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. 

 

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 Avaaz.org and Change.org, 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 Vote.org. 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 https://www.facebook.com/falloneforjustice/  

His website is https://www.falloneforjustice.com/

 

 

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 JillForJustice.com, on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/jillforjustice/, and on Twitter at @judgekarofsky.