ale, to well-done on a char­coal grill.

Black beer had the strongest effect, reduc­ing the lev­els of eight major PAHs by more than half com­pared with unmar­i­nated pork.

“Thus, the intake of beer mar­i­nated meat can be a suit­able mit­i­ga­tion strat­egy,” say the researchers.

The study appears in ACS’ Jour­nal of Agri­cul­tural and Food Chemistry.

My per­sonal favorite is to mari­nade with a Leinie’s Creamy Dark.  Add that to some McCormick’s ready-made sea­son­ing or mari­nade mix and it’s great.

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Quote of the Day

It took two cycles, but appar­ently some­one is learn­ing accord­ing to a rather inter­est­ing arti­cle about the polit­i­cal anal prob­ing can­di­dates now have to go through if they want the back­ing of the Club for Growth.

There’s a rea­son for the scarcity of Club endorse­ments this year. Where other con­ser­v­a­tive groups have sought to cre­ate havoc in as many pri­maries as pos­si­ble — the Sen­ate Con­ser­v­a­tives Fund, for one, has endorsed plainly flawed, under­dog chal­lengers to incum­bents in Kansas and Ken­tucky — the Club prefers to engage in fewer races and have a dra­matic impact in each.

Makes you won­der what Duey Stroebel had to go through last week if the talk is he’s bow­ing out on a pri­mary of Petri — you know that thing Glenn Groth­mann is likely to lose in August.

The rest of the arti­cle explains why the Club has stayed out of races like the Ken­tucky GOP Sen­ate pri­mary chal­lenge of GOP Sen­ate Minor­ity Leader Mitch McConnell, while groups like the Madi­son Project and Sen­ate Con­ser­v­a­tive Fund have gone head first off the cliff with clearly-flawed can­di­date Matt Bevin.

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Grothman to Challenge Petri

Well…how to begin.

State Sen. Glenn Groth­man says he plans to run for Con­gress, chal­leng­ing fel­low Repub­li­can Tom Petri for the seat rep­re­sent­ing east-central Wisconsin.

Groth­man on Thurs­day called Petri a “very good human being” but says he rep­re­sents a time when Repub­li­cans stood for expand­ing government.

Petri is a 73-year-old mod­er­ate who’s held his seat for 35 years. He won most of his elec­tions hand­ily, fac­ing lit­tle or no com­pe­ti­tion from fel­low Republicans.

But Groth­man says Repub­li­cans in Con­gress have been lack­ing. He says he’s con­cerned about a cul­ture of depen­dency in the U.S., and the fed­eral gov­ern­ment is over­reach­ing into every­thing from health care to education.

At least two other Repub­li­cans are con­sid­er­ing chal­leng­ing Petri, includ­ing state Rep. Duey Stroebel and John Hiller, a close con­fi­dante of Gov. Scott Walker.

As any­one who’s read this blog since 2003 knows, I’m no great fan or cheer­leader of Tom Petri.  That being said, I respect him nonethe­less hav­ing known him since high school and the years since.

I also feel that we who grew up in the 6th Dis­trict have more than earned the right to replace him with a can­di­date of our already exist­ing bench.  This entire stunt feels like a grand scheme from south­east Wis­con­sin to push its weight around with those of us here have been more than patient over the years.  That redis­trict­ing and a desire by Ozau­kee Co. to spread its wings since it is no longer under the thumb of the Wauke­sha Co. GOP machine have more to do with it.  That this might be Grothman’s only oppor­tu­nity to push for­ward his career since he clearly is not loved by the 5th Dis­trict estab­lish­ment (i.e. Sensenbrenner).

Let’s be clear here.  There are going to be many peo­ple out in the tra­di­tional 6th who feel the way I do about this.  They don’t “love” Petri, but they also feel this isn’t needed.  That’s going to be in She­boy­gan Co., that’s going to be in Man­i­towoc Co., and that’s cer­tainly going to be in Fond du Lac and Win­nebago Cos.

Trust me, it doesn’t take a rocket sci­en­tist to fig­ure out who I would pre­fer as my next Con­gress­man.  That being said, it sure as hell isn’t Glenn Grothman.

For starter’s Grothman’s too depen­dent on south­east Wis­con­sin media.  That might be great for the Ozau­kee Co. crew, but I’m fairly cer­tain no one in the Green Bay mar­ket has heard much about him. (Hell, the part of the dis­trict that’s in the Madi­son mar­ket sure has heard a lot about him…)

Sec­ondly, Glenn’s a gaffe machine.  That might work for some, but it tends to make me cringe when a head­line is “Groth­man Says Money Mat­ters More to Men than Women.” (It’s actu­ally on his Wikipedia page.)  Trust me, I get, under­stand and sup­port the ideas behind the pol­icy he’s push­ing for, he just seems to find the most asi­nine way to say it.

Hell, I can’t count the num­ber of times I’ve been asked to com­ment on the Joy Cardin Show about a law Glenn’s only proposed.

Amanda Terkel at the Huff­in­g­ton Post just got her dream ful­filled with this announcement.

I’ve already said my peace more at RightWiscon­sin on the entire idea of a pri­mary.  Now I’m just going to cringe as I watch Glenn cam­paign for it, because you know who else is hop­ing for a “Fun Race?”  The press, just to see Glenn crash and burn since he’s a pub­lic rela­tions hand grenade primed to go off.

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Guy Zima Recaptures His Old Green Bay Council Seat

He’s BAAAAAAAaaaaaack!

Well, I will give Zima’s folks up in Green Bay credit for this.  You can’t keep a fire­brand and cur­mud­geon down.

Among the win­ners in Tuesday’s local elec­tions was for­mer Alder­man Guy Zima, who reclaimed his Dis­trict 9 coun­cil seat by defeat­ing Angela Warner in a closely watched contest.

Zima defeated Warner by nearly a 2-to-1 mar­gin. Healso beat her hus­band, Jim Warner, who gave up the Dis­trict 9 coun­cil seat to try unseat­ing Zima in a County Board race decided Tuesday.

Zima said vot­ers sent a strong mes­sage that they were dis­sat­is­fied with the rep­re­sen­ta­tion they received after he was dis­placed from city gov­ern­ment two years ago.

The peo­ple spoke very loudly and clearly,” he said. “They want some­body who will speak up and have some debate, rather than just a rub­ber stamp.”

Of the husband-and-wife team that he van­quished on two fronts Tues­day, Zima said: “They kind of ran as a team, and that team lost. I think these folks beat themselves.”

Angela Warner, who was mak­ing her first bid for elected office, said she was shocked and dis­heart­ened that vot­ers had rejected she and her husband.

Warner, how­ever, defended the strat­egy of chal­leng­ing Zima in two races, say­ing that she thought vot­ers were ready to “get rid of him completely.”

What is wrong with our city?” she added. “They want it run by a bunch of crazy people.”

Zima isn’t crazy.  He’s just highly entertaining.

In real­ity Zima — who leans con­ser­v­a­tive and once upon a time was in the state Assem­bly I believe — has long been a light­ning rod for his actions, stances (and out­bursts) on the city coun­cil.  But, he also is known to be very respon­sive to his dis­trict even if that flies in the face of actions that Green Bay Mayor Jim Schmidt wants to accom­plish for the city.

It was a strange, silent two-year reprieve.  That is over now.

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Kestell Announces He Won’t Seek Re-Election

Well, heads up to Wis­con­sin Elec­tion Watch, they had this rumor over a month ago. (Dis­claimer: I occa­sion­ally write for them, but did noth­ing on this subject)

This now makes the third Repub­li­can retire­ment from the Assem­bly for She­boy­gan Co.  The 27th (where my par­ents live) includes the lower third of Man­i­towoc Co. and the north­ern part of She­boy­gan Co.  It should be a Repub­li­can hold, but I’m unsure who the bench is at the moment.

The last one who con­sid­ered chal­leng­ing Kestell in a pri­mary was She­boy­gan Falls Mayor Randy Meyer, and he’s fac­ing re-election today.

Just over a month ago, Rep. Steve Kestell said he hadn’t yet decided whether to seek re-election to his 27th Assem­bly Dis­trict seat.

Kestell, R-Elkhart Lake, has now decided, and the answer is no.

In a release sent to media Tues­day after­noon, Kestell, 58, said his deci­sion has the bless­ing of his family.

Dur­ing my years in the state Leg­is­la­ture, I’ve worked every day to uphold the belief that elected offi­cials should strive to do the right thing, for the right rea­son, and in the right way,” he said. “I am proud of what we’ve accom­plished together, and I look for­ward to new chal­lenges as the future unfolds.”

Kestell, who serves as chair­man of the Assem­bly Edu­ca­tion Com­mit­tee, was on the fore­front of the push this win­ter against a Repub­li­can bill that would have cre­ated sanc­tions for poorly per­form­ing pub­lic schools and pri­vate schools that accept taxpayer-subsidized students.

Repub­li­cans ulti­mately dropped the plan and instead adopted a bill that would require all schools that accept pub­lic dol­lars to include per­for­mance data on report cards the pub­lic can view.

Kestell was first elected to his seat in 1998.

That being said, if Jack Lech­ler is the best RACC can come up with on short notice, I’m going to bang my head against the wall.

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Burke: I Won’t Self-Finance My Campaign

Except for that $400,000 starter loan naturally…

This has got to be a blow to the Demo­c­ra­tic state estab­lish­ment.  Part of what they were said to be push­ing about Burke as a can­di­date was she was a “business-minded woman who was rich.”  All code words for “She can cut checks to over­come Walker’s fundraising.

Now, it appears that avenue is being closed.

Demo­c­rat Mary Burke says she won’t be able to self-fund her cam­paign for gov­er­nor, say­ing she does not have that kind of wealth.

When Burke first floated the idea of run­ning for gov­er­nor, her per­sonal wealth made her an appeal­ing can­di­date to some Democ­rats and made oth­ers think twice about enter­ing the race. The for­mer Trek exec­u­tive, whose father founded the com­pany, has not dis­closed her net worth, though she did donate more than $400,000 to her cam­paign in just its first few months.

But Burke says peo­ple should not expect her to spend as much as some of Wisconsin’s most famous self-funded candidates.

I will put into this race what I can, but I can’t self-fund it,” said Burke. “I’m not a Ron John­son or a Herb Kohl. I don’t have that type of wealth.”

John­son con­tributed nearly $9 mil­lion to his suc­cess­ful U.S. Sen­ate cam­paign in 2010. For­mer U.S. Sen­a­tor Herb Kohl gave his cam­paigns more than $19 mil­lion over the course of his polit­i­cal career.

Burke says she’ll be rely­ing on tra­di­tional fundrais­ing to get her mes­sage out.

Her “tra­di­tional fundrais­ing” hasn’t been going so well.  While she raised $1.3 mil­lion $1.79 mil­lion for the sec­ond half of 2013, remove the $400,000 loan and it was only around $900,000 $1.4 mil­lion in just six month.  Not the kind of num­bers that tend to help you in a polit­i­cal fight these days.

(Cor­rected from ear­lier comment.)

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Walker Partially Vetoes Early Voting Reform Bill

Hon­estly, these are changes I can live with.

Gov. Scott Walker has qui­etly signed into law a bill that lim­its in-person absen­tee vot­ing to no later than 7 p.m. dur­ing the week and no week­end hours.

Walker vetoed a por­tion of the bill Thurs­day that lim­ited the hours of early vot­ing to no more than 45 in each of the two weeks prior to an elec­tion. He kept the pro­hi­bi­tion on week­end voting.

Democ­rats strongly opposed the mea­sure, say­ing it was tar­geted at tamp­ing down turnout in the heav­ily Demo­c­ra­tic cities of Mil­wau­kee and Madi­son which held extended hours dur­ing the 2012 pres­i­den­tial election.

Walker also vetoed a por­tion of the bill that would have reim­bursed local gov­ern­ments for costs asso­ci­ated with early voting.

The bill was one of more than two dozen that Walker acted on Thursday.

Haven’t seen the exact par­tial veto, but my take on this is that Walker has added 1o hours to the oper­a­tional week of early vot­ing in Wis­con­sin.  The orig­i­nal word­ing was that clerks offices could allow early vot­ing hours between 8 AM to 7 PM, Mon­day through Fri­day, but not sur­pass­ing 45 hours. In essence it gave clerks the lib­erty to deter­mine which hours between 8 AM and 7 PM they would con­duct early vot­ing — aver­ag­ing nine hours a day for five work­ing days.

(9 times 5 is 45 last time I checked…)

So, by elim­i­nat­ing the 45-Hour cap, this pretty much gives you 11 hours (8 AM to 7 PM) where you can early vote, Mon­day through Fri­day, two more hours each day, for a total of 55 hours a week.

You’d think the Left would applaud get­ting 10 more hours, of course, they’re going to sue to kill this law nonetheless.


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90 Percent of Lake Michigan Covered with Ice

I’m sorry, you were say­ing some­thing about “Global Warm­ing?”  Too busy laugh­ing at you while I point to this!

After hav­ing a melt­down early last week, Lake Michi­gan is now just over 90 per­cent cov­ered in ice, which equals the high­est lev­els ever recorded.

The lake was also just over 90 per­cent frozen in 1976, 1979 and 1994, accord­ing to the National Oceanic Atmos­pheric Administration.

The unyield­ing cold weather has caused the ice on Lake Michi­gan to con­tinue to expand the last sev­eral days.

The below high-resolution vis­i­ble satel­lite image from March 2 shows wide­spread ice cover over cen­tral Lake Michigan.

A small area of open water remained on the east­ern side of the lake, well away from the Michi­gan shore.

Here’s a satel­lite photo of the ice:

ice_cover_lake_michigan(Photo via NOAA)

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Prominent Liberal Donor Accused of Beating his Wife

A lit­tle harsh?

So was this.

Accord­ing to a Dane County crim­i­nal complaint:

Police in Maple Bluff were dis­patched to Rottier’s lake­front home on the evening of Feb. 7 for a report of a dis­tur­bance between a man and a woman.

Rottier’s wife, Frankie, told police her hus­band was sup­posed to take their chil­dren to the movies but came home about 7:30 p.m. and had been drink­ing. She admit­ted being angry that he was no longer going to take the chil­dren to the movies and con­fronted him about being drunk.

Rot­tier then drew back his cane. His wife said she turned away, and was struck across her back. Offi­cers observed a red welt, about an inch wide and seven inches long, from her shoul­der blade to her spine. Emer­gency med­ical staff arrived and treated Frankie Rot­tier, but she declined trans­port to a hospital.

Rot­tier, 62, was arrested and taken to the Dane County Jail, where a pre­lim­i­nary breath test indi­cated a blood alco­hol level  of 0.13.

Rot­tier is charged with mis­de­meanor bat­tery, domes­tic abuse, use of a dan­ger­ous weapon. Nei­ther he nor his attor­ney, Stephen Meyer, returned calls seek­ing com­ment. The case is sched­uled for a plea hear­ing Friday.

“Offi­cers observed a red welt, about an inch wide and seven inches long, from her shoul­der blade to her spine…”

Wow, that’s old school.  Like “Rule of Thumb” old school.

Com­monly used term orig­i­nat­ing in the early 1900s, when it was legal for men to beat their wives, as long as they used a stick no wider than their thumb.

No word yet if Rot­tier will be try­ing to use that as a legal defense.

As for being a “promi­nent lib­eral donor,” accord­ing to the Wis­con­sin Democ­racy Cam­paign, Rot­tier has given over $107,000 in dona­tions to Demo­c­ra­tic and lib­eral can­di­dates since at least 1992.

That’s as far back as WDC’s data­base goes.  The last dona­tions listed are for Mar­quette law pro­fes­sor Ed Fal­lone, who unsuc­cess­fully ran for state supreme court last year.   Noth­ing reported to likely Demo­c­ra­tic can­di­date Mary Burke (yet), but any wise cam­paign or activist group now knows to make a head­line when it does.

Rot­tier is worth mil­lions, and if he’s got a lake­front home in Maple Bluff that’s likely worth mil­lions too.  You know what else is in Maple Bluff?  The Governor’s Mansion.

You know, quite the real “salt of the earth” neigh­bor­hood that is.

UPDATE: Remove the “Yet.”  Records from the Gov­ern­ment Account­abil­ity Board show that Rot­tier gave $4,500 to the Burke cam­paign on Decem­ber 20, 2013.  Let’s hold our breath col­lec­tively as to when a lib­eral women’s rights group demands they return the dona­tions — or bet­ter yet — donate the money them­selves to a bat­tered women’s shelter.

UPDATE II: Dan Bice reports the Burke cam­paign is indeed donat­ing the $4,500 it has received from Rot­tier and giv­ing it to a bat­tered women’s shel­ter in Madison.

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