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Let me start with my personal thanks to the DailyKos community and progressive blogosphere for your active support of our grassroots movement to restore workers' rights and reclaim Wisconsin.

You have been with us every step of the way in our fight to end Scott Walker's ideological civil war and your actions continue to inspire me. I am especially grateful for the kind words of encouragement many of you sent me in the last few months.  

I ultimately decided not to run for governor, because in order to undo the harm caused by Gov. Walker's right-wing extremist agenda, we must also focus on winning back the state Assembly for Democrats in the fall. I remain deeply committed to doing everything we can to defeat Scott Walker and all his rubberstamp Republicans and take back Wisconsin.

Wisconsin has strayed far from our heritage and progressive values and therefore it is not the same state it was at the start of 2011. Our state now has the dubious distinction of making Wisconsin the worst state in the entire United States at creating jobs. Adding insult to injury, new research from my office shows that while Wisconsinites are working hard to provide for their families, Scott Walker is the only governor in more than 20 years who has sunk Wisconsin to the worst in the nation on jobs. We've never even been in the bottom 10 before now.

This record on jobs, education, and job training is unacceptable. Wisconsin simply must expect higher standards than Gov. Scott Walker and his Republican cronies have offered. For those reasons and so many others we must ensure this historic recall is successful and we must remain united in solidarity to deliver this a crucial victory for working families.

That's why I stood with Wisconsin law enforcement officers recently to join them in announcing my endorsement of Tom Barrett for governor.

There are a multitude of reasons I support Tom Barrett, but three things top my list.

First, under Scott Walker, the Wisconsin values of fairness, honesty, dialogue and openness have been cast aside.  I have known Tom Barrett for many years and he is a man of great integrity --€“ always honest, always ethical and always willing to listen. He knows that being accountable and honest with the people we serve is the most important part of being a true public servant.

I know Tom Barrett will be able to heal our state so we can move forward.

Second, I have always been impressed with Tom's ability to bring people together to get things done. As Mayor of Milwaukee, Tom Barrett transformed the Menomonee Valley from an industrial wasteland to a thriving eco-friendly commercial and recreation center that now supports nearly 4,000 jobs. And in 2011, while Scott Walker was busy ramming through his extreme, divisive agenda and killing good-paying rail jobs, Tom Barrett worked with major green energy manufacturers like Helios and Ingeteam to open new factories in the Menomonee Valley -- bringing hundreds of good-paying jobs to Wisconsin.

I know Tom Barrett will work tirelessly to undo the harm caused by the Walker agenda and focus on what really matters to Wisconsin --€“ jobs, public education and a stable, growing economy.

Third is a practical matter. It is clear to me that our very best shot at recalling Scott Walker is the candidacy of Tom Barrett.  He is well known and well liked. And as we fought the extreme Walker agenda, he was with us in solidarity every step of the way. After Scott Walker's rubberstamps in the state legislature rammed through their union-busting legislation in violation of Wisconsin's open meetings law, Tom joined thousands of other concerned Wisconsinites, not as an elected official, but as a citizen of Wisconsin.

After Scott Walker eliminated workers' rights, Tom Barrett then waged a battle of principle to protect working families. Despite losing more than $15 million in state aid -- the largest cut in the state, Tom Barrett refused to let anyone lose their job and fought to preserve essential services.

He also fought to ensure that public employees continued to have a voice in the workplace by implementing "meet and confer" language to require labor/management discussion and by extending civil service protections to employees who lost their rights under ACT 10. To date, Tom Barrett is only one of a handful of Mayors across Wisconsin who took these actions to protect workers.

Tom Barrett has also been a consistent voice for working people. When Scott Walker announced that he was diverting $26 million of the $140 million in federal mortgage settlement funds to plug a hole in his own budget deficit, it was Tom Barrett who stood with foreclosure victims and called Scott Walker's plan "unconscionable."

During the summer recalls, I wrote on DailyKos on how "Solidarity isn't just forever -- it's how we win." With David Koch and the entire national right-wing machine coming into to Wisconsin to take Tom Barrett out with millions in negative ads and dirty tricks, fighting in solidarity now is more important than ever.

I fought with my fellow members for more than 62-hours straight on the floor of the Wisconsin State Assembly in an attempt to stop Scott Walker from attempting fund special-interest giveaways on the budget on the backs of working families.

You joined me then. Your support keeps all of us fighting for our vision for Wisconsin. And I hope that the DailyKos community joins me now in supporting Tom Barrett and our campaign to end Scott Walker's ideological civil war and bring Wisconsin together again.

Originally posted to PeterBarca on Tue May 01, 2012 at 01:28 PM PDT.

Also republished by Badger State Progressive and Democracy Addicts.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Mr. Barca, your word means quite a lot here! (13+ / 0-)

    Our only regret is that you're not running yourself!

    "We the People of the United States...." -U.S. Constitution

    by elwior on Tue May 01, 2012 at 01:37:57 PM PDT

  •  Even though people here support all the (19+ / 0-)

    candidates, there will be unity like you won't believe behind the winner of the primary.

    This is Ground Zero.  We WILL win.

    "Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." --M. L. King "You can't fix stupid" --Ron White -6.00, -5.18

    by zenbassoon on Tue May 01, 2012 at 01:38:45 PM PDT

  •  If Peter Barca is still around, or if any (5+ / 0-)

    Wisconsinite in the know is, how are thins looking just a week from the primaries?

      Is there ant movement afoot to support Scotty's Republican opponent?
      It seems to me that a challenge there could be very effective.
    Just MHO though.

    "We the People of the United States...." -U.S. Constitution

    by elwior on Tue May 01, 2012 at 01:46:50 PM PDT

  •  I respect you, but Falk can win as well. (9+ / 0-)

    She's worked hard and has the support of many different organizations and people. Barrett has the support of politicians.

    20, Dude, Chairman DKE Gay Caucus! (College IN-09) (Raised IL-03, IL-09) Tammy Baldwin and Elizabeth Warren for Senate!

    by ndrwmls10 on Tue May 01, 2012 at 01:54:29 PM PDT

  •  Reality: Barrett is the weakest choice (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ruleoflaw, Byrnt

    Should Tom Barrett win the nomination, the chances of winning the recall decrease because he cannot offer a clear alternative to Scott Walker on jobs--an issue Barrett himself has described as "defining" during this recall.

    Under Mayor Tom Barrett, Milwaukee has double digit unemployment and has experienced job loss during his term. Thems the facts no matter how nice Barrett is.

    Kathleen Falk, on the other hand, has led Dane County to job growth and the lowest unemployment rate in the state during her term. She has the support of the state's nurses, teachers, firefighters. She has demonstrated a true commitment to progressive ideals with pioneering work reshaping the criminal justice system and fierce defense of the environment while Dane County grew.

    To win, Wisconsin needs to see a a clear choice on jobs in particular. Kathleen Falk's Dane County grew more jobs that Barrett's Milwaukee or WI under Walker combined. Source data from the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development (excel)

    The choice could not be any more clear: Falk for Wisconsin

    •  Are the Milwaukee job numbers you cite (7+ / 0-)

      for the City or the County?

      And if we're comparing Dane County to Milwaukee County, wouldn't that represent a matchup between Falk and Walker? After all, Walker was Milwaukee County Executive for 7 of Barrett's 8 years as Mayor, and for 2 years prior. How can we pin down who's responsible for those job 'facts"?

      "All war is stupid" - JFK

      by jorogo on Tue May 01, 2012 at 02:35:01 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'm Talking Narrative (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        No disagreement that there is no apples to apples comparison here. These are officials responsible for different jurisdictions and who had different responsibilities.

        But each of them -- Walker, Barrett and Falk -- will have to have a an economic story to sell.

        Here's Falk's: Kathleen Falk led Dane County to job growth and the lowest unemployment in the state.

        What is Tom Barrett's story when he tries to explain why he is a better choice than Governor Walker? I have yet to here a compelling case for him that goes beyond "he's a nice guy." He is a nice guy. But he's a nice guy that comes with baggage--not all of which is his fault to be sure.  But all of it is now his record.

        Data is from the State of Wisconsin.

    •  I think you need to be careful (18+ / 0-)

      about saying that Falk has the "support of the state's nurses, teachers, firefighters."  She has the support of the union leaders for these groups, but I'd like to see data before I would believe that she has the support of the majority of the unions members that those people lead.   Falk cut deals with the leaders before anyone else had even thrown their hat in the ring.  And that has not set well with people from all over the state and could cost her the primary.  

      Falk has also aggravated voters by her apparent assumption that the primary is hers.  She needs to show more humility than she has to date.  People don't necessarily like having the deal cut (as she did) without allowing input from those on the front lines.

      We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both. Louis D. Brandeis

      by 3goldens on Tue May 01, 2012 at 03:13:46 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Aggrevated voters? (1+ / 1-)
        Recommended by:
        Mike Kahlow
        Hidden by:
        Cream City

        Her campaign is incredibly grassroots, anyone can see that. Barrett is flying at 50,000 feet, she's at ground level. If anyone is treating this primary like it is theirs, it is Barrett. Lets try not to misrepresent this race, okay!

        And that whole union leaders thing is trash. A few union member Barrett supporters spoke out against the endorsement and all of a sudden it's a "majority". I call bullshit.

        20, Dude, Chairman DKE Gay Caucus! (College IN-09) (Raised IL-03, IL-09) Tammy Baldwin and Elizabeth Warren for Senate!

        by ndrwmls10 on Tue May 01, 2012 at 04:36:23 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  The truth is we Daily Kos readers may have (0+ / 0-)

          researched the candidates they want to win and we have come to our own conclusions about who is the least bought out. Walker is the most bought out, so whoever wins, we are ok. But, as my friend said to me the other day, "I have done all this research and made my decision and someone who hasn't even bothered to read up on the candidates is going to cancel out my vote."

        •  Well, that's your opinion. (7+ / 0-)

          I don't see you citing even one piece of data.  And calm the heck down.  Peter Barca came here and made his case for Barrett.  If you want to shine a light on Kathleen Falk, write your own diary.  But don't come in to one on Barrett and behave like a jerk.  Democrats in Wisconsin need to pull together once the primary is over.  Berating and bullying people is NOT HELPING.  Now, we're done here.  Move on because I don't care for your attitude.

          We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both. Louis D. Brandeis

          by 3goldens on Tue May 01, 2012 at 05:18:47 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I didn't, I was very respectful to Barca. (0+ / 0-)

            You misrepresented this race and I thought I would interject.

            20, Dude, Chairman DKE Gay Caucus! (College IN-09) (Raised IL-03, IL-09) Tammy Baldwin and Elizabeth Warren for Senate!

            by ndrwmls10 on Tue May 01, 2012 at 06:43:11 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  And P.S. ----- (7+ / 0-)

          I have NOT made up my mind yet as to who I'm voting for next week.  I'm keeping an open mind.  I just don't think your aggressiveness is the least bit helpful.  Defend your candidate since you've made up your mind already, but don't stamp all over those of us who are still weighing all the information we can get.  Your actions are a DIRECT reflection on "your" candidate.  You might try being aware of whether you are personally helping or hurting Kathleen Falk with your attitude.

          We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both. Louis D. Brandeis

          by 3goldens on Tue May 01, 2012 at 05:23:53 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I'll add to that... (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            3goldens, WisVoter, Cream City

            Maybe I just had the misfortune of having a bad phone bank experience, but last weekend I had a caller seeking support for Falk.  I all my years of getting political phone calls, I've never had a phone bank volunteer try to pick a fight with me over the phone.... and I was being polite.  Heck, I even had a Walker supporter call me in Fall of 2010, and they were cordial about things when I told I wasn't voting for the guy (and I wasn't as polite with him!)

            My wife and mom we nearby when I got the call this weekend, and when they asked what was going on, and I told them the details, they were shocked... both were on the fence between Falk and Barrett.  My mom said that call helped seal her decision... I haven't heard from my wife yet...  I wonder how many other callers that person turned off in one day because of their attitude.

            •  This may come as a surprise, but (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              that kind of stuff happens all the time. I've phone banked for a number of candidates and there is always the aggressive/negative volunteer. Again I question the decision making based on a) someone on the internet and b) an argumentative volunteer.

              20, Dude, Chairman DKE Gay Caucus! (College IN-09) (Raised IL-03, IL-09) Tammy Baldwin and Elizabeth Warren for Senate!

              by ndrwmls10 on Tue May 01, 2012 at 06:47:07 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  I want you to be aware, I am in (0+ / 0-)

            no way affiliated with the Falk campaign. I don't even live in Wisconsin. I'm just highly aware of what is going on there. If you let my commentary effect who you may or may not support, that says something negative about you.

            20, Dude, Chairman DKE Gay Caucus! (College IN-09) (Raised IL-03, IL-09) Tammy Baldwin and Elizabeth Warren for Senate!

            by ndrwmls10 on Tue May 01, 2012 at 06:44:45 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Cream City needs to take (0+ / 0-)

          away his hiderate of me. I did not deserve it and I will not stand for it.

          20, Dude, Chairman DKE Gay Caucus! (College IN-09) (Raised IL-03, IL-09) Tammy Baldwin and Elizabeth Warren for Senate!

          by ndrwmls10 on Tue May 01, 2012 at 06:41:48 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Grassroots for Falk, eh? (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          3goldens, pHunbalanced

          Not to be a hater but with the latest financial reports submitted on Monday, she had raised nearly a million dollars in four months.  The Wisconsin for Falk PAC had also spent over four million dollars on her behalf.  She and Tommy Boy are both political insiders representing the status quo "leadership" of the Wisconsin Democratic party and are straight up astroturf.

          If you want the candidate who probably does stand the best chance of defeating Walker, then Barrett is likely your candidate.  I just think Falk screwed herself over, as Jorogo said, with the extraordinarily premature endorsements and also the pledge signing.

          You want grassroots candidates in the upcoming primary, you have three to choose from:

          Doug La Follette (D) who has financed almost his entire campaign through his own retirement savings

          Kathleen Vinehout (D) who has been travelling all over the state and is relying almost exclusively volunteers

          Arthur Kohl-Riggs (R) who is a determined activist and is running his campaign with virtually no money, a team of fellow determined activists behind him and yet is still making his way all over the state to spread his message

          •  My bad, 3Goldens... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            That point was made by you, not Jorogo.

          •  Simple regurgitation (0+ / 0-)

            Yadda yadda. People sure do a lot of parroting.

            Barrett's plan to hold a special session will do nothing to restore collective bargaining. All the Republicans need to do is say "no." They are good at that.

            It's also ironic that people say Falk shouldn't discuss her plans to restore collective bargaining but, instead, keep them secret. You know, like Walker did.

            And Barrett's campaign is not grassroots. It's a campaign of the elites heavily focused on advertising. As we saw from his partial support of  Act 10 and for even expanding it to more unions, Barrett will be that sort of centrist who "proves" himself by distancing himself from the people who brought this recall to be in the first place.

      •  Very Much Agreed (7+ / 0-)

        I agree.  There are a ton of teachers not happy about WEAC's early endorsement of Falk, and without any real permission to do so by its members.  

        I got off the phone about an hour ago with a phone bank call from WEAC, asking if I was going to vote and if it would be for Falk.  I responded no, that while I have nothing against her personally, I felt that Barrett had the best chance of beating Walker and I expressed my unhappiness about WEAC's process for endorsing her.  The response that I got back was "I totally understand... and truthfully, I've been hearing a lot of that tonight."   I know in my own building Barrett is by far the name being tossed around the most - they know about WEAC's endorsement... they honestly don't care.  They are smart, engaged teachers who have been following things fairly closely since last year, and will vote for who THEY think is the best candidate... not just because Mary Bell and WEAC like her.

        •  Thanks for this supporting information. (5+ / 0-)

          My husband is a retired teacher, and when it was announced that WEAC had signed on with Falk without consulting the membership, he was stunned.  

          We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both. Louis D. Brandeis

          by 3goldens on Tue May 01, 2012 at 06:36:34 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Same reaction came from teachers (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            3goldens, pHunbalanced

            and WEAC members in my family -- including one for Falk, but he feels that the WEAC leaders ought to have allowed his wife who is for Barrett have her say, too.  Basically, they and others feel strongly that WEAC is not running democratically, as it is supposed to do with their dues.

            "Let all the dreamers wake the nation." -- Carly Simon

            by Cream City on Wed May 02, 2012 at 07:58:56 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  A lack of political savvy in how they handled the (5+ / 0-)

        endorsement.  We can not have mistakes like that again.
        Falk, WEAC, AFSCME all needed to more patiently think through how they proceeded.  

        I see that as a political ding on Falk and her team for not seeing that their actions had fallout.  I like her bio, but we this will be a battle of political maneuvering.

      •  Exactly. I just talked with Mahlon Mitchell (9+ / 0-)

        (name-dropping alert!) at a Barrett event -- it was packed; he is fired up, and so are we! -- and I would note that no Wisconsin firefighter is more noteworthy than the marvelous Mahlon Mitchell for his role in bringing the firefighters (and their bagpipes!) into the protests and right into the Capitol rotunda.

        I also have a lot of teachers in my family, WEAC members, and they note that they were not asked about the endorsement.  Of course, they're still steamed about their union leaders not asking them about the NON-endorsement by WEAC of the Democratic candidate for governor in 2010.  That action of WEAC leaders contributed to low turnout and to the win for Walker.

        I always have been pro-union -- although I never have had collective bargaining rights to be able to be in a union -- but the (in)action of WEAC in 2010 turned me off.  I still supported the unions last spring, but that the teachers let WEAC continue to act without canvassing membership, and continue to act so destructively for the Dems, is ticking me off.  

        Union members:  I want to support you, but you have to support smarter leaders.  They're messing with my life and my livelihood and my Wisconsin, too, but only you union members can do something about your leaders.

        "Let all the dreamers wake the nation." -- Carly Simon

        by Cream City on Tue May 01, 2012 at 06:37:05 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  It's kinda weird to assign sole credit or blame (4+ / 0-)

      to people who run cities or counties for unemployment rates there. They often do play a role but rarely a decisive one. Madison is a very different place from Milwaukee.

      •  perception=reality (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        I suspect you'd have no problem assigning sole credit/blame for Walker's jobs record. Tom Barrett has had no problem calling jobs "defining" in this race. It's the way this game is played regardless of how free of nuance it is.

        You're right though.  Madison is a different place than Milwaukee.

        It's a place with low unemployment and job growth. Milwaukee is not.

        It's where Russ Feingold and Jim Doyle are from. Name the last statewide elected official from Milwaukee who is not a multimillionaire.

        The point here is not a policy point.

        It's a political point. Barrett is not the strongest candidate because he has just as much if not more baggage than any other candidate in the race save Scott Walker himself.

        To assume otherwise is unwise and the argument that he's better equipped to win despite history and his city's performance is a deeply flawed one.

        •  I do with Walker as well but Walker and his (0+ / 0-)

          legislature have more control over policies than mayors. The argument you're making now is a good one but it's quite a bit different from the argument you made in the previous comment.

          •  How? (0+ / 0-)

            The argument is the same. Tom Barrett will get clobbered over Milwaukee's poor economic conditions. Rightly, wrongly, whatever. Doesn't matter. It will happen. And it is a serious drawback in an election that Barrett himself has said will focus on jobs.

            So an independent voter could have one of two choices in June:

            Vote for Falk instead of Walker. Her county grew jobs and kept unemployment low.

            Vote for Barrett instead of Walker. As Mayor he is not actually responsible for Milwaukee's poor economy. But he's nice.

            Peter's diary makes an "electibility" argument that does not reflect the real challenges a Barrett candidacy adds to an already uphill recall battle. And it ignores Kathleen's real strengths. His prerogative to be sure. But I think he's way off the mark.

        •  Disagree, strongly, as Barrett (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          3goldens, pHunbalanced

          has been my legislator, Congressman, and mayor for decades, so I know his record and his work well.  He's got decades of good baggage in my book.

          But on the jobs point, I'll share a useful statistic that Barrett shared last night:

          If Wisconsin was not the worst in the country for jobs lost in the last year but had been even only at the average rate among all states, Wisconsin would have 60,000 more jobs now.

          Among those 60,000 more Wisconsinites with jobs might be my unemployed stepson in a Milwaukee suburb who is in the construction industry and my son and daughter-in-law who had to leave the state, as they work in the wind energy that Walker also destroyed in our state.

          And each of their jobs would have created more jobs.

          Now we wait to see if my daughter, graduating in two weeks, will get a teaching job in Wisconsin -- with more than 2000 teachers laid off in the last year alone and also looking for work in the same job market.  

          I hope that you will think of them and 60,000 other Wisconsites who would have jobs now and support Barrett if he is the winner of the primary, even though he is not a multimillionnaire or even a millionnaire -- because he has been a public servant for decades for us, and because he didn't marry money, as his wife ahs been an MPS teacher for decades, too.

          (Yes, he has a "union thug" in his family!)  

          "Let all the dreamers wake the nation." -- Carly Simon

          by Cream City on Wed May 02, 2012 at 08:11:40 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Best candidate in May and June.... (0+ / 0-)

            ...will never be Scott Walker. Neither I nor anyone I have ever spoken to has ever suggested NOT voting to recall Gov. Walker.

            Doesn't change my opinion that Barrett is far from the best choice.

  •  I'm in Maryland (7+ / 0-)

    and moving this summer to Indiana with family in Texas and Florida and NY.

    I have been keenly interested in Wisconsin since Gov. Walker reached my radar with his draconian anti-union legislation.

    That asshole simply has to go; for the good of the country, that asshole has to be recalled so that other Governors will be reluctant to comply when the Koch Brothers or their ilk pull the strings and make them dance.

    Donors get what they want and voters get lip service.

    That is going to have to change.

    I think, Therefore I am, ...A Democrat

    by Patriot4peace on Tue May 01, 2012 at 02:17:58 PM PDT

    •  Well said, Patriot4peace. (8+ / 0-)

      I'd also add that Ed Schultz said something the other day that really caught my attention.  He said that after the White House Correspondents' Dinner he was talking with some of the President's people and he emphasized to them that IF Walker wins this recall, that Mitt Romney will use that win to show that Walker's ways are what the rest of the states should follow.  He pointed out to them, he said, that a win by Walker could prove to be a really game-changing event for the Republicans and really serious problem for Obama.  There's a LOT riding on this whole recall effort and we need to beat that scoundrel soundly or the future will be extremely bleak in this state.  People that I know are standing firm against Walker.  They get it that a Walker win is not even thinkable.

      We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both. Louis D. Brandeis

      by 3goldens on Tue May 01, 2012 at 03:25:43 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  It is why the Koch bros etc..are willing to (4+ / 0-)

        dump as much dirty quiet money invest as much money as they need in an attempt to steal  win this election.

        The thought of losing the recalls paralyzes me w/fear. It feels like the future of the whole country is at stake.

        We need to get behind the candidate that has the best chance of winning statewide-in this primary. Letting egos, personal feelings, or apathy get in the way of victory is guaranteed to fail. Lets not hand it to them. Remember  'Eyes on the Prize' (MLK).

        Thank you Peter Barca


  •  Thank you, Representative Barca. (7+ / 0-)

    I value the opinions of people more informed and experienced than me. That's why I listen to doctors about health matters and leave making a proper souffle to a chef.

    So, I appreciate your input on this, and feel better about the race after having heard from you.

    Thanks for all you do for Wisconsin!

    "All war is stupid" - JFK

    by jorogo on Tue May 01, 2012 at 03:00:02 PM PDT

  •  Thanks, Mr. Barca, for coming here. (5+ / 0-)

    I also appreciate your insight about why Tom Barrett should be elected.  And thanks, as well, for all that you do for Wisconsin.  With people like you and Sondy Pope-Roberts in the Assembly (I'm in her district), I feel very well represented.  

    We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both. Louis D. Brandeis

    by 3goldens on Tue May 01, 2012 at 03:29:12 PM PDT

  •  Thank you, Mr. Barca for your diary (8+ / 0-)

    I appreciate you taking the time to explain some of the reasons behind your endorsement of Tom Barrett. Thank you for everything you’ve done for Wisconsin. After the Walker Recall is over, we will turn our efforts to winning back the Assembly!


    "We are slow to realize that democracy is a life; and involves continual struggle." ~ "Fighting Bob" - Robert M. LaFollette Sr.

    by Sand Hill Crane on Tue May 01, 2012 at 03:43:33 PM PDT

    •  I like the idea of winning back the Assembly! (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jorogo, thea lake, zephyr108, NoMoreLies

      Can you just imagine what a Democratic Assembly (under Peter Barca, of course) AND State Senate could accomplish under a Democratic governor?!  Wow!  And after what the Republicans have done to this state, they deserve to be banished to being nothing but "back-benchers" in both the Senate and Assembly for at least a generation.  They've rubber-stamped every single rotten thing Walker wanted.  Shame on them!  We won't forget.

      We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both. Louis D. Brandeis

      by 3goldens on Tue May 01, 2012 at 03:58:20 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Yes, thanks. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jorogo, OldJackPine

    It is always good to hear more opinions.  Nice of you to include the Daily Kos readers.  

    I have been resting up a little but will get more involved after the primary. We will not let you down.

  •  i plan on voting (4+ / 0-)

    I will be voting for Tom Barret, but if by chance he happens to lose, I will back whichever Democrat wins the primary.
    I have alot of faith in my great state, that we will come together and defeat Walker.
    I will also be casting my vote for Mahlon Mitchell for Lt. Gov.
    I can't wait until May 8th and then on to June 5th!!

    •  Mitchell is awesome (4+ / 0-)

      I wish I shared the same faith in our state's voters that you have.  :)     Maybe I have a harder time since I live in a very red area of the state (The "ring of idiocy" that is Ozaukee, Washington, and Waukesha counties)....  but I'll cross my fingers that some have seen the light, and that others bother to show up this time.

      The grassroots movement of citizens across this state has truely been inspirational - and I do believe that each of the democratic candidates embodies some of that in them (perhaps Mitchell more than anbody).

  •  I'm still troubled... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ptanow, 3goldens, NoMoreLies, rosarugosa

    by Tom Barret's comments that he wants to keep the contributions of public employees at the level set by Walker and his close association with old Rahm Emmanuel.  I don't know if he is just saying that to pull a few votes from the other side or what.  These young public employees are really struggling.  For years we held on to our benefits and sacrificed salary while the private sector got colas and bonuses and now they take away the benefits and think that is OK.  If he is going to keep contributions the same then salaries really need to increase.  It is ridiculous to think kids go to college for five years and rack up all that debt and then get the shaft.

    However, I will support whoever the winner is and work as hard as I can.

    Even Napoleon had his Watergate - Yogi Berra

    by Danosh on Tue May 01, 2012 at 06:27:52 PM PDT

    •  Huh? I'm a state employee (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      3goldens, peptabysmal, pHunbalanced

      and keep up with coverage of Barrett and his website and his FB page and have attended his events . . . and I do believe that, as a state employee, I would have heard him say that, if so.  I see and hear him say that he wants to put us on track to get back to where we were.  (It's obvious that it cannot be done immediately, with biennial state budgets and with local budgets up to locales.)

      Your source?

      "Let all the dreamers wake the nation." -- Carly Simon

      by Cream City on Tue May 01, 2012 at 06:42:18 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Wish I Could Remember (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        But, I am sure that he said that he wants to keep contributions at what they are because the union agreed with it.  They may have had a gun at their head but he feels that they agreed to the increases so it is no problem.  Perhaps someone can find that statement.

        Even Napoleon had his Watergate - Yogi Berra

        by Danosh on Tue May 01, 2012 at 06:47:57 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Just found it. (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          3goldens, rosarugosa, Sark Svemes

          Sorry, but I'm old and don't know how to do all the link stuff but it is in a JSonline article dated April 14, 2012 when they compared the positions of Falk & Barrett.  Barrett is quoted as saying that union leaders have agreed to those levels and that they can live with that but not losing collective bargaining.

          Even Napoleon had his Watergate - Yogi Berra

          by Danosh on Tue May 01, 2012 at 06:54:27 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Well, Cream City? (0+ / 0-)

            A vote for Barrett is a vote to continue taking thousands out of your pocket every year.  Falk is the only one who has clearly lined up behind union employees. I just don't see that Barrett is any different than Walker when it comes to hitting us in the pocketbook.  Some school districts have even increased contributions to 15%.  If a line isn't drawn and the state just keeps increasing contributions you can kiss your future goodbye.  And, don't forget, those interest rates on student loans may be going up this summer.  Barrett has to clearly say that he will put things back the way they were.  Period!

            Even Napoleon had his Watergate - Yogi Berra

            by Danosh on Tue May 01, 2012 at 08:16:40 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  You realize that Falk (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Cream City, 3goldens

              has been touting the fact that as Dane County Executive she cut public employee wages/benefits since the day she announced her run for Governor, right?

              Has she said that she will restore the cuts to wages and benefits for public employees all across the state? I don't think she has.

              •  I see that at the link in this thread (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                3goldens, pHunbalanced

                about her cutting pay and benefits to her public employees, which I didn't know, nor that she actually proudly publicizes it even now in her campaign.  Yikes.  That was pre-Walker, so she didn't even have to do so under Act 10.

                "Let all the dreamers wake the nation." -- Carly Simon

                by Cream City on Wed May 02, 2012 at 05:29:12 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  She's touting *negotiation* (0+ / 0-)

                Something the Governor clearly doesn't do, and something Mayor Barrett didn't do in his last round of benefit cuts in Milwaukee. Not a slight. Just a fact.

                She worked with unions for a plan that every party could accept -- even if it did not delight everyone.

                •  Agree/Disagree (0+ / 0-)

                  She's touting "saving the taxpayers money"--which is one of Walker's talking points. AFSCME even sent mailers out on her behalf saying that she generated "cost savings" (cutting wages) by negotiating away wages.

                  But yes, she is also touting that she used the collective bargaining process, I agree with you on that point.

                •  You appear to be entirely unaware (0+ / 0-)

                  that Barrett met with his city workers and set a policy that they always will have a place at the table to negotiate, despite Act 10.  And that the workers were with him on doing what it took to avoid ANY layoffs of city workers.

                  Why is it that you don't know this?  And why are you misstating the facts?  Your statements are similar to those that I see on the conservative Wisconsin blogs.  Odd.

                  "Let all the dreamers wake the nation." -- Carly Simon

                  by Cream City on Wed May 02, 2012 at 09:37:48 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

          •  That's a very regressive cut in take home pay (0+ / 0-)

            If the reference is to shifting more health care costs to employees, that's just a cut in take home pay. A smaller checkbook.

            And, the less the employee is paid, the bigger the percentage cut. This is because it's basically a fixed fee. Some lower income workers have been very hard hit.

            Democrats should not be pro slashing wage cuts and certainly not so disproportionately.

          •  Link (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            Here is a link to the article Danosh is talking about.

  •  already voted absentee (5+ / 0-)

    and I sure wish I had been able to vote for you, Rep. Barca.  Almost wrote your name as a write-in.  I agree that the assembly needs to be flipped, and I applaud your efforts to take back WI from the crazies that now control it.  PLEASE keep posting here--we need to hear your wise voice.

    Wisconsin: It's war, you know. We didn't start it, but we'll keep fighting in it until we win

    by isewquilts2 on Tue May 01, 2012 at 06:29:10 PM PDT

  •  Thank You (5+ / 0-)

    Thanks Rep. Barca for all you have done.  My parents wish they had you as their rep instead of the idiot leader of the assembly that resides one county north of you.  

    Keep fighting the good fight, and I look forward to seeing a blue assembly come November.

  •  Tipped, recced and republished to (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    3goldens, pHunbalanced

    I started with nothing and still have most of it left. - Seasick Steve

    by ruleoflaw on Tue May 01, 2012 at 07:02:34 PM PDT

  •  Tom Barrett was not in solidarity (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Wisco Wherls

    I have a tremendous amount of respect for Peter Barca. He responded well to the call for leadership.  And I've always liked Tom Barrett. But I also disagree strongly with the following statement:

    "...he (Barrett) was with us in solidarity every step of the way."
    Actually, that's clearly proven wrong bythis letter that Tom Barrett sent to Robin Vos and Roberta Darling, Republican Co-Chairs, Joint Committee on Finance (PDF) . He did not take our position to "KILL THE BILL." Instead, he called for them to take their bill further. Tom Barrett:
    To avoid any favoritism among law enforcement personnel, the Milwaukee Police Association must be treated in a manner that is consistent with its peers, as outlined in Wis. Stat. 111.77.
    Offering up another union for Walker's union rights-stripping bill is not solidarity, no matter what anyone thinks of the union.

    Also, I have not yet seen where Tom Barrett called on Scott Walker to engage in collective bargaining after Walker left the table. That was one of our solidarity messages, as well. Tom Barrett was actually calling for passage of part of Act 10.

    Sorry, I don't buy it. We need to know the nominee will stand with us, labor, environmental, women, and others.

    (And, I also don't buy Dave Obey's efforts to bully people into silence during an election. It's an election, relax, people will have things to say.  Unity also involves respecting others even when they disagree with your candidate.)

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