PARTY TIME: Join us on Sunday, Sept. 8 for a Green Lake County Dems & Friends picnic

It’s party time in Green Lake. Join us for a picnic on Sunday afternoon, Sept. 8 (no Packer game that day) for a purely social event. No speeches from candidates, no canvassing assignments, no sign up lists for signs–just come and socialize. This is a great opportunity for us to simply get to know each better.

Things start at about 3 p.m. at the Buffetta house (W1186 Lillian Street, Green Lake). We’ll eat about 4 p.m. 

Provided will be brats, hot dogs, the trimmings, bottled water, plates and utensils. The rest is potluck, so please bring a hot dish, salad, dessert or anything else you want to share. 

Look for an RSVP email closer to that Sunday, so we have an idea on how much meat and stuff to bring. Check our Facebook page for any updates or additional information.

OPINION: Democratic Party presidential candidate Cory Booker is the real deal

By Malcolm McIntyre

U. S. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) is the real deal.

I’ve always known this. It started with his moving into a low-income tenement building in a high crime area of Newark in 1998.

Who does that when his law and Stanford degrees would have afforded him positions in law firms and corporate boardrooms across the county. 

Heck, he still lives in that neighborhood in Newark. Lived there while he served as mayor of the New Jersey city.

I had a chance to speak with him (“You sure you know how this cell phone camera works”, I asked). He did, and you and see the result here. 

Boy, he’s big. I would love to see Donald Trump try to physically intimidate him like he did Hillary.

Maybe we’ll get that chance. I hope so.

I know the odds are against this. I also know that the so-called debates, while well intended, simply aren’t the proper platform for experiencing most of the candidates.

When you get a chance to see and listen to Booker in person, you are exposed to his charisma, character, and strong passion for his beliefs.

I heard Booker speak for about 45 minutes. It was 5:30 on a Sunday afternoon in Hartland, an upper-scale community in Waukesha County, one of the state’s reddest counties. Frankly, when I heard through a friend that he was going to be in Hartland, I was surprised. I know too well how deeply Republican the county is and I knew how weak the Democratic party was in that part of the county.

But I was pleasantly surprised. There were about 75 people at the gathering of various ages, color, and gender. Yes, it was a mostly white group, but not completely. 

Clearly the Democratic Party is not dead in Waukesha County. 

Back to Booker. He is also a great story teller and I won’t repeat them here because I am trying hard to get the video that was shot while he was speaking. I want to share with our members here, and if I can with the other county Dems. Not sure if I will be successful. I am sure that Corey’s people have plans for the video and allowing us to see it may short-circuit those plans. Don’t want to do that.

Bottom line: if you can see and hear Corey in an environment like the one in Hartland, grab it. It will provide you with insights into the man that will help you decide who should represent our party in 2020. 


Health Care and the Environment finish as the top issues of concern


The final results are in and as expected, Health Care and the Environment, the early leaders in the Green Lake County Dems & Friends poll of attendees at the just concluded Green Lake County Fair, were the final two top issues of concern.

The poll, admittedly unscientific and definitely unofficial, but lots of fun, closed Sunday at the end of the 4-day fair run.

So, who participated in our poll? Well, young and old, male and female, Democrat and Republican (including 6th District Congressman Glen Grothman, a Republican and a good sport), and a group of young 4-Hers who, while too young to vote in real elections, cared enough about the issues to register their votes with us.

As indicated, Health Care, with 168 votes, was the top issue of concern, with the Environment close behind at 160. The Environment, as the table below shows, was the leader after the first day, but Health Care rallied and led the rest of the way.

Education finished third with 129 votes.

Agriculture was third with 65 votes, followed closely by Voting Rights with 60.

Everyone who voted was encouraged to make two choices with the provided smiley faces; most did.



Copy of Green Lake County Dems & Friends Issues Poll

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A table showing how some attendees at the August, 2019, Green Lake County Fair ranked the issues that may be keeping them up at night. This is an unofficial and admittedly unscientific poll.

Health Care gets most votes Saturday during our top issues poll at fair

While the rain Saturday night ended the polling prematurely, attendees at the Green Lake County Fair still demonstrated a lot of interest in Green Lake County Dems & Friends’ unscientific, completely unofficial poll to learn what issues were of the most concern to voters heading into the 2020 election year.

Health Care, the No. 2 issue after the first two days of voting–the Environment was No. 1–is the new leader with a three-day total of 145 votes. The Environment is now No. 2 with 136 votes.

Helping Health Care take over the top spot was a relatively large margin on Saturday. Health Care had 52 votes Saturday before the rain came, while the environment had 33 votes Saturday.

The No. 3 top issue after three days? Education with 111 votes.

Check out the table below for the day-by-day totals, plus the grand totals for the first three days of the four-day event.



Green Lake County Dems & Friends Issues Poll

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A table showing how some attendees at the August, 2019, Green Lake County Fair ranked the issues that may be keeping them up at night. This is an unofficial and admittedly unscientific poll. If you are attending the fair and have not participated in the poll, you can do so on Sunday. All are welcome.



Health care is Friday leader in Green Lake County Dems’ poll of fairgoers

Fairgoers participating in the Green Lake County Dems & Friends poll on Friday said that Health Care was their top issue or concern. Second was the Environment.

This is a reversal of Thursday’s results, where the Environment was the first day leader with 44 votes

Health Care earned 63 votes Friday, the largest one-day total so far.  A close second on Friday, was the Environment with 59 votes.

This means that after two days, the Environment is still the overall leader with 103 votes. Health Care’s two-day total is 93.

See the table below for more information on the vote totals. Our poll, which is new this year, is an admittedly unscientific and unofficial undertaking. So, what. We and the fairgoers participating in the poll are having fun, while also gaining some insights into the opinions of those attending the fair.


Green Lake County Dems & Friends Issues Poll

A table showing how some attendees at the August, 2019, Green Lake County Fair ranked the issues that may be keeping them up at night. This is an unofficial and admittedly unscientific poll. If you are attending the fair and have not participated in the poll, you can do so on Saturday or Sunday. All are welcome.

The environment and health care are the early top issues of concern after day one of the Green Lake County Fair poll

The early results are in and attendees at the Green Lake County Fair have spoken. 

Their top issues of concern heading into the 2020 elections are (drum roll please) the Environment and Health Care. 

Next up: Voting rights and education. 

Although it was expected to be one of the leaders, the Environment, with 44 votes, had a 14-point lead over Health Care’s 30 after the first day of the fair in this unscientific, unofficial, but extremely fun poll.

Although the big lead for the Environment and Health Care was a bit of a surprise (some observers felt it would be closer), these vote totals are only for day one of the four-day annual event. 

Today’s results could end up making the race closer. Today could also see voting rights (and its allied issues, such as redistricting) and education close the gap.

Trailing the leaders, after the first day, was Agriculture with 12, Infrastructure with 8 and Other with 5.

In total, 140 votes were cast on Thursday, the fair’s opening day.

Voting (such as it is) continues today, Saturday, and Sunday. Look for the final results Sunday night.



Fairgoers urged to sign petitions asking Green Lake County Board to pass resolution supporting nonpartisan redistricting

Courtesy of the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign.

There are 72 counties in Wisconsin. Forty-seven of the counties, well more than half, have passed resolutions in favor of nonpartisan redistricting or gerrymandering. 

Green Lake County is one of the holdouts. 

At the Green Lake County Fair, now underway in Green Lake, the Green Lake County Dems & Friends are asking fairgoers to sign petitions urging fair maps that will be presented to the County Board. 

Green Lake County Dems & Friends chair Linda Wilkens says she and the local Democratic Party organization are hoping that the county board will add Green Lake County to the list of counties that are responding to citizen demands.

She points to a Marquette University Law School poll taken earlier this year that suggested that 72 percent of Wisconsin’s voters support gerrymandering and nonpartisan redistricting. In addition, those 72 percent said they support a nonpartisan redistricting process such as the one now used in Iowa. Finally, 62 percent of all Republicans in Wisconsin are in favor of this approach.

For more on the issue of fair maps and nonpartisan redistricting, check out these articles:


We’re there: Green Lake County Fair

A visitor to the Greeen Lake Dems & Friends booth at the 2019 Green Lake County Fair votes for an issue that concerns him the most during the morning sesssion on Thursday, Aug 1.

If you are attending the Green Lake County Fair, which runs from Thursday, Aug. 1 through Sunday, Aug. 4, make sure you stop by the Green Lake Dems & Friends booth. This is the second year we’re out front and visible at the fair. We’re (our volunteers) are there from 11 a.m. until 8 p.m.

Additionally, make sure you participate in our first annual unscientific, unofficial, but very fun issues poll. We’ll post the results for each day on our Facebook page, and then tabulate all the votes and publish a summary on Sunday night (or maybe Monday morning).

Former MoveOn.Org director and Madison native Ben Wikler selected to head Wisconsin Dems

New Wisconsin Dem Party leaders: From Left, Felesia Martin, 1st Vice Chair; Meg Andrietsch, Secretary; Ben Wikler, Chair; Lee Snodgrass, 2nd Vice Chair; and Randy Udell, Treasurer.


Ben Wikler, a Madison native and former MoveOn.Org director in Washington, D.C., was elected to lead the Democratic Party of Wisconsin at the organization’s state convention in Milwaukee earlier this month. Wikler, who ran an aggressive campaign for the post being vacated by Martha Laning, received 1,006 votes from the delegates, while his opponent, state Rep. David Bowen, D-Milwaukee, received 233 votes. Bowen has been the organization’s first vice chair.

Also elected at the conference were Felesia Martin as the new first vice chair and Lee Snodgrass as the new second vice chair. Both defeated others seeking the posts.

Unopposed were Treasurer Randy Udell and Secretary Meg Andrietsch.

View more information on the new officers.

Here is additional background information on Wikler from the MoveOn.Org website:

“Ben Wikler is a former senior advisor, and was previously Washington Director, at MoveOn, where he helped ensure that the views and voices of MoveOn’s millions of members were impossible to ignore in the nation’s capitol. At MoveOn, he played a pivotal role in successful national campaigns to defend the Affordable Care Act and the Iran nuclear deal, among others. Wikler previously held senior leadership roles at and, the world’s two largest online organizing networks; hosted the podcast The Good Fight, which reached #1 on iTunes; and worked as Al Franken’s writing partner on two #1-bestselling books and as a producer of his national radio show. Wikler has appeared on CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, and C-SPAN’s Washington Journal; has written pieces in the Washington Post, The Guardian, and The Hill; and serves on the board of A native of Madison, Wisconsin, where he became a contributor to The Onion while in high school, Wikler holds an undergraduate degree in economics from Harvard.”




Marquette University Law School Professor Ed Fallone seeks Wisconsin Supreme Court Seat now held by Judge Dan Kelly

Marquette University Law School Professor Ed Fallone is making his second bid for a seat on the Wisconsin State Supreme Court. In late March of this year, Fallone announced his intention to run for the seat now held by conservative judge Dan Kelly, a Scott Walker appointee. Kelly was named to the bench in 2016. Kelly has announced that he will seek the post again in the 2020 election.

An article in the Journal-Sentinel earlier this year stated, “In 2013, Fallone’s campaign was dogged by the criticism that he had never been a judge. As he [Fallone] notes, Kelly was never a judge before former Gov. Scott Walker appointed him to the high court in 2016.

“Fallone said nothing in Kelly’s experience or education made him a likely appointee, and that his work on the redistricting case for the Republican party won him the seat. And since he’s been on the court, he’s demonstrated those leanings in his rulings,”

Fallone and Jill Karofsky will face off in a primary election on Feb. 18. The winner will then enter the general election is April 7, 2020.

Fallone’s Facebook page is at  

His website is



Judge Jill Karofsky enters Wisconsin State Supreme Court race

Dane County Judge Jill Karofsky has announced that she is running for a seat on the Wisconsin State Supreme Court now held by conservative state Supreme Court Judge Dan Kelly, who has announced that he will seek reelection in 2020.

As referenced in a Wisconsin State Journal article on May 2, “Karofsky’s announcement comes just weeks after conservative-backed Judge Brian Hagedorn beat liberal-backed Judge Lisa Neubauer for a seat on the court, ensuring it will retain a conservative majority at least through 2023.”

The article goes on to state that “The Supreme Court race next year is already taking shape. Liberal-backed Marquette Law School professor Ed Fallone, who mounted an unsuccessful bid for the high court in 2013, announced his 2020 run in March.”

Kelly was appointed to the court in 2016 by former Gov. Scott Walker.

In a email to possible supporters of her mom, Karofsky’s daughter, included the following information on Judge Karofsky: “A former state and local prosecutor, served as executive director for the Wisconsin Office of Crime Victim Services, and worked as general counsel for the National Conference of Bar Examiners. Born and raised in south-central Wisconsin, she attended public schools where she was a state tennis champion. After receiving her bachelor’s degree at Duke University, where she was a Division I athlete, she earned two degrees from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

“Karofsky received the WI Coalition for Sexual Assault’s “Voices of Courage Award,” was named the WI Victim/Witness Professional Association’s “Professional of the Year,” and earned a “Significant Impact” Award from a local organization dedicated to ending domestic violence. She currently serves on the Wisconsin Judicial Education Committee and chairs the Violence Against Women STOP Grant committee. She previously co-chaired the Attorney General’s Sexual Assault Response Team, and served on the Governor’s Council on Domestic Abuse, the WI Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention Board, the Wisconsin Crime Victims Council, and the Dane County Big Brothers/Big Sisters Board of Directors.

Karofsky has two children, a daughter in college and a son in high school.

Her campaign can be found at, on Facebook at, and on Twitter at @judgekarofsky.

Green Lake County Dems & Friends were upfront and visible at the June 8 Dairy Days parade in Markesan

Green Lake County Dems & Friends: Up front and visible at the June Dairy Days parade in Markesan, June 8, 2019
As part of our increased visibility effort, we participated in the parade in Markesan on Saturday evening, June 8. To view additional photos from the parade, click on the image below; it will open at its original, full size. Use the arrows to the left and right to advance through the slide show.

Learn how Green Lake Association leads fight to save ‘impaired’ Green Lake at May 4 Green Lake County Dems & Friends meeting

It doesn’t look like it’s in poor health, but Green Lake, one of Wisconsin’s great inland lakes, is not doing well.

Technically, the term used to describe its health is “impaired,” which means that it needs care and attention.

That label, “impaired,” was given to the lake in 2014 after a study of the state’s lakes was completed by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. In its report, the DNR wrote, “An impaired waterway is a system that does not meet accepted water quality standards.”

The DNR further noted that Green Lake made the list for its low concentration of dissolved oxygen and high concentration of phosphorus.

A DNR press release at the time added, “While Green Lake is still safe for swimming and other recreational activities, significant conservation measures must be taken in order to improve water quality and to ensure that this valuable resource will be preserved for future generations of lake users.

Fortunately, that diagnosis alarmed a number of academic, local, private, and public organizations. Collectively, they’re working hard to further understand what caused the lake to degrade, and just as importantly, what can be done to bring the 7,920 acre jewel back to good health.

On Saturday, May 4, Stephanie Prellwitz, the executive director of the Green Lake Association, one of the leaders in the battle to restore the lake, will provide a meeting of the Green Lake County Dems & Friends with an update on what her nonprofit organization and its growing list of partners have done and are doing to protect the area’s most famous asset.

The meeting, which starts at 10 a.m. at the Caestecker Public Library in Green Lake is open to the public.

Prellwitz has worked for the Green Lake Association since February 2013.  She has a MS in Biological Systems Engineering from UW-Madison and BS in Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering with an emphasis in Water Resources.  In the organization’s most recent annual report, Prellwitz asked, “Should we settle for the lake as it is, or do we work for the lake as it should be?”

The resident of Ripon then added, “One path suggests complacency with the present, the other implies a future-focused challenge. One path is surviving, the other path is thriving. One path is relatively easy, the other path is certainly difficult.”

When confronted with these choices, the nonprofit organization’s 12-member volunteer board of directors did not hesitate. “The board’s decision was unanimous and clear. We owe it to our members to take the higher road, to trek the path less traveled. Our organization exists to work for the lake as it should be.”

At its deepest, 237 feet, Green Lake is the deepest natural inland lake in Wisconsin. Its watershed covers 107 square miles, and includes, in addition to Green Lake County, portions of Fond du Lac and Winnebago Counties. Its shoreline is just over 27 miles.

The Green Lake Association offices are in Town Square in Green Lake. You can learn more about the organization by visiting its website:



Brian Hagedorn. Lisa Neubauer’s opponent in April 2 election for State Supreme Court, appearing at Ripon College on Monday, March 11.

The following is a slightly edited version of an announcement posted by Jaye Alderson, March 6, 2019, in Political PublicationsSpecial Event on the Ripon College website.

Brian Hagedorn, who is running for the Wisconsin Supreme Court, will speak at Ripon College, on Monday, March 11.

His talk will begin at 4:30 p.m. in Kresge Little Theatre, East Hall. It is free and open to the public.

Ripon College Republicans is [sic] hosting Hagedorn’s talk.

Hagedorn is running for the State Supreme Court in the election on April 2. His opponent is Judge Lisa Neubauer.

Hagedorn is a judge of the Wisconsin Court of Appeals, serving in the court’s Waukesha-based District II since Aug. 1, 2015.

Hagedorn served as chief legal counsel to Gov. Scott Walker for almost five years, where he managed litigation in partnership with the attorney general, served as the top ethics officer for the administration, advised on legal policy issues, oversaw judicial and district attorney appointments, and provided legal analysis on proposed legislation.Walker appointed him to the bench in 2015 and won election to a new six-year term in April 2017. He was appointed by the Wisconsin Supreme Court to serve on the Wisconsin Judicial Commission, which oversees enforcement of the judicial code of ethics.
He also has served as an assistant attorney general at the Wisconsin Department of Justice, a law clerk for Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Michael Gableman, and as an attorney in private practice for a Milwaukee law firm.