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- What to do about progressive icon and eugenicist Charles Van Hise
- Innovators stifled by current healthcare system
- Delay in removing ineligible Medicaid recipients costs Wisconsin taxpayers hundreds of millions
- What if Wisconsin stopped making childcare pointlessly costly?
- Increased choice funding — and Ramirez family’s generosity — will help thousands flourish
- Governor keeps alive possibility of local bans on fossil fuels
- SNAP is a larded, sugary mess
- Wins on justice, education and taxes are only the start of Wisconsinites’ work
According to a Marquette Law School poll last fall, 64% of registered Wisconsin voters, and 43% of Republicans, favor full legalization. Thirty percent of Wisconsinites and 50% of Republicans think it should remain illegal. Only 6% of registered voters say they just don’t know.
Many counties in Wisconsin have essentially decriminalized the possession or sale of marijuana, or cannabis, as it now often is known, and the relatively few people who are charged criminally in other counties are ever incarcerated.
Partisans are actively hoping Janet Protasiewicz will have a role in casting a decisive vote on redistricting, school choice, voter ID and even rolling back Gov. Scott Walker’s Act 10, prohibiting collective bargaining for most state employees.
Our governor, you likely have heard by now, is the talk of the nation for using his unique veto power to essentially try to lock in tax increases and big spending until sometime close to Armageddon.
Governor Evers signed a budget passed by the Legislature that includes a more than 30% starting pay raise for assistant district attorneys and assistant public defenders and more flexibility for merit-based pay raises for attorneys currently in those roles. This makes the compensation for these roles more competitive and should reduce the high rates of turnover currently existing in District Attorney and public defender offices.
Wisconsinites clearly got some wins in the 2023-2025 biennel budget. Now the task at hand is consolidate and expand those moving forward.
The Badger Institute on Wednesday praised action by the Legislature’s budget writing committee to raise pay for prosecutors and public defenders, a move the Institute has been advocating for nearly a year.
The bare-knuckle, politicized State Supreme Court race that just shattered national spending records and obliterated traditional judicial norms has raised anew the question of whether justices should be elected the same way as partisan Republicans and Democrats. Alternatives in use in other states include appointments and independent commissions.
Wisconsin’s current expungement statute is flawed. It forces judges to make poor decisions with limited information, encourages uneven and often nonsensical administration of justice, and does little to help employers, victims, or low-level, non-violent offenders we should all want in jobs rather than cells.
Public safety is a foundational requirement for prosperity in our communities. This means that fully funding the various systems that ensure public safety is a requirement, not a political preference. That’s why individuals from the most progressive to the most conservative agree these agencies should function effectively.
Wisconsin’s criminal justice system must first and foremost work to reduce crime, improve public safety and achieve justice for victims.
The Badger State remains, on the whole, a safe place that’s been getting safer. But Wisconsinites who live and work in Milwaukee have seen dramatic increases in homicide, auto theft and aggravated assault. For some specific offenses, other Wisconsin cities are also seeing worsening trends.
Of the convicted criminals Wisconsin imprisons, most will serve a sentence and be released. Then what?
Wisconsin’s court system is plagued by massive delays and a growing backlog of criminal cases. It now takes more than a year for a court to resolve an armed robbery charge, 14 months to resolve a sexual assault case and more than 15 months to resolve an allegation that someone committed a murder.
For the people who need it most — poor residents of Milwaukee, families and victims of particularly violent crimes like homicide and aggravated assault throughout the state, children in schools where politicians won’t allow police, and almost anyone awaiting a verdict — Wisconsin’s criminal justice system is failing.