30 Pieces of Silver Paid in Full, Wirch Gets Spot on JFC
It’s that incoming minority leader Chris Larson (D-Milwaukee) bounced off Lena Taylor (D-Milwaukee) to put Wirch on and decided to keep La Crosse’s Jen Shilling — who was a mainstay during her Assembly days — on instead.
A Democratic senator said to have changed his vote for his party’s leader snagged a coveted appointment Wednesday on the Legislature’s powerful budget committee.
Sen. Bob Wirch (D-Somers) and Sen. Jennifer Shilling (D-La Crosse) were chosen to serve on the Joint Finance Committee by incoming Senate Minority Leader Chris Larson (D-Milwaukee). Earlier this month, Larson beat his Democratic colleague Jon Erpenbach of Middleton in a race for minority leader.
After the vote, Erpenbach’s backers concluded Sen. Bob Wirch (D-Pleasant Prairie) had voted for Larson after saying he would vote for Erpenbach. One of them had noticed Wirch had folded his ballot multiple times and was able to tell which ballot was cast by Wirch after the fact.
Justin Sargent, Larson’s chief of staff, said that the Milwaukee Democrat hadn’t considered the recent leadership vote in deciding on the committee appointments. Shilling, who had run for assistant minority leader and lost to Sen. Dave Hansen (D-Green Bay), was seen as being aligned with Erpenbach.
Under the soon-to-be replaced legislature, Taylor is the current co-chair of Joint Finance with soon-to-be Speaker Robin Vos (R-Burlington). What exactly did she do to Larson to not only lose her seniority from the committee, but to be bounced completely.
There’s got to be a story behind that right there. Is it because the two don’t get along — a theory I don’t buy — or because the two faced off against each other in the primaries of Milwaukee Assembly Districts where Larson (and WEAC) was seeking to replace many African American incumbents who Taylor was close with?
It’s probably the latter, but the truth is, we’ll never know. He’s only has two spots to fill, and probably has a litany of reasons not to give each and every member of his caucus a spot on Joint Finance.