Assembly Democrats fighting for your future
By Rep. Katrina Shankland, published in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
As we move into the holiday season, there's one thing we all can agree on: We're grateful the election season is behind us.
After being bombarded by negative ads fueled by millions of dollars of dark money, it's tempting to tune out and take a step back from politics for a while. But now is the time for us to look forward, not backward, and set ambitious goals to grow Wisconsin jobs and help our working families thrive.
Next session, Assembly Democrats will put forward a bold, vibrant agenda that will create jobs and rebuild our middle class. We must spark a growing economy that works for everyone, ensuring every Wisconsinite has a fair shot at achieving the American Dream. That's why we will fight to protect the freedom of every person to work and support his or her family, tackle the growing problems of income inequality and student loan debt and push to strengthen our public schools.
This November, we saw the people of Wisconsin support three core issues that Democrats champion. Nine counties supported referendums to raise the minimum wage, 19 counties overwhelmingly passed referendums to expand access to BadgerCare and two counties and 10 municipalities voted to overturn Citizens United. The bipartisan support across the state for fair wages, access to health care for those who need it and getting money out of politics was tremendous, and the Legislature and governor have an obligation to honor the referendums' outcomes.
But so far, Republicans have ignored the voters' wishes on these issues. Instead, they are choosing to focus on waging partisan vendettas against the co-owner of the Milwaukee Bucks, the Government Accountability Board, university researchers and John Doe investigators.
They've also said that their top priority will be to expand unaccountable private voucher schools, leeching money from our neighborhood public schools that already have seen deep cuts. It's no coincidence that shadowy pro-voucher groups spent over $1 million supporting Republicans and attacking Democrats this election.
Wisconsin doesn't need more of the same partisan plans to settle political vendettas. What we need is a bold agenda and people who will fight for our seniors, veterans, students, farmers and small-business owners. Assembly Democrats will be championing equal pay for equal work, Made in America and Buy Wisconsin, strengthening the right to vote, investing in clean energy jobs and ensuring economic fairness for every family in Wisconsin.
As the new assistant Assembly Democratic leader, it's my mission to fight for these bold initiatives and take them directly to you. We will meet the people of Wisconsin at their kitchen tables and Main Street diners and listen to their ideas. We will represent their voices — rural and urban — in the state Assembly. With a strong vision for our future, we will strengthen our communities and create a better Wisconsin, from Superior to Sparta to Green Bay to Platteville.
We are more determined than ever to fight for the people's agenda — your agenda.
Rep. Katrina Shankland (D-Stevens Point) is the assistant Assembly Democratic leader and represents the 71st Assembly District.