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Qualified appointees should be given a chance to serve

(MADISON)—Today, Senator Tim Carpenter (D-Milwaukee) issued the following statement related to the Senate Health Committee’s actions on Governor Evers’ appointments to the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics Authority and Board.

“Republican Senators’ approach of voting down many qualified appointments for hyperpartisan reasons is a tremendous threat to the Senate as an institution and a betrayal of the bipartisan approach to state governance that the people of Wisconsin expect from their legislature.

“Today in the Health Committee, Republicans took the unfortunate action of voting down three more perfectly qualified appointees to the UW Hospital and Clinics Authority. This continues a disturbing pattern of partisanship from the Republican-controlled Senate, which has failed to act in a timely fashion to consider the Governor’s appointments since 2019, and now is putting political retribution and pushing their personal agendas above attending to the people’s business.

“Barbara Lawton, Sondy Pope, and Candice Owley each have had distinguished careers serving our state, and bring their unique and valuable experiences with them as qualified appointees to this board. They deserve a chance to continue their service as members of the UW Hospital and Clinics Authority.

“Without any discussion at today’s vote, neither the appointees, the public, nor our fellow legislators can determine why these individuals were voted down. These individuals, future appointees, and the public deserve at least an explanation.

 “Senators have the prerogative to vote an appointee either up or down, but I don’t think my Republican colleagues appreciate the damage they are doing to bipartisanship in Wisconsin. I hate to see the recent trend of voting down qualified individuals for obviously partisan reasons. I am very concerned this sends a terrible signal to citizens and will cause many highly qualified candidates to choose not to serve on state boards and commissions. I sincerely hope that we don’t see this continue.


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