The Wisconsin Idea began in 1904 with the belief that research conducted in the University of Wisconsin system should be targeted on improving the life, health and environment of the people of the state. The Idea was expanded into the political arena, led by the famous Bob La Follette, Sr., with the aim of improving the lives of the greatest number of people as possible.
The election of Scott Walker to Governor, coupled with control of the legislative branch to the a branch of the Republican party enamored with power has seriously jeopardized the Idea. This June we may take back the Governor's House and the Senate. But if that occurs, what is the plan to restore the Idea? Here are some of my ideas.
To rekindle the Wisconsin Idea, it is imperative that we establish a course of action that will repair the damage created by the actions of the last 16 months.
2. Enact laws that encourage voters instead of disenfranchising them. With no evidence of any significant voter fraud, we should revert to the previous rules regarding voter registration and voter rules.
3. Establish a non-partisan redistricting commission to take over this responsibility from the state legislature.
4. Certain offices previously decided by voters require professionals. At the state level the offices of Secretary of State, Attorney General, Treasurer, and State Superintendent of Public Instruction should be appointed. The county office of Corner, Clerk, Treasurer and Sheriff could be professional positions as well.
5. The question of judicial elections should be addressed. Are we better served by elected judges or appointed judges? This is especially true of the Supreme Court.
6. Pursue an amendment to the Constitution of Wisconsin that guarantees that the right of the people to form trade unions and other professional associations for the purpose of collective bargaining.
7. Convert BadgerCare to BadgerCare for all and structured along the line of Green Mountain Care, the single payer system of Vermont.
Sun Apr 15, 2012 at 7:17 AM PT: Addendum:
7. or MassHealth, whichever best serves the most people. A non-partisan commission could be utilized to research the topic and make a recommendation.