Voters in Adams, Waushara counties approve Fair Maps referendums on Tuesday

Matt Rothschild of the Democracy Campaign spoke to a gathering in Montello last year on the Fair Maps effort. Marquette County voters approved a Fair Maps referendum last year.


Add two more counties to the growing list of Wisconsin counties allowing its voters to voice their opinion on Fair Maps, the statewide effort to end gerrymandering.

On Tuesday, Nov. 3, Adams and Waushara County voters easily passed non binding advisory referenda.

In Adams County, the vote was 6,759 (64%) to 3,897(36%).

In Waushara County the vote was 8,074 (64%) to 4,439 (36%), so both ballot issues passed with more than 60% of the vote.

In addition to Adams and Waushara counties, eight additional counties had the Fair Maps referendum on their ballots on Tuesday, as did three municipalities. 

Check back in the next couple of weeks for more information on the highly popular Fair Maps effort. 

Republicans retain 6th Congressional, 14th State Senate, 41st State Assembly, and 42nd State Assembly seats

The Republicans who easily won in Green Lake County carried their success onto their broader contests Tuesday as Glen Grothman, Joan Ballweg, Alex Dallman, and Jon Plumer easily defeated their Democrat Party challengers.

All of them won at least 60 percent of the votes cast.

Grothman, the incumbent 6th Congressional District Republican Congressman defeated Democrat Jessica King, 198,004 (60%) to 130,983 (40%).

Ballweg, the former 41st State Assembly Republican rep from Markesan, defeated Joni Anderson, 49,136 (66%) to 25,659 (34%) in the 14th State Senate race.

Dallman turned back Democrat Nate Zimdars, 14,585 (60%) to 8,380 (35%) in the district wide race for the 41st State Assembly. Independent Jesan Bartz had 1,317 (5%) of the votes cast.

In the 42nd State Assembly race, incumbent Jon Plummer turned back Democrat Melissa Arndt, 15,503 (61%) to 9,722 (39%).


Green Lake County remains red as all Republicans win



All of the Republican candidates on the Nov. 3 ballot in Green Lake County came away victorious Tuesday. This was not a surprise as the county continues to be a GOP stronghold.


Presidential Race

Republican incumbent Donald Trump 3,489

Democrat Joseph Biden 1,608


6th Congressional District

Republican incumbent Glenn Grothman 3,958

Democrat Jessica King 1,515


14th State Senate

Republican Joan Ballweg  4,165

Democrat Joni Anderson 1,308


41st State Assembly

Republican Alex Dallman 3,248

Democrat Nate Zimdars 1,165

Independent Jean Bartz 145


42nd State Assembly

Republican Jon Plumer 687

Democrat  Melissa Arndt 209


Look for more articles on the election in the coming days.

Uphill battle for our guy Democrat Nate Zimdars as he seeks win in gerrymandered 41st State Assembly District


Nobody said it would be easy, not even Nate Zimdars.

But heading into Tuesday’s election, Zimdars, running as a Democrat, faced an uphill battle. First, the 41st State Assembly District has long been a Republican stronghold (just ask Joan Ballweg), 

Second, in the Aug. 11 primary election this year Zimdars pulled in 3,098 votes. He was unopposed. His opponent on Tuesday, Republican Alex Dallman, did slightly better in August with 3,392 votes. But Dallman was competing against three other Republicans who gained another 3,494 votes. In other words, in August there were 6,886 votes cast for Republicans. 

Contrast this with Zimdars’ 3,392 votes and it is clear that the Republican vote total was roughly double that of the Democrat.

Of course, this was just a primary and primaries typically don’t produce high levels of voter turnout. In fact, since there were four candidates running on the Republican side, it could be said that the almost 7,000 Republican votes were there primarily because this was a contested primary.

But wait, let’s go back and look at the vote totals the last time there was a race in the 41st Assembly District, in 2018. In that race, Republican incumbent Joan Ballweg easily beat Democrat Frank Buress, 5,205 to 2,160 in Green Lake County. Ballweg also did well throughout the district as she topped Buress,15,257 (63%) to 8,984 (37%).

So what does all this mean? Simply put, the odds of Zimdars beating Dallman–at least based on past voting–are remote, not only in Green Lake County, but in the district as a whole. It is possible, if the Blue Wave materializes, that Zimdars will do well, but upsetting Dallman, who has worked as a staffer for 6th Congressional District Congressman Glenn Grothman, and who has served as the chair of the Green Lake Republican Party would be a stunning upset. 

One can hope, right?







WWJD 545? We’re asking a relevant, critical question

There is a new sign on Highway 23 in Green Lake.

This morning we erected a new sign–one better equipped to handle the wind that made life difficult for our Dump> sign. That sign, which was positioned right across from the massive Trump sign on the southern side of the highway, was not well received by some Trump supporters. Read earlier post on how that was expressed.

This sign should be able to handle the wind. But more importantly, it highlights the cruel and immoral treatment of children that were separated from their families at the border; children for whom the Trump government is unable to locate their parents. Is this what Jesus would have done?


Note the Trump sign in the background, across Highway 23 in Green Lake.

Your rights when it comes to voter intimidation; don’t let it happen to you on Election Day

You have a right to vote. Whenever you go to vote in-person or submit an absentee ballot (including via an election dropbox), you shouldn’t be made to feel unsafe or intimidated while exercising your fundamental rights. Your voice and your vote matter. 

This is particularly important when Donald Trump says he is sending law enforcement personnel to the polls on Election Day to guard against what he says is voter fraud. This despite not providing any proof that voter fraud has taken place or is placed in November.

Voter intimidation is against the law. It’s important to know that you shouldn’t hesitate to speak up and seek help if something doesn’t feel right. Voting should be stress-free. If something feels off, trust your gut. There are resources available to help you and answer your questions. 

Here’s more information about voter intimidation and how to get help: 

Voter Intimidation Is Against the Law. What Is It? And How Can You Recognize It? 

Voter intimidation is a federal crime. Federal law says it is illegal to “intimidate, threaten, or coerce, any other person for the purpose of interfering with the right of such other person to vote or to vote as he may choose.” Many state laws protect voters from intimidation, too.

The ACLU provides a list of examples of voter intimidation. Some examples of voter intimidation include: 

  • Aggressively questioning voters about their citizenship, criminal record or other qualifications to vote. 
  • Aggressively questioning voters about their political choices. 
  • Spreading false information about voter requirements. 
  • Falsely representing oneself as an election official. 
  • Physically blocking polling places. 
  • Displaying false or misleading signs about voter fraud and related criminal penalties. 
  • Using threatening language in or near a polling place. 
  • Yelling at people or calling people names while they are in line to vote. 
  • Disrupting or interrogating voters. 
  • Looking over people’s shoulders while they are voting.
  • Photographing or videotaping voters without permission or in a harassing manner.
  • Other forms of harassment, particularly harassment targeting non-English speakers and voters of color. 


OPINION: Here is why Jess King deserves our votes and why Glenn Grothman does not

By Malcolm McIntyre

I voted a week ago for Jess King in her bid to unseat incumbent Republican Congressman Glenn Grothman, not because she is a Democrat, but because character matters.

Jess, a single mom and a product of a foster family, has a compelling personal story, plus she’s battled through adversity to become a woman worthy of our vote. Read about her journey.

Jessica King spoke at a meeting of the Green Lake County Dems & Friends last year.

Her positions on the key issues are also critical, but the bottom line is Jess is an imminently decent human being. And character matters, even if some think that when it comes to politics, it doesn’t.

Accordingly, I couldn’t vote for her opponent.  

Incumbent Republican Congressman Glenn Grothman, Jess King’s opponent on Nov. 3 is simply dishonest. His latest political radio ad says he is “crossing party lines …,” a late attempt to sway Democrats and Independents. Good luck with that Glenn.

The radio ad continues with Grothman (he is doing his own voiceover) claiming that he is “standing up to Republican leadership when they tried to get rid of the medical deduction.” Huh?  First, this was back in 2017 and since that time Grothman has repeatedly supported the GOP-led fight to eliminate ObamaCare, potentially leaving more than 20 million people without healthcare coverage. He also supports the Republican plan that would gut coverage of pre-existing conditions. And like his Republican cohorts, Grothman has not introduced or co-sponsored legislation that would protect us from those two devastating attacks on our health care.

Nor has he criticized Trump for his mishandling of the covid pandemic, which has resulted in the deaths of more than 220,000 Americans. Further, he has strongly supported Trump’s handling of the immigrant crisis and last year, at several town halls, he defended Trump’s building of a wall on our southern border. 

So why is he now saying that he is “crossing party lines,” and standing up to Republican leadership …” when his Congressional record is one of unquestioned support for Trump and the Mitch McConnell agenda?

In fact, in a recent study done by Axios, Grothman was identified as being the top supporter of the Republican agenda. Think about that for a minute. There are 197 Republicans in the House of Representatives and Grothman graded out as the most loyal, as evidenced by his voting record and public statements.

This answer is obvious, He is worried that the Republican voters who supported him in the past are now questioning their support, just as they are turning against Donald Trump.

The last four years have been an inconceivable disaster for the United States, and Glenn Grothman has played a role in this by defending the undefendable. And by refusing–like so many of his fellow Republicans–to speak out when it was warranted. So don’t believe this last-minute attempt to position himself as an independent Republican.  

It is way too little and way too late. Vote for Jess King on Nov. 3. Her character is unassailable. And today, character counts more than ever.

41st State Assembly candidate Nate Zimdars releases new campaign video

Nate Zimdars, the Ripon resident running for the 41st State Assembly District seat being vacated by longtime Republican Joan Ballweg, has released a new campaign video. View it here. or click on the video below.

Zimdars, a Democrat, is battling Republican Alex Dallman, a Glenn Grothman protege, for the opportunity to represent the district in Madison. Grothman, another Republican, is the 6th Congressional District Representative in Congress.

In the new video Zimdars stresses his ties to farming, having grown up on a family farm south of Ripon, and to public education. He is a member of the Ripon School Board. As he did in his initial campaign video, Zimdars stresses his commitment to public service. 

This is Dallman’s first try for an elected office.

USA Today breaks tradition; endorses Biden for president

In another break from tradition, the editorial board of USA Today has endorsed Joe Biden for president. 

In 2016 the board did not endorse either Hillary Clinton of Donald Trump. It did, however, ask its readers in 2016 to not vote for Trump.

In making the endorsement USA Today reported:

Four years ago, the Editorial Board — an ideologically and demographically diverse group of journalists that is separate from the news staff and operates by consensus — broke with tradition and took sides in the presidential race for the first time since USA TODAY was founded in 1982. 

We urged readers not to vote for Donald Trump, calling the Republican nominee unfit for office because he lacked the “temperament, knowledge, steadiness and honesty that America needs from its presidents.” 

We stopped short, however, of an outright endorsement of Hillary Clinton, the Democratic nominee. This year, the Editorial Board unanimously supports the election of Joe Biden, who offers a shaken nation a harbor of calm and competence.

Read full statement from the USA Today Editorial Board.

Join RC’s Center for Politics and the People for first-hand look at Trump’s war on the media and the impact of fake news

“Fake News and Conspiracy Theories in the Age of Trump,” a talk by investigative journalist Michael R. Isikoff, will be offered via Zoom webinar Oct. 20 by Ripon College.

The talk will run from 6:30 to 7:45 p.m. Registration is available at

A post-event recording will be available on YouTube at

The event is sponsored by the Center for Politics and the People, with funding by the Menard Center for the Study of Institutions and Innovation at the University of Wisconsin-Stout.

Isikoff is an investigative journalist and chief investigative correspondent at Yahoo! News. The moderators will be Professor of Communication Steve Martin, Ripon Class of 1996, and Henrik Schatzinger, associate professor of politics and government and co-director of the Center for Politics and People.

Isikoff will highlight the importance of a free press in a democracy. He also will address other topics and issues related to the media and the press during the Trump administration such as the idea of “fake news” and its impact on the election cycle.

Formerly, Isikoff was a national investigative correspondent for Newsweek and NBC, where he reported on politics and government scandals such as the abuse in Abu Ghraib and Bill Clinton’s involvement with Monica Lewinsky.

He also is the author of Uncovering Clinton: A Reporter’s Story and Hubris: The Inside Story of Spin, Scandal, and the Selling of the Iraq War, and the coauthor of
Russian Roulette: The Inside Story of Putin’s War on America and the Election of Donald Trump.administration, such

Organizer of petition drive to recall Gov. Evers and Lt. Gov. Barnes says she has the needed signatures, but does she?

Gee whiz. Can this get any stranger?

The organizer of a campaign to recall both Gov. Tony Evers and Lt. Gove. Mandela Barnes told the press yesterday that she had more than the required number of petition signatures to force a recall.

Misty Polewczynski told the Wisconsin State Journal that she had surpassed the threshold of 668,327 valid petition signatures required to trigger a statewide recall election, 

Her statement came after she told the Racine Journal Times the group had collected more than 620,000 signatures as of last Thursday. The claims came as a 60-day window to collect and submit them comes to a close. 

But wait, in an article posted online by State Journal, Polewczynski, in a Facebook group message that has since been removed, wrote in response to a question about why she had provided the number to the news media: “I would not pay attention to that number given to them!”

“Sometimes any press is better than no press. But like we’d give that out?!” she added.

She later wrote: “I’m going to do an interview this afternoon and will probably make up some crap to tell them. I like when they look dumb. Plus, they drug my name through the mud.”

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, which first reported the Facebook posts, has previously reported Polewczynski was convicted of forgery, writing a worthless check and bail jumping 15 years ago.

So, where does this leave the recall effort? Who knows. But we’ll keep watching for more information as it comes available, information we will share with you. 


Tom Stepanek, longtime local Dem activist, quoted in New York Times article on how Trump’s words fuel hatred

Another example of how Donald Trump’s words have consequences here in Wisconsin surfaced this week when Tom Stepanek, a former chair of the Democratic Party’s 6th Congressional District Caucus, and a longtime local activist, was quoted in a New York Times article that featured the following headline: 

As Trump’s Language Grows More Heated, Fears Rise of Political Violence

The article stated,

“In Waushara County, a rural region outside Oshkosh, Wis., Mr. Stepanek, the Democratic chair, recalled that at last year’s county fair, while he was handing out balloons at the party’s booth to a group of young children, a man approached him and said, “If I had my gun right now, I’d shoot all of you.”

Mr. Stepanek, a retired educator, gasped at the time. This week, he said, “That’s what we’ve been kind of seeing, that kind of rhetoric.” Four years ago, Mr. Trump easily carried Waushara County. Mr. Biden seems to be cutting into that margin this year, Mr. Stepanek said, although some people have told him that they don’t want to put a yard sign supporting the Biden campaign out for fear that their house will be vandalized.

They have a permission,” Mr. Stepanek said of right-wing extremists like the man he encountered at the county fair. “I don’t know if I want to say that. I don’t mean it literally. But they feel it’s OK, they can use that kind of language.” 

Read the full New York Times article.


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