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A swing, a miss, and an errant bat in the stands


Tuesday, November 14th, 2023



Senator Chris Larson
608-266-7505 (office)


MADISON, WI – Seasoned fans might remember a former Brewers slugger named Jeromy Burnitz. He sometimes swung his bat so hard trying to hit a home run that the bat would fly out of his hands and into the seats on the first base side, imperiling all fans in its path.

That’s a lot like what happened today in the State Senate. In a desperate rush to pass a stadium funding package to keep AmFam Field up to MLB specifications for another 27 years, we passed a bill with few safeguards for taxpayers that will end up costing us roughly half a billion dollars - money that could be better spent on policies that benefit all of us, not just those who can afford to attend a Major League baseball game.

With 7 years left on the current lease, it’s curious that we chose to swing at the first pitch instead of waiting for the Brewers to truly come to the table with a deal that asks a whole lot more from team ownership and a whole lot less from our neighbors.

Despite their position in a highly profitable, multi-billion dollar monopoly, pro MLB teams, like other major sports teams, have a business plan that includes coming to cities and states with their hands out every few decades. Perhaps the next time the Brewers owners come back for a new stadium, political leaders will have more patience at the plate, wait for better pitches, and know when to cry foul.