Molly Beck Profile picture
If your mother says she loves you, check it out. (Politics and state government for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)
3 Dec
The Wisconsin Supreme Court rules 4-3 not to accept a lawsuit brought by President Donald Trump's campaign challenging the Nov. 3 election results.
Conservative justice Brian Hagedorn joined the court's liberal minority to reject the petition for original action on the basis that lawsuits over recounts are required by state law to be filed in circuit court, where fact-finding can occur.
"We do well as a judicial body to abide by time-tested judicial norms, even — and maybe especially — in high-profile cases. Following the law governing challenges to election results is no threat to the rule of law," Hagedorn wrote.
Read 13 tweets
3 Dec
President Donald Trump's campaign says he has filed a federal lawsuit challenging Wisconsin's election results.
Trump has filed the lawsuit in the Eastern District, according to court records.
The lawsuit is filed against Gov. Tony Evers, state and local election officials, mayors of five liberal-leaning Wisconsin cities, and Secretary of State Doug La Follette (who, unlike other states, does not oversee elections in Wisconsin).
Read 10 tweets
2 Dec
WI health officials expect COVID-19 vaccine doses to arrive in a couple weeks.

Health care workers who see COVID-19 patients, residents of long-term care or assisted living facilities, people over age 65, and some essential workers will get it first.
jsonline.com/story/news/202…
People should expect to receive two shots, either 21 days or 28 days apart, to develop immunity to the new coronavirus.
The second phase will include all those from Phase 1 who have yet to be vaccinated, along with "other critical populations to be determined."
Read 4 tweets
1 Dec
Prominent GOP state lawmaker resigned effective Wednesday, story says:
.@rep89 in a statement says his resignation allows him to pursue opportunities in the private sector.
@rep89 “While the timing will never be perfect, our work over the last 14 years has left northeast
Wisconsin and our entire state in a better position,” Nygren says.
Read 4 tweets
24 Nov
Kathryn Rogers has lived — and voted — in eastern Dane County for more than 50 years. Now, she's 82 and the president is trying to throw out her ballot.

"There aren't enough adjectives to describe what I'm thinking," she told me.

jsonline.com/story/news/pol…
John and Renae Feldner of McFarland also cast their ballots on Oct. 20. John Feldner, 70, a retired high school guidance counselor, said they waited in line for around 10 minutes. The couple also voted early in 2018.

"They counted last time, why wouldn't they count this time?"
Barbara and Eugene Summ of Madison, are in their 80s, have been married 61 years and say they never miss a chance to vote.

The couple has been voting absentee in recent years and in the last year or so registered as indefinitely confined after Eugene underwent a knee replacement
Read 8 tweets
23 Nov
Doctors and health experts are no longer asking people to stay home for the holidays.

They are begging. jsonline.com/story/news/202… via @DaphneChen_ and @madeline_heim
@DaphneChen_ @madeline_heim Across Wisconsin, overflowing hospitals and spiking case rates are causing panic among health care workers and public health officials who are sounding the alarm that the state is about to enter the most dangerous period of the pandemic yet.
@DaphneChen_ @madeline_heim “The timing and confluence with what’s happening in Wisconsin, I don’t think could be worse,” said Amanda Simanek, epidemiologist with the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
Read 4 tweets
17 Nov
.@SpeakerVos says Assembly Republicans are not introducing bills, but publicly proposing ideas including doubling the number of contract tracers in Wisconsin.

Some local health departments have abandoned tracing efforts beyond positive cases because of the surge in cases.
@SpeakerVos Vos says Republican lawmakers don't have any bills drafted.
@SpeakerVos Vos says "nobody cares" when Republican lawmakers who control the Legislature are meeting with the governor about legislation to address the pandemic.
Read 4 tweets
17 Nov
BREAKING: @SpeakerVos is releasing "new legislative initiatives to help slow the spread of COVID-19 and assist Wisconsinites during these challenging times" at a 2 p.m. press conference in the state Capitol.
@SpeakerVos This is the first possible legislative action in Wisconsin on COVID-19 since April.
More BREAKING: @GovEvers has released a new COVID-19 legislative proposal, too.

Some measures it contains: Allow those out of work to immediately claim unemployment benefits, suspending for another year a requirement that forces people to wait a week before receiving benefits.
Read 9 tweets
16 Nov
.@bschoenburg and @DougFinkeSJR set the standard for political reporters. illinoistimes.com/springfield/ti…
@bschoenburg @DougFinkeSJR "Finke has been as rumpled as Schoenburg is dapper, wearing a sport coat almost grudgingly, it seemed, as if in sartorial surrender to statehouse rules setting minimum standards," @brushtoniltimes writes
This leaves the daily newspaper in the Illinois capital city with TWO news reporters, according to the paper's staff page.
Read 4 tweets
16 Nov
Latest COVID-19 data since Sunday:

4,389 new cases -- 70,205 active infections
12 new deaths
178 new hospitalizations, for a total of 2,274 patients
77% of cases have recovered since March
Seven-day average percentage of positive tests by person: 36.4% and by test: 17.9%
456 patients are in ICUs. 168 beds are available out of 1,466.
Read 4 tweets
11 Nov
Department of Health Services chief medical officer Ryan Westergaard in briefing with @WiHealthNews says Wisconsin is approaching a "tipping point" when hospitals are not able to save everyone who becomes ill.
@WiHealthNews Westergaard says Wisconsin lost control of the outbreak over the summer.

He says a big issue has been predominantly asymptomatic people who aren't limiting interaction with other people.
@WiHealthNews Wisconsin Hospitals Association's Eric Borgerding says staffing in hospitals are "stressed."

"Not only are we seeing demand ... just almost going at a vertical pace, truly, but it's coming at a time when our capacity to treat that demand is becoming more and more diminished."
Read 16 tweets
11 Nov
Mark Kaufman, chief medical officer for the Wisconsin Health Association, is giving WMC members an overview on how terrible the coronavirus pandemic is in Wisconsin.

Points of evidence: Graphs showing hospitalizations include curves that are nearly vertical.
Kaufman says many Wisconsin hospitals are at peak capacity and have activated "contingency plans."
"So, Wisconsin hospitals are struggling," Kaufman says.
Read 8 tweets
10 Nov
In a release, @GovEvers says tonight's speech "will call for unity and working together in response to the COVID-19 pandemic."
@GovEvers Evers: "I am concerned about what our current trajectory means for Wisconsin healthcare workers, families, and our economy if we don’t get this virus under control."
@GovEvers "So, I want to be clear tonight: each day this virus goes unchecked is a setback for our economic recovery.

Our bars, restaurants, small businesses, families, and farmers will continue to suffer if we don’t take action right now."
Read 4 tweets
10 Nov
Once again Wisconsin is reporting more than 7,000 new COVID-19 cases in one day.

Sixty-six more people died of the virus.

The state has no restrictions in place and lawmakers have repeatedly not answered questions about what, if any, plan they would like to see in place.
The 7-day average percentage of positive tests by person is 36%.

The average by test is 18.1%.

The COVID-19 outbreak is out of control in Wisconsin.
There are almost 62,000 people with COVID-19 in Wisconsin right now.
Read 9 tweets
9 Nov
While the rest of America focuses on election drama, life for those inside a Wisconsin COVID ward is 'all-consuming' jsonline.com/story/news/202… via @majohnso
@majohnso An observer might find the scene at University Hospital in Madison almost reassuring. But this is a vision of just how serious the state's COVID-19 surge has grown these last few weeks.
@majohnso The patients are calm because they are terribly sick and must be deeply sedated. The sedation stops their arms from flailing in fear and confusion, and possibly disconnecting their ventilators.

But there's another reason.
Read 7 tweets
7 Nov
White House officials are warning Wisconsin's leaders that more people will die unnecessarily if the state doesn't adopt a "more comprehensive" plan to combat the "unrelenting" rise in cases of coronavirus. jsonline.com/story/news/pol…
One model from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation shows between 5,000 and 6,900 lives could be lost to COVID-19 in Wisconsin by Jan. 1 if the virus spread doesn't slow down.

The model predicts the state could see more than 100 deaths per day beginning Dec. 13.
The White House Coronavirus Task Force, which monitors the state's outbreak, in its latest report is again urging state leaders to figure out a response that is more robust and unified than what's in place now.
Read 13 tweets
6 Nov
Chris Olmstead, deputy director for Trump Victory in Wisconsin, on Thursday held a conference call with Trump staffers around Wisconsin and told them to find volunteers to call voters in Pennsylvania whose absentee ballots hadn’t been returned. jsonline.com/story/news/pol…
"Today and for the foreseeable number of days until they decide they are done counting, we are going to be chasing our absentee ballots over in Pennsylvania," Olmstead told his team, according to audio of the call obtained by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
Soon after that call, at 5:19 p.m. Thursday, a group called Kenosha for Trump blasted out an email headlined "Volunteers Urgently Needed."
Read 8 tweets
6 Nov
The Trump campaign is seeking volunteers in Wisconsin to call Pennsylvania supporters and ask them to return mail ballots, three days after the election. jsonline.com/story/news/pol…
Volunteers are urged to contact a pair of field directors listed in the email.

The two, Riley Pella and Joshua Williams, are paid staffers for the Republican Party of Wisconsin, filings with the Federal Election Commission show.
"This seems deeply stupid as it seems to be a solicitation to commit voter fraud," said Richard Hasen, an elections law specialist at the University of California, Irvine Law School. "It's hard to believe this is real."
Read 8 tweets
5 Nov
A voter from Richland Center is suing Trump campaign manager Bill Stepien to try to prevent the campaign from requesting a recount in Wisconsin.
The voter, Elizabeth Pierson, maintains Wisconsin’s recount law is unconstitutional because only candidates who agree to pay for a recount can get one if the margin is 0.25 percentage points or more.
That creates an unfair situation, she argues – one where well heeled candidates can get a recount but others cannot.
Read 6 tweets
4 Nov
Wisconsin @GovEvers holds media briefing with state health officials.

Evers responds to President Trump without naming him, saying an election doesn’t end when a candidate says they won but when every vote has been counted.
DHS Secretary Andrea Palm reports another record of daily COVID19 cases: 5,935.
Palm says hospitals in every region are reporting being stressed.
Read 4 tweets
4 Nov
Richland County Clerk Victor Vlasak tells me the Willow clerk went home sick from the polls yesterday and he can't find her or anyone there to bring in ballots from the polling location in the township.

"I don’t know what we’re going to do … we need those numbers," he said.
Vlasak, who has been clerk since 1988, said this is the first time he hasn't received a call from all polling locations with voting totals.

He said everyone is due to bring election materials to his office by 4:30 p.m. today.
He also said he and his office haven't slept since Monday night.
Read 4 tweets