• Defund the Police
  • Election Reform
  • State Budget Surplus

Pushing Back on "Defund the Police" Movement

Earlier this week the Senate met to vote on a number of bills. One piece of legislation worth highlighting discourages communities from defunding their police departments.  SB 119 takes away state shared revenue to communities that decrease funding in their budget for hiring, training or retaining police, fire or emergency personnel.

The "Defund the Police" movement is not only misguided but it’s dangerous. Ironically the communities looking at taking these steps are the ones who need more law enforcement, not less.

In addition, the state Senate approved other law enforcement related bills this week. One provision would require officers to report when they use force or see colleagues using force. Another would make it illegal for law enforcement officers to use chokeholds unless it is for self-defense in life threatening situations.

Sen. Jagler Votes to Increase Ballot Integrity 

On Wednesday I voted to strengthen Wisconsin voting laws by supporting Senate Bills 204, 205 and 209 on the Senate Floor. SB 204 secures absentee ballot applications, SB 205 addresses absentee in long-term care facilities and SB 209 regulates the use of ballot “dropboxes”.

I was proud to join my Senate colleagues in addressing several of the concerns brought to us by voters on how to secure our elections. Last Fall, too many questions were raised about our election system and it was a top priority to identify and address these issues. The bills we voted on were part of a continued effort to bring integrity back to our elections.

In addition to the bills passed yesterday, Senate Bill 203 and Senate Bill 212 which passed last month, directly addressed the issue of the “Democracy in the Park” event last year in Madison and remedies the issue of local clerks filling in missing information on absentee ballot certificates. 

“Democracy in the Park" opened so many questions about the integrity of the election process in Madison and needed to be addressed. Securing our ballots and holding our elections officials accountable needs to be a top priority. The security of our absentee ballots and applications needs to be paramount. Their increased use during the pandemic only highlighted the need to address this issue.

The issue of election integrity continues to be a top priority for the Legislature with the Legislative Audit Bureau reviewing the results as well as several other investigations addressing the issue. Additional bills on election integrity are likely to be forthcoming.


It's Your Money

According to the non-partisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau, the state is now expected to take in $4.4 billion more in revenue than anticipated last January.

Like clockwork, when the treasury benefits from a substantial influx of money, there are calls to increase spending by politicians and bureaucrats. Instead of returning the money to those who it rightfully belongs to, the taxpayer, they prefer to go on a spending spree and increase the size of government exponentially.

If this spending is increased one time, it will be seen as the norm going forward and make it nearly impossible to reduce in the future. This will only place future taxpayers on the hook to maintain the increased levels of spending being suggested by some in Madison today. 

We must be wise with this money and the best way we can do that is returning it to you. I believe doing so will fuel economic growth and help our economy to continue its recovery from the effects of the pandemic.

I support the calls by Senate Majority Leader Devin LeMahieu and Assembly Speaker Robin Vos to use this money to cut your taxes. I look forward to working with them on a plan on how best to return this money to you.