Wisconsin Family Action Legislative Update

WISCONSIN FAMILY ACTION LEGISLATIVE ISSUES
2019-2020 Wisconsin Legislative Session
Current as of December 16, 2019

(To view as a pdf, click HERE.)

MARRIAGE/FAMILY
AB 41/SB 49 Decriminalization of child prostitution.  (WFA opposes)

Despite intentions and motives of those authoring and co-sponsoring this bill Wisconsin Family Action believes this proposal is ill-advised because it takes a tool away from law enforcement who are trying to get minors engaged in prostitution off the streets, assumes all minors involved in this activity are being coerced and gives an advantage to the Johns and the pimps to recruit more minors into their nefarious work, including sex trafficking. A substitute amendment was offered by author Republican Senator Alberta Darling. This amendment improved the bill. The Senate passed the bill on November 5, 2019, and sent it to the Assembly where it is currently in the Rules committee ready to be scheduled for a floor vote. The Assembly committee has already recommended the bill for passage.

AB 71/SB 68Possession of child pornography (WFA supports)

This bill tightens up the definition of child pornography making it easier to bring charges against someone who is engaged in this activity. The bill passed in both the Senate and the Assembly. Governor Evers signed it into law in July as 2019 Wisconsin Act 16.

AB 111/SB 107 – Prohibiting so-called “conversion therapy” for minors (WFA opposes)

This bill prohibits certain mental health workers from actually providing real hope and real help for minors dealing with unwanted same-sex attraction and/or gender confusion. It makes it clear that the only advice these mental health workers can give is that which affirms, normalizes and encourages minors to continue with these beliefs and behaviors. The bill trounces on religious freedom of mental health workers and on the rights of parents regarding counseling for their children. This bill is in committee in both the Assembly and the Senate; no further action to date.

AB 201/SB 191 – Creating a nonrefundable tax credit for adoption expenses (WFA supports)

The intent of this bill is to encourage Wisconsin families to adopt children. This $5,000 tax credit piggybacks on the federal adoption tax credit and helps parents offset some of the costs related to adoption, which today can be very expensive. These bills are in committee in both the Assembly and the Senate. No further action to date.

AB 248/SB 262 – Removing “personal conviction” exemption from vaccination requirements (WFA opposes)

Wisconsin currently has three options for parents seeking to exempt their children from vaccinations: health, religious and personal conviction. This bill would remove “personal conviction,” which would make it harder for parents choosing to not vaccinate their children. These bills are in committee in both the Assembly and the Senate. No further action to date.

AB 439/SB 398 –Eliminating waiting period after a divorce is finalized before a re-marriage (WFA opposes)
Wisconsin law currently requires that after a divorce is finalized that an individual must wait six months before entering into another marriage, whether that marriage is in Wisconsin or another state or country. This waiting period is both reasonable and responsible, especially if minor children are involved. The state has a valid interest in the well-being of the next generation. Parents rushing into another marriage immediately after a divorce is not in the adults’ best interest and certainly not in the best interest of minor children who are already dealing with much uncertainty and loss as a result of their parents’ divorce. The bill is authored by Republicans with substantial Republican support as co-sponsors, along with some Democrats. Both the Senate and the Assembly committees have held public hearings on the bill. The Senate Committee has passed it, but the Assembly Committee has not yet voted on the bill.

      EDUCATION (subheading of Marriage/Family)
AB 108/no senate version yet – Requiring parental choice program schools and charter schools to provide instruction in American Indian history, culture, and tribal sovereignty. (WFA opposes)
WFA does not support more requirements for voucher schools. We do not believe this curricular mandate does anything to increase the educational value in any given school. It simply takes away from time that could be better spent.  We believe most schools cover this topic already in the course of implementing their curriculum across the grades. This bill is in committee; no further action to date.

AB 129/SB 111 – Allowing voucher schools to provide pupil instruction virtually (WFA supports)

This bill levels the playing field with public schools by allowing voucher schools to offer direct pupil instruction virtually—to make up for missed time due to extreme weather closings and also as a part of the regular program of the school. These bills are in committee in both the Assembly and the Senate. No further action to date.

AB 149/SB 138Funding character education in public schools (WFA opposes)

Character education under this bill is not defined—and there is too much room for “character” to be stretched beyond its typical meaning and understanding. The bill authorizes DPI to award grants to schools to pay teachers to receive “professional development trainings in character education.” The Senate Education Committee held a public hearing and voted to move the bill to the full Senate. As of this update, the bill has not been scheduled for a Senate floor vote. There has been no public hearing on the Assembly version.

LIFE
AB 128/SB 114 – Creating a tax credit for parents who experience a stillbirth (WFA supports)

This bill seeks to compensate parents who have had a stillbirth for some of the costs related to this heart-rending situation (up to $2,000). These bills are in committee in both the Assembly and the Senate. No further action to date.

AB 179/SB 175Born Alive bill (WFA supports with one concern).
This bill requires any health care provider present at the time an abortion or attempted abortion results in a child born alive to exercise the same degree of professional skill, care and diligence to preserve the life and health of the child as a reasonably diligent and conscientious health care provider would render to any other child born alive. The bill makes intentionally causing the death of a child born alive as a result of an abortion or attempted abortion a felony with a penalty of life imprisonment. WFA’s concern is that the bill has an express exemption for a woman who intentionally kills her baby that has managed to survive an abortion or an attempted abortion. Passed in Assembly & Senate. Governor vetoed.

AB 180/SB 174Requiring that women taking RU-486 be told there is a reversal to the abortion-causing drug (WFA supports).
This bill requires certain information regarding an abortion-inducing drug regimen to be given to a woman who is planning to have an abortion induced by this abortion-inducing drug regimen. This is primarily about RU-486. Essentially the bill requires that the woman be told that the first drug in the regimen may not result in an immediate abortion and that if she acts quickly, she can reverse the effects of the first drug and perhaps save her baby. This information would be added to the Woman’s Right to Know publication. The bill also requires that any place an abortion takes place, including a hospital, certain information must be collected and reported. The bill adds to what the law already requires abortionists to report. Passed in Assembly & Senate. Governor vetoed.

AB 181/SB 199 – Stopping taxpayer funded Medicaid payments from going to most abortion providers (WFA supports).
This bill generally prohibits an entity that does abortions from receiving Medicaid payments. This bill is effectively dead with the legislature having voted on AB 183/SB 187.

AB 182/SB 173 – Prohibiting abortions based on sex, race, nationality, ethnicity or disability (WFA supports with one concern).
Our concern is that the bill has an exception related to disability. That exception deals with a situation where medical professionals determine an unborn baby has a disability that is deemed “fatal,” meaning the child is unlikely to survive outside the womb and the condition is not treatable. We believe this is an unnecessary exception. Passed in Assembly & Senate. Governor vetoed.

AB 183/SB 187 – Stopping taxpayer funded Medicaid payments from going to most abortion providers (WFA supports).
This bill generally prohibits an entity that does abortions from receiving Medicaid payments. Passed in Assembly & Senate. Governor vetoed.

AB 590/SB 524 –Prohibits the sale and use of the body parts of aborted babies, requires reporting of the sex and any fetal anomaly of an aborted baby, and requires proper final disposition of an aborted baby (WFA supports)
This bill has been introduced in prior legislative sessions. Even with a Republican governor and strong Republican majorities in the Senate and the Assembly, the bill has never received a floor vote. Current Republican leadership does not seem inclined to move these bills at all. The bills are currently in committee in both the Senate and the Assembly; no public hearing has been scheduled.

LIBERTY
AB 185/SB 197 – Changing how WI’s electoral votes are allocated (WFA opposes)
This bill erodes the Electoral College. Instead of awarding WI’s 10 electoral votes to the presidential candidate who wins the popular vote in our state, those 10 votes would go to the presidential candidate who wins the national popular vote. These bills are in committee in both the Assembly and the Senate. No further action to date.

MISCELLANEOUS
SB 577/no Assembly version to date – Decriminalizing 28 grams or less of marijuana (WFA opposes).
This bill makes a number of changes in the current law as it relates to bringing charges against a person who possesses, attempts to possess, possesses with the intent to manufacture, distribute, or deliver marijuana. WFA believes marijuana is a gateway drug that leads to using other harder drugs and that marijuana use in and of itself can significantly impair judgment and alter behavior. Twenty-eight grams of marijuana is the equivalent of over 80 “joints.” The bill is currently in committee; no further action to date.

AJR 106/SJR 75 – Renaming the decorated tree in the capitol rotunda during the Christmas holiday season as the Wisconsin State Christmas Tree (WFA supports).
These joint resolutions reflect the long-standing tradition of referring to the tree in the capitol rotunda during Christmas as a Christmas tree, not a holiday tree as Governor Evers refers to it. The Assembly passed the resolution in November on a bi-partisan vote; the resolution is waiting for action in the Senate.

AJR 108/SJR 59 – Prohibiting the governor from using the partial veto to increase state expenditures (first consideration) (WFA supports).
This resolution would amend the Wisconsin constitution to prevent the governor from using his/her partial veto power in an appropriations bill (like the state budget) to increase state expenditures for any purpose other than what is provided in the bill that is presented to him/her for signing. A proposed constitutional amendment requires adoption by two successive legislatures and then ratification by the people in a statewide referendum before it becomes law. If this resolution passes both the Assembly and the Senate this session (which concludes December 31, 2020), then it would need to be reintroduced and passed again sometime between January 2021 and December 2022 before it could be put on a statewide referendum. The Senate passed the resolution in November; the Assembly has not held a public hearing yet on the proposal.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wisconsin Family Action Releases 2017-2018 Legislative Scorecard

Wisconsin Family Action Releases 2017-2018 Legislative Scorecard
9 state legislators earn 100% for their work in most recent session; 15 others have distinguished scores

MADISON, WI – Today, Wisconsin Family Action (WFA) released its 2017-2018 Legislative Scorecard, giving its assessment of how all thirty-three State Senators and all ninety-nine State Assembly Representatives did this past legislative session. The session began in early January 2017 and floor activity concluded in March of this year.

“Within our mission, we work on or at least track quite a variety of bills during a legislative session. It’s important that citizens get an idea of how their elected officials did relative to those proposals,” said Julaine Appling, WFA president.

This past session, two (2) senators and seven (7) representatives earned a 100% score from WFA, meaning on all bills scored, these legislators agreed with WFA’s position.

The 100% senators are Dave Craig (R-Big Bend) and Duey Stroebel (R-Saukville). State representatives earning 100% are Scott Allen (R-Waukesha), Janel Brandtjen (R-Menomonee Falls), Rob Hutton (R-Brookfield), André Jacque (R-DePere), Jesse Kremer (R-Kewaskum), Dave Murphy (R-Greenville), and Jeremy Thiesfeldt (R-Fond du Lac).

“Earning a 100% on our scorecard is not easy. We are proud of these state legislators whose body of work during this past session evidences courage and true commitment to conservative principles and ideas. We congratulate these nine on a job very well done,” noted Appling.

Legislators scoring a 95%-99% also distinguished themselves as strong pro-family, pro-life, pro-liberty lawmakers. Six (6) senators and nine (9) representatives achieved this score. Senators with these scores are Chris Kapenga (R-Delafield), Devin LeMahieu (R-Oostburg), Howard Marklein (R-Spring Green), Terry Moulton (R-Chippewa Falls), Steve Nass (R-Whitewater), and Leah Vukmir (R-Brookfield). Representatives achieving this score are Cody Horlacher (R-Mukwonago), Bob Kulp (R-Stratford), Adam Neylon (R-Pewaukee), Romaine Quinn (R-Barron), Michael Schraa (R-Oshkosh), Ken Skowronski (R-Franklin), Paul Tittl (R-Manitowoc), Ron Tusler (R-Harrison) and Chuck Wichgers (R-Muskego).

“We are also very pleased to recognize the excellent work of those in this group of lawmakers,” Appling commented. “Being an elected official is not easy. It requires tough decisions in pressured situations. We are grateful for those officials who consistently do the right thing.”

This edition of WFA’s Scorecard scores ten bills in the state senate and 11 bills in the state assembly. Details on scoring, WFA’s position, and the bills themselves are available in the Scorecard.

WFA’s 2017-2018 Legislative Scorecard is available online HERE.

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Wisconsin Family Action is a statewide organization engaged in strengthening, preserving and promoting marriage, family, life and liberty in Wisconsin.

Copy available online here.

Call TODAY: Move the Heal Without Harm Legislative Initiative Forward

Your legislators need to hear from you!

The Heal Without Harm (HWH) Legislative Initiative – SB 423/AB 549 and SB 424/AB 550 (Sen. Terry Moulton, R-Chippewa Falls and Rep. Joel Kleefisch, R-Oconomowoc) – would ban the sale and use of aborted fetal body parts and instead encourage the donation of tissue from children who are stillborn or miscarried for use in research.

Currently, SB 423 and SB 424 have received public hearings, but Senate Judiciary and Public Safety Committee Chair Van Wanggaard has indicated he will not advance the bills out of committee unless Senators make their support for these bills known. AB 550 has received a public hearing and will be voted out of committee thanks to the quick action of Assembly Health Committee Chair Joe Sanfelipppo. AB 549 has been separated from AB 550 and was sent to the Assembly Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee chaired by Representative John Spiros and has yet to receive a public hearing.

Please call your State Senator ASAP and urge him/her to do the following:
Support SB 423 and SB 424 and make that support known by contacting Sen. Van Wanggaard.
Ask Sen. Waggaard to hold an executive session on SB 423 and SB 424 and vote to advance these bills out of committee ASAP.

Please call your State Representative ASAP and urge him/her to do the following:
Ask Rep. John Spiros to hold a public hearing and executive session on AB 549 ASAP.

Don’t know your State Senator and State Representative?  Go to legis.wisconsin.gov and type in your home address under “Find My Legislators” or call the Legislative Hotline: 1-800-362-9472.  After you call your Senator, contact the HWH Coalition with any feedback you received.

Questions?  Take some time to visit our HWH Q&A to learn more about this critical issue.

2020 Legislative Priorities

At Wisconsin Family Action we are dedicated to strengthening, preserving & promoting: MARRIAGE & FAMILY (including the Economy & Education) LIFE FROM CONCEPTION TO NATURAL DEATH RELIGIOUS FREEDOM Below you will find links to the outlines of this...

Wisconsin Family Action Releases 2015-2016 Legislative Scorecard

Twelve state legislators earn 100% for their work in most recent legislative session

MADISON, WI – Today, Wisconsin Family Action (WFA) released its 2015-2016 Legislative Scorecard, giving its assessment of how all thirty-three State Senators and all ninety-nine State Assembly Representatives did this past session. The session began in early January 2015 and floor activity concluded in March of this year.

“Within our mission, we work on or at least track quite a variety of bills during a legislative session. It’s important that citizens get an idea of how their elected officials did relative to those proposals,” said Julaine Appling, WFA president.

This past session, three (3) senators and nine (9) representatives earned a 100% score from WFA, meaning on all bills scored, these legislators agreed with WFA’s position.

Read more here.

WFA E-Connection – April 15, 2021

MARK YOUR CALENDARS Call our office at 866-849-2536 to schedule a speaker from WFA or WFC for your next event!  EVENTS  _____RHINELANDER, WICrescent Lake Bible CampThursday, April 22, 20216-8pm♦CLICK HERE for more information and toregister for these events. MEMORIAL...

WFA E-Connection – April 8, 2021

MARK YOUR CALENDARS Call our office at 866-849-2536 to schedule a speaker from WFA or WFC for your next event!  EVENTS  _____ NEXT WEEK!WAUSAU, WICity Square Office Building500 N 3rd StTuesday, April 13, 20216-8pm♦RHINELANDER, WICrescent Lake Bible CampThursday, April...

WFA E-Connection – April 1, 2021

MARK YOUR CALENDARS Call our office at 866-849-2536 to schedule a speaker from WFA or WFC for your next event!  EVENTS  _____TONIGHT!GREEN BAY, WIPizza Ranch in AshwaubenonThursday, April 1, 20216-8 p.m.♦WAUSAU, WICity Square Office Building 500 N 3rd StTuesday, April...

WFA E-Connection – March 25, 2021

MARK YOUR CALENDARS Call our office at 866-849-2536 to schedule a speaker from WFA or WFC for your next event!  EVENTS  _____NEXT WEEK!VERONA, WIPizza RanchTuesday, March 30, 20216-8 p.m.♦GREEN BAY, WIPizza Ranch in AshwaubenonThursday, April 1, 20216-8 p.m.♦CLICK...

WFA E-Connection – March 11, 2021

MARK YOUR CALENDARS Call our office at 866-849-2536 to schedule a speaker from WFA or WFC for your next event!  EVENTS  _____ TONIGHT!LACROSSE, WI Black River Beach Community Center Thursday, March 18, 2021 6-8 p.m. ♦ DELAFIELD, WI Marty’s Pizza Tuesday, March...

Pro-Family PAC Announces Spring General Election Endorsements

Madison – Wisconsin Family Action Political Action Committee (WFA PAC) announced today that it has endorsed the following candidates in the respective races for the spring nonpartisan general election on Tuesday, April 6, 2021.

District II, Wisconsin Court of Appeals

Shelley Grogan

Senate District 13 (Special Election)

John Jagler

Assembly District 89 (Special Election)

Elijah Behnke

Fond du Lac City Council

Daniel Degner

WFA PAC endorses legislative and local official candidates who have either proven track records of strengthening, preserving, and promoting marriage, family, life, and religious freedom or who give strong evidence of doing that if they are elected. Judicial candidates must be Constitutional originalists (or textualists), show judicial restraint, reflect an appropriate judicial temperament, and eschew making law from the bench.

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Authorized and paid for by Wisconsin Family Action PAC, Leslie Harrison, Treasurer.  Not authorized by any candidate or by any candidate’s agent or committee.

Copy available online here.

Update on Vaccination Mandates and Religious Freedom Bills

Last week, a public hearing was held in the Senate’s Committee on Human Services, Children and Families for the following bills:
Senate Bill 4 – Deals with prohibiting certain state and/or local officials from mandating the COVID-19 vaccine
Senate Bill 5  – Deals with prohibiting employers from mandating the COVID-19 vaccine as a condition of employment
Senate Bill 7 – Deals with prohibiting local health officers from closing or prohibiting gatherings in places of worship during the coronavirus crisis

 Wisconsin Family Action president Julaine Appling testified in support of all three bills. Appling’s testimony on the vaccine-related bills focused on the right of individuals to determine for themselves whether they take the vaccine or not and reminded legislators that the state constitution clearly protects the right of conscience. On the bill related to closing churches, Appling noted that the law requires that churches be treated the same as other essential services, which some local officials had not done. The bills are scheduled to be voted on in the full Senate today.

Julaine Appling gave an update after lending her testimony at this public hearing. Watch the video HERE. For a full update on these bills and related legislative matters, listen to yesterday’s Home Front program HERE.

UPDATED: Thank you, an update and what you can expect re: AB1

UPDATED: 1/20/2021

Brief Recap
Important Update
What You Can Do
The Reality

Last week we alerted you to a bill that was in the State Senate related to COVID-19 issues. The purpose of this article is to provide you with an update and also to alert you to a public hearing that will be held this Thursday, January 21, 2021, in the state capitol on several stand-alone bills that will be mentioned below.

BRIEF RECAP

Earlier this month the State Assembly passed Assembly 1 (with one amendment), a bill related to COVID-19 matters in Wisconsin. Included in the Assembly bill was language that would have done the following:
1) Prohibited employers and state (primarily the Department of Health Services) and/or local health officials from mandating that a person receive a COVID-19 vaccine. (Please note: nothing in the bill would have mandated the vaccine. The provisions were about STOPPING, FORBIDDING any such mandates.)
2) Prohibited the state Department of Health Services and/or local health officials from closing or prohibiting gatherings in places of worship.
3) Limited the amount of time a public school can close down in-person instruction.**
**We alerted you to items 1) and 2) above, but not 3).

When the senate received the bill, senate leadership stripped out the language related to items 1-3 above. We asked you to call your senator and ask them not to pass the bill unless the above provisions were included.  We know you did as we requested, but the Senate proceeded to pass the bill as amended and returned it to the Assembly for what is called “concurrence,” meaning the Assembly has to agree with what the Senate has given them. To date, the Assembly has not met for that vote.  The vote in the senate was 30-2–with only one Republican and one Democrat voting against it.

IMPORTANT UPDATE

The Senate did not believe Gov. Evers would pass the Assembly version, but senate leadership believed everyone could agree that businesses, organizations, churches, etc., needed protection from people suing them because they caught COVID while on their property or at one of their events. Senate leadership got assurance from Governor Evers that he would sign a bill that focused primarily on this liability protection—and that’s what the Senate stuck with. However, Senate leadership immediately after the vote said they were not yet done with the issue and would be doing “stand-alone” (single issue) bills on several more COVID-related matters very soon. Wisconsin Family Action received assurances that this was true and that items 1) and 2) above would be among those bills.

Within a day, bills related to all three of the above-noted issues were being circulated for co-sponsors.  And late yesterday, we learned that a public hearing is scheduled for all of those bills: 

Senate Bill 4 – Deals with prohibiting certain state and/or local officials from mandating the COVID-19 vaccine
Senate Bill 5  – Deals with prohibiting employers from mandating the COVID-19 vaccine
Senate Bill 6 – Deals with limiting the amount of time a public school can close down in-person instruction
Senate Bill 7 – Deals with prohibiting local health officers from closing or prohibiting gatherings in places of worship

These bills are currently in the Senate’s Committee on Human Services, Children and Families, chaired by Senator André Jacque (R-DePere). The hearing will be held in Room 201 Southeast in the State Capitol beginning at 12 noon this Thursday, January 21. The overflow room for the hearing will be Room 300 Southeast. Senator Jacque is the author of Senate Bills 4, 5, and 7. The hearing notice is available HERE. Typically the bills are taken up in the order in which they are listed on the hearing notice, although the Chairman can at his/her discretion change the order.

WHAT YOU CAN DO

  1. Plan to attend the hearing and speak if at all possible. This is especially important for pastors and ministry leaders who are concerned about the reach of the state and/or local officials interfering with their church’s operation and ministry. Prepare written testimony if you are going to speak. Plan to bring 10 copies of your testimony with you. Helpful information regarding testifying at a public hearing is available HERE.
  2. If you can’t attend the hearing but want to let the committee members know your opinion on the bills and how you want them to vote, send them an email. You can email all 5 committee members by clicking HERE.​​​​​​  You can also call the committee members:
    Chairman Sen Andrè Jacque – 608-266-3512
    Vice-Chair Sen Joan Ballweg – 608-266-0751
    Sen Eric Wimberger – 608-266-5670
    Sen. LaTonya Johnson – 608-266-2500
    Sen Melissa Agard – 608-266-9170
  3. If you are not a pastor or ministry leader, be sure to forward this email to your pastor and let him know about the bill related to churches and the hearing on Thursday.
  4. If you are interested in watching the hearing, visit wiseye.org and click on “Live” or scroll down to a listing of the broadcasts for that day.
  5. Share this page/info with friends and family members who may be interested in these issues/bills.
  6. Pray! Last in the list but certainly not last or least in importance.

THE REALITY
Some have asked us why anyone should care about these bills, let alone work to get them passed in the state legislature, because it’s pretty much a given that the governor will veto them. That’s a legitimate question for sure. Our response to this is that, first, it’s always right to do right. These bills aren’t perfect. We wish they weren’t restricted to COVID-19; we think they should be broader in their scope and more general in their application. But in this situation, these bills certainly do what they need to do for the current crisis. Second, once the bills land on the governor’s desk, it’s all on him. He will have to answer to the public for why he wants to invade personal privacy and violate people’s conscience, medical decisions, and religious beliefs by allowing officials and employers to mandate the COVID-19 vaccine. He’s the one who will have to explain why he thinks churches should be considered “non-essential” in this crisis but abortion facilities and liquor stores are considered “essential.” Let him tell parents that he’s just fine with schools be shuttered indefinitely for in-person instruction. These bills will put Governor Evers clearly on the record–and that’s very important as we head into another election cycle. He’s up for re-election in 2022.

Many thanks for engaging in your government! Your voice matters regardless of who is in office at any level of government.  Good citizenship requires we engage even when we don’t think we will “win.” God calls us to faithfulness–faithfulness to the truth and to our duty–not to victory. We are grateful for you!


THANK YOU–AND AN UPDATE!

Yesterday we sent out two rush emails when we learned about the State Senate going to the floor in just hours to vote on a bill that did not include language on at least two important issues–language that had been included in the Assembly version of the bill, AB 1. The two issues were 1) limiting the authority of the state (in particular the Department of Health Services) and/or local health officials from closing places of worship and/or limiting capacity during COVID-19, and 2) prohibiting employers, the Department of Health Services, and local health authorities from mandating the COVID-19 vaccine.

We urged you to contact your state senator immediately and ask them to vote no on the Senate’s version of the bill because these two issues were not included. We know you did as we asked, because we have heard from numerous senate offices saying their phones were very busy yesterday!  Thank you, thank you, thank you!  Those calls are so very important!  One strategic senate office told me this morning that while their phones were very busy yesterday, they found the callers to be extremely polite. In fact, the staffer told me the callers were nice and courteous. This staffer was incredibly impressed. In case you don’t think how you speak to a legislator matters, well, here’s proof that it does. Thank you for calling and thank you for doing so with grace and civility. You have definitely made a difference. It is so true that for Christians, we must think bigger, look higher and expect more–of ourselves especially!

All that said, the Senate yesterday passed the Substitute Amendment to Assembly Bill 1 WITHOUT amending it to put back in the language related to the two issues I’ve noted: vaccine mandate and protections for places of worship. The measure passed with just two senators objecting: Senator Steve Nass (R-Whitewater) and Senator Chris Larsen (D-Milwaukee). I knew when all but 1 Democrat supported this measure what had happened. The Senate had made a calculation that the governor would veto the bill as passed by the Assembly. Senate members especially wanted liability protections for businesses, schools, churches, etc. so that people cannot sue them for getting COVID because they were in their place of business or at an event sponsored by the entity. That liability protection was the central part of the Senate Substitute Amendment, and Senate leadership had received word that the Governor would sign that bill. As a result, the senate made the decision to pass the bill as they had amended it.  Now it goes back to the Assembly for final concurrence and then to the governor for signing.

So what about our very real concerns for not having the vaccine mandated and making sure places of worship aren’t forced to close or to limit capacity?

As you can imagine, I was talking to senators yesterday about this. Immediately after the vote, I talked with a senator who said our concerns were going to be put into stand-alone bills and that these bills would be in circulation soon. I can confirm that this is true–and will give you the specifics as soon as the information is made public. The bills will need a significant number of co-sponsors, and we will be asking for your help to make that happen. Then, once they are introduced and assigned bill numbers and committees, public hearings will happen. We will let you know about those as well. The bills use the exact same language as what was in the Assembly’s original bill.


I’m encouraged by all this. I’m heartened that the new senate leadership, Senate Majority Leader Devin LeMahieu (R-Oostburg) and Senate President Chris Kapenga (R-Delafield), are listening to constituents and to us as an organization. We definitely need to hold our elected officials accountable, and I can assure you we will do everything we can to see that these standalone bills pass and go to the governor, even though he may and likely will veto them. I say let him veto them; November 2022 will be here faster than any of us realize (that’s when we elect a new governor).

In the meantime, I urge you to stay informed and involved. We will keep you updated on these bills and many others (some pro-life bills are already in the works) as we go through this legislative session. Your voice is unbelievably important. Elected officials do listen. I can’t say for sure that we wouldn’t be talking about standalone bills for the vaccine mandate and protections for places of worship if we hadn’t put some pressure on senators, but your calls definitely made sure they will be a reality.

Voter Fraud: WHAT TO DO

ENSURING THE INTEGRITY OF OUR ELECTIONS

Wisconsin Family Action is compiling testimonies/stories sent in to us by Wisconsin voters, like you, to give to the Legislative Committee assigned by Speaker Robin Vos for investigation into the integrity of Wisconsin’s election process.

If you believe you have experienced voter fraud or had problems at your polling place or any other voting issues, such as:

⇒Received more than one ballot in your name in the mail.

⇒Received a ballot without requesting one.

⇒Know of a ballot that was sent in the name of a deceased person.

⇒Were asked to do something, or saw something, you felt was unusual at your polling place.

Even if you aren’t sure, please report your experience to us BELOW so we may allow the Legislative Committee to review and decide if this will help with their investigation.

PLEASE FILL OUT THE FORM BELOW NOW:

 

Transcript: President Trump’s Executive Order Protecting Vulnerable NEWBORN AND INFANT children

Office of the Press Secretary

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 25, 2020

EXECUTIVE ORDER

– – – – – – –

Protecting Vulnerable NEWBORN AND INFANT children

     By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, it is hereby ordered as follows:

Section 1.  Purpose.  Every infant born alive, no matter the circumstances of his or her birth, has the same dignity and the same rights as every other individual and is entitled to the same protections under Federal law.  Such laws include the Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act (EMTALA), 42 U.S.C. 1395dd, which guarantees, in hospitals that have an emergency department, each individual’s right to an appropriate medical screening examination and to either stabilizing treatment or an appropriate transfer.  They also include section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act (Rehab Act), 29 U.S.C. 794, which prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities by programs and activities receiving Federal funding.  In addition, the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act, 1 U.S.C. 8, makes clear that all infants born alive are individuals for purposes of these and other Federal laws and are therefore afforded the same legal protections as any other person.  Together, these laws help protect infants born alive from discrimination in the provision of medical treatment, including infants who require emergency medical treatment, who are premature, or who are born with disabilities.  Such infants are entitled to meaningful and non-discriminatory access to medical examination and services, with the consent of a parent or guardian, when they present at hospitals receiving Federal funds.

Despite these laws, some hospitals refuse the required medical screening examination and stabilizing treatment or otherwise do not provide potentially lifesaving medical treatment to extremely premature or disabled infants, even when parents plead for such treatment.  Hospitals might refuse to provide treatment to extremely premature infants — born alive before 24 weeks of gestation — because they believe these infants may not survive, may have to live with long-term disabilities, or may have a quality-of-life deemed to be inadequate.  Active treatment of extremely premature infants has, however, been shown to improve their survival rates.  And the denial of such treatment, or discouragement of parents from seeking such treatment for their children, devalues the lives of these children and may violate Federal law.

Sec2.  Policy.  It is the policy of the United States to recognize the human dignity and inherent worth of every newborn or other infant child, regardless of prematurity or disability, and to ensure for each child due protection under the law.

Sec3.  (a)  The Secretary of Health and Human Services (Secretary) shall ensure that individuals responsible for all programs and activities under his jurisdiction that receive Federal funding are aware of their obligations toward infants, including premature infants or infants with disabilities, who have an emergency medical condition in need of stabilizing treatment, under EMTALA and section 504 of the Rehab Act, as interpreted consistent with the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act.  In particular, the Secretary shall ensure that individuals responsible for such programs and activities are aware that they are not excused from complying with these obligations, including the obligation to provide an appropriate medical screening examination and stabilizing treatment or transfer, when extremely premature infants are born alive or infants are born with disabilities.  The Secretary shall also ensure that individuals responsible for such programs and activities are aware that they may not unlawfully discourage parents from seeking medical treatment for their infant child solely because of their infant child’s disability.  The Secretary shall further ensure that individuals responsible for such programs and activities are aware of their obligations to provide stabilizing treatment that will allow the infant patients to be transferred to a more suitable facility if appropriate treatment is not possible at the initial location.

(b)  The Secretary shall, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, ensure that Federal funding disbursed by the Department of Health and Human Services is expended in full compliance with EMTALA and section 504 of the Rehab Act, as interpreted consistent with the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act, as reflected in the policy set forth in section 2 of this order.

(i)   The Secretary shall, as appropriate and to the fullest extent permitted by law, investigate complaints of violations of applicable Federal laws with respect to infants born alive, including infants who have an emergency medical condition in need of stabilizing treatment or infants with disabilities whose parents seek medical treatment for their infants.  The Secretary shall also clarify, in an easily understandable format, the process by which parents and hospital staff may submit such complaints for investigation under applicable Federal laws.

(ii)  The Secretary shall take all appropriate enforcement action against individuals and organizations found through investigation to have violated applicable Federal laws, up to and including terminating Federal funding for non-compliant programs and activities.

(c)  The Secretary shall, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, prioritize the allocation of Department of Health and Human Services discretionary grant funding and National Institutes of Health research dollars for programs and activities conducting research to develop treatments that may improve survival — especially survival without impairment — of infants born alive, including premature infants or infants with disabilities, who have an emergency medical condition in need of stabilizing treatment.

(d)  The Secretary shall, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, prioritize the allocation of Department of Health and Human Services discretionary grant funding to programs and activities, including hospitals, that provide training to medical personnel regarding the provision of life-saving medical treatment to all infants born alive, including premature infants or infants with disabilities, who have an emergency medical condition in need of stabilizing treatment.

(e)  The Secretary shall, as necessary and consistent with applicable law, issue such regulations or guidance as may be necessary to implement this order.

Sec4.  General Provisions.  (a)  Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:

(i)   the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or the head thereof; or

(ii)  the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.

(b)  This order shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations.

(c)  This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.

DONALD J. TRUMP

THE WHITE HOUSE,
September 25, 2020.

No, this isn’t a mistake. It’s happening AGAIN in WI – and we need to take action

No, this isn’t a mistake. IT’S HAPPENING AGAIN.

This week on Tuesday, September 22, 2020, Governor Evers declared another 60-day statewide Public Health Emergency (Executive Order #90) that begins today and continues through November 21, 2020.  He also issued Emergency Order #1 which mandates “face coverings” (aka, “masks”) statewide. This is the governor’s third statewide 60-day emergency declaration dealing with COVID-19.

We have been in contact with legal experts on whether the governor has authority to issue yet another statewide emergency declaration. They have advised us that just as his second declaration was illegal, so this one is as well.  At a minimum, this order raises questions about whether, for instance, churches and private schools have the right to exercise autonomy in this matter.

We want to reiterate that Wisconsin Family Action has not and will not take a position on masks or other the other aspects of the order that the governor issued under the authority of this declaration. However, we will oppose illegal actions by elected officials. Please understand it is the emergency declaration order that gives the governor the authority to issue the mask mandate and it is that order that is illegal. How many 60-day emergency declarations dealing with one issue does he get?  We agree with the legal experts: he gets one such order, not multiple ones done in a serial manner.

Meanwhile, while the attorneys deliberate regarding a possible legal challenge, the state legislature does have a way to stop the governor’s order. The law that gives the governor authority to issue a Public Health Emergency (Chapter 323.10) states that the Order can be revoked by the Governor issuing another Executive Order or by the state legislature passing a Joint Resolution. Obviously the governor is not going to revoke his own emergency declaration order. So, the quickest way to stop this illegal power grab by the governor is for the state legislature to take action by passing a joint resolution..

After the Governor’s Order was released, State Senator Steve Nass (R-Whitewater) issued a statement in which he calls on the legislature to take immediate action..

We believe this legislative approach is the best option to quickly counter the Governor’s newest edict. We are asking that you AS SOON AS POSSIBLE make 3 phone calls to help make this special legislative session and a joint resolution a reality:

You can find contact information for your elected officials HERE (just put your address in the area at the top right of the page).

We know this is a confusing and challenging time for everyone. We are hoping our state legislators will step up and do the right thing in this instance and act as a “check and balance” to the executive branch. This is yet another powerful reminder that ELECTIONS HAVE VERY REAL CONSEQUENCES.  Remember that as you vote this fall!

 

Action Alert: Gov. Evers Issues Dangerous Order/Mandate – Tell your legislator to support Senator Nass’s call for the special session and joint resolution

On Thursday afternoon, Governor Evers issued declared another statewide Public Health Emergency (Executive Order #82) that begins on Saturday, August 1 and continues through September 28.  He also issued Emergency Order #1 which mandates “face coverings” (aka, “masks”) statewide.

While the Order does include a number of exemptions or exceptions (such as, you don’t have to wear a mask when eating, drinking or sleeping. Yes, these are specifically delineated in the order), the order raises questions about whether, for instance, churches and private schools have the right to exercise autonomy in this matter.

We have been in contact with constitutional attorneys who tell us it will take some time to completely assess the Order and to determine if a lawsuit is warranted and if so to get it filed, etc. One major legal question is whether the Governor even has the authority to issue a second 60-day Public Health Emergency for the same issue (COVID-19 in this instance).

Meanwhile, while the attorneys deliberate regarding a possible legal challenge, the state legislature does have a way to stop the Governor’s Order. The law that gives the Governor authority to issue a Public Health Emergency (Chapter 323…) states that the implementation of the order can be stopped by the Governor issuing another Order or by the state legislature passing a Joint Resolution.

Thursday afternoon, State Senator Steve Nass (R-Whitewater) issued a press release in which he said the Governor’s Order was “illegal and unnecessary” and called for a special legislative session to stop the Order.

We believe this legislative approach is the best option to quickly counter the Governor’s newest edict. We are asking that you AS SOON AS POSSIBLE make 3 phone calls to help make this special legislative session and a joint resolution:

You can find contact information for your elected officials HERE (just put your address in the area at the top right of the page).

We know this is a confusing and challenging time for everyone. We are hoping our state legislators will step up and do the right thing in this instance and act as a “check and balance” to the executive branch. Wearing a mask should not be forced on everyone; the government can make recommendations, but ordering mask wearing and imposing a fine for not doing so is a breach of our individual freedoms and just may also encroach on our religious freedom as well. This is yet another powerful reminder that ELECTIONS HAVE VERY REAL CONSEQUENCES.  Remember that as you vote this fall!

US Supreme Court Once Again Oversteps Authority; In major decision Court redefines biological sex

MADISON, WI – Today, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its decision in three Title VII cases.  On a 6-3 vote, the court ruled that Title VII prohibits discrimination in employment “on the basis of sex.” Title VII is the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

One of the cases involved Harris Funeral Homes in Detroit, Michigan. This family-run business has the delicate task of serving grieving families. Tom Rost, owner of Harris Funeral Homes, had that in mind when a male employee of six years decided to start living as a woman and insisted on dressing as one at work. Tom held the employee to the dress code he agreed to at time of hire and was promptly sued. The U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling today dictates how Tom and other employers can run their businesses, regardless of their beliefs.

The Court ruled that an employer who fires an individual “merely for being gay or transgender violates Title VII.” Essentially, the Court is saying that the word sex in laws from the 1960’s, also includes sexual orientation and gender identity.

While many aspects of the Court’s ruling are troubling, the most concerning is that the Court again has shown its inclination to make law, not interpret law. Changing the definition of a word in a congressionally passed law is not the purview of the court; that is for the legislative branch.

Justice Alito, with Justice Thomas agreeing, wrote in his dissent: “There is only one word for what the Court has done today: legislation.” “A more brazen abuse of our authority to interpret statutes is hard to recall.” “The question is not whether discrimination because of sexual orientation or gender identity should be outlawed. The question is whether Congress did that in 1964.”

President of Wisconsin Family Action Julaine Appling commented, “Today’s decision by the high court causes significant problems. At a minimum, it undermines equal opportunities for women. Males identifying as female will take women’s places on athletics team and on the award podium, as recently happened at the Connecticut girls’ high‐school track finals where two boys identifying as girls have won 15 girls’ state-track-and-field titles over the past two years. It jeopardizes bodily privacy rights of women by forcing organizations to open women’s shelters, locker rooms, restrooms, and showers to men who say they are women.  In addition, it forces employers, such as Harris Funeral Homes, to choose between violating their religious beliefs or facing lawsuits and financial hardship.

“We will continue to analyze the decision to determine its impact on Wisconsin law and specifically on faith-based employers such as churches, schools, and para-church ministries. The breadth of the Court’s decision remains to be determined.”

By June 30, the court will be handing down more opinions that directly touch on religious liberty and rights of conscience.

Wisconsin Family Action was part of a friend-of-the-court amicus in the Harris case that was represented by Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF). Read ADF’s statement here.

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Copy available online HERE.

April 7 ballot, statewide referendum re: Marsy’s Law Amendment – what you need to know #MarsysLaw

On Tuesday, April 7, every ballot will have a referendum regarding the rights of victims of crime, commonly referred to as Marsy’s Law. Marsy’s Law would give victims the constitutional right to enforce their rights in the court of law if they have been infringed upon during the criminal justice process.

According to the web site for Marsy’s Law for All, the law is named for Marsalee (Marsy) Nicholas, a “beautiful, vibrant University of California Santa Barbara student, who was stalked and killed by her ex-boyfriend in 1983.”

Republicans in the state senate and assembly have authored and supported this proposal and it has passed now in two consecutive legislative sessions per the law with a good measure of bipartisan support.

The wording of the question as it will appear on your ballot is as follows:

Additional rights of crime victims.
Shall section 9m of article I of the constitution, which gives certain rights to crime victims, be amended to give crime victims additional rights, to require that the rights of crime victims be protected with equal force to the protections afforded the accused while leaving the federal constitutional rights of the accused intact, and to allow crime victims to enforce their rights in court?”

Essentially, according to those supporting this proposal, Marsy’s Law would strengthen some of the rights guaranteed the victims of crimes in state law by putting them into the state Constitution. It also adds a couple of rights to those currently recognized for victims of crime. Supporters say it is intended to level the playing field between the rights and protections that alleged criminals have and the rights and protections victims of crime have.

Those opposing the amendment say it will somehow affect the rights of the accused, that it’s unworkable and counterproductive, and claim it somehow violates the US Constitution.

Tuesday, April 7, is Election Day. Early in-person voting begins across the state on March 23. In Milwaukee, early voting begins Monday, March 16 and will run through Sunday, April 5. If you’d like to vote early, contact your municipal court for specific dates and times. Find your local municipal clerk’s information HERE.

 

Action Alert: WFA president asks citizens to weigh in on dangerous ban on talk therapy/counseling by 11 a.m. Tuesday 1/28

TODAY, Tuesday, January 28, at 11 a.m. the Wisconsin Marriage and Family Therapy, Professional Counseling and Social Work Examining Board will hold a public hearing at 4822 Madison Yards Way (Hill Farms State Office Building), Room N208, in Madison.

CLICK HERE to send email NOW

(SEE TALKING POINTS BELOW)

Also, send an email to Jon Derenee, Director at DSPSAdminRules@wisconsin.gov.  

The purpose of the hearing is to consider a permanent rule relating to unethical and unprofessional conduct.

Administrative Code Chapter Affected: Ch. MPSW 20 (Revised)

Part of the changes being proposed greatly concern us:

  • Adding gender and gender identity to the list of protected classes in the anti-discrimination language. (section (8) of the proposed rule change)
  • Determining that using or promoting “any intervention or method that has the purpose of attempting to change a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity, including attempting to change behaviors or expressions of self or to reduce sexual or romantic attractions or feelings toward individuals of the same gender” would constitute unethical or unprofessional conduct.

Essentially this rule would ban talk therapy or counseling that warns people that certain behaviors related to sexual behavior or gender identity can be dangerous or that offers a different approach or way of thinking (including exposing people to God’s design and plan) could result in the therapist, counselor or social worker being disciplined, up to and including losing their license.

CLICK HERE to send email NOW

(SEE TALKING POINTS BELOW)

Also, send an email to Jon Derenee, Director at DSPSAdminRules@wisconsin.gov.  

This proposal is uniquely different from the bill that is before the state legislature (AB 111/SB 107) that would prohibit certain mental health providers from engaging in so-called “conversion therapy” (i.e., talk therapy/counseling) with minors dealing with unwanted same-sex attraction or unwanted gender confusion and from similar ordinances that have passed in several communities in the last couple of years. First, this rule is not restricted to minors; it applies to anyone at any age. Second, nothing about a “fee for services” is mentioned, meaning whether or not money for services is exchanged, this rule would apply. Third, the rule provides no religious exemption/exception.

Citizens wanting to be part of the public record on this issue, must submit their written comments by email no later than 11 a.m. tomorrow morning, or they can make an appearance before the Board.

Eventually, the state legislature will have an opportunity to review this proposal; but that is down the road a bit.

CLICK HERE to send email NOW

(SEE TALKING POINTS BELOW)

Also, send an email to Jon Derenee, Director at DSPSAdminRules@wisconsin.gov.  

We believe this is an end-run around the normal legislative process, done to expedite these changes and keep people like the governor from having to actually sign-off on the language.

Wisconsin Family Action strongly opposes this proposed rule change, which if passed, will have the full weight and effect of a law in our state. Christians who have a license as a marriage and family therapist or a professional counselor or a social worker would be directly impacted by this rule, even to the point of losing their license and thereby potentially losing their livelihood.

CLICK HERE to send email NOW

Also, send an email to Jon Derenee, Director at DSPSAdminRules@wisconsin.gov.  

Below are some helpful “talking points” to assist you with your message:

  • Removing the word sex and replacing it with gender and gender identity in the discrimination rule changes the meaning of sex, which the federal government has affirmed refers to one’s biological makeup. Gender and sex are not the same. Gender is a politically correct idea that is not founded in science, whereas sex is a biological, scientific reality. The state has not equated these terms either. No agency should get to make this decision.
  • Marriage and family therapists, professional counselors and social workers have First Amendment rights of freedom of speech. Section 25 essentially forces all holding these licenses to give only one form of speech when it comes to treating someone dealing with unwanted same-sex attraction or unwanted gender confusion. Talk therapy is an intervention or method used by many therapists, counselors and social workers to help people make wise decisions. Their not being able to warn people about what can happen as a result of acting on their attractions and/or confusion is irresponsible at best.
  • We all agree that bullying, intimidation, shock therapy, or any kind of truly abusive behavior is wrong and is truly unethical and unprofessional conduct. But talking to people about realities, about biological truth, and educating them on risks is what good counselors, therapists and social workers should all have the right to do.

WFA E-Connection

MARK YOUR CALENDARS Call our office at 866-849-2536 to schedule a speaker from WFA or WFC for your next event!2020 VISION: CONTENDING FOR THE FAITH, CHALLENGING THE CULTURESAVE THE DATE!Our event dates for early 2020 are here!Thursday, January 16, Oconomowoc –...

Wed. 11/20: Public Hearing on bill allowing pharmacists to prescribe contraceptives

The Senate Committee on Health and Human Services will hold a public hearing on Senate Bill 286 this Wednesday, November 20, at 10:00 a.m. in Room 411 South of the State Capitol. Senate Bill (SB) 286, authored by Senator Kathy Bernier (R-Chippewa Falls), is the companion bill to Assembly Bill (AB) 304, legislation permitting pharmacists to prescribe and dispense hormonal contraceptive patches (the Patch) and self-administered oral hormonal contraceptives to persons 18 years of age and older. Currently, these contraceptives may only be prescribed by a physician.

  • Please ATTEND the public hearing and testify or register against SB 286.
  • If you are unable to attend the public hearing, please CALL or EMAIL your state senator TODAY and urge him/her to “Oppose AB 304 & SB 286.” 
  • Don’t know your state senator? Go to legis.wisconsin.gov and type in your home address under “Who Are My Legislators” or call the Legislative Hotline: 1-800-362-9472.

Wisconsin Family Council Engages in Founders’ Bible Project

Wisconsin Family Council Engages in Founders’ Bible Project

Pastors, ministry leaders gather in Madison to remind citizens
of the historical impact of God’s Word on our state and nation

Madison, WI – Pastors and ministry leaders from across Wisconsin came to Madison today as a part of Wisconsin Family Council’s “Pastors’ Day at the Capitol.” The major focus of the time was the presentation of a copy of the Founders’ Bible to the people of each legislative district. Following is a statement about this project from Julaine Appling, president of Wisconsin Family Council:

“At a time when public officials are attacked for their faith and America’s religious heritage is rabidly excised from its schools and institutions, citizens from across Wisconsin have gathered here at the Capitol to present to the people of each legislative district a beautiful Founders Bible documenting the profound influence of Scripture throughout our nation’s history.

That heritage is everywhere. In a few short weeks it will again be Good Friday – the 154th since the assassination of the youthful skeptic who became the most religious of all Presidents and who strove like no other to know and do the will of God.

It was that President who explained America’s providential quest in 272 immortal words – words whose profound meaning is incomprehensible to modern secular ears but which, as Professor Rufus Fears once observed, were readily understood by a then Christian people.

For two years, Union armies had marched to the Battle Hymn of the Republic:

In the beauty of the lilies, Christ was born across the sea,
With a glory in His bosom that transfigures you and me;
As He died to make men holy, let us die to make men free!
While God is marching on.

Then, in November 1863, just as man is born in God’s image but marred by sin, Abraham Lincoln explained at Gettysburg that though America was conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that men are created equal, its birth was marred by human bondage. And as the Son of God died that man might live free from sin through a new birth of righteousness, so the thousands who died at Gettysburg gave their last full measures of devotion that America might live through a new birth of freedom, rid of slavery’s curse.

Finally, after two more years of horror, on Palm Sunday 1865, General Lee surrendered at Appomattox, and Lincoln steamed up the Potomac to Washington in triumph.

Five days later, on Good Friday, he was murdered.

The American people who understood the meaning of the President’s address at Gettysburg likewise understood the meaning of his death. As Michael Medved wrote in The American Miracle, the martyrdom of the nation’s savior commenced reconciliation as nothing else could. And for one and a half centuries since, it has inspired us to dedicate ourselves to the unfinished work he and heroes throughout our history have so nobly advanced.

Of course we know the world will neither note nor remember what we say here. But we give these Bibles in hope that the people of Wisconsin and America may never forget what God has done here in this great land, and that for generations to come, each may know both a new birth in Christ and the blessings of repentance and righteousness on our nation.”

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Wisconsin Family Council is a statewide, not-for-profit organization engaged in strengthening, preserving and promoting marriage, family, life and religious liberty in Wisconsin.

ADDRESS OF PRESIDENT ABRAHAM LINCOLN

November 19, 1863

Gettysburg, Pennsylvania

Fourscore and seven years ago our fathers brought forth, on this continent, a new nation, conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived, and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting-place for those who here gave their lives, that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this. But, in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate, we cannot consecrate—we cannot hallow—this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they here gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom, and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

Copy available online here.

Voter Guides Across America

In addition to your state election resources, you can also find information on many federal candidates (U.S. House and Senate) at the Family Policy Alliance Voter Guide. And if you find helpful information at any of these sites, be sure to pass it along!

Voting Resources by State:

Alabama: Alabama Policy Institute Candidate Questionnaire

Alaska: Family Policy Alliance Voter Guide (for U.S. House & Senate)

Arizona: Center for Arizona Policy Voter Guide

Arkansas: Family Council Voter Guide

California: Family Policy Alliance Voter Guide (for U.S. House & Senate)

Colorado: CFA Foundation Voter Guide

Connecticut: Family Policy Alliance Voter Guide (for U.S. House & Senate)

Delaware: Delaware Family Policy Council Action Voter Guide

Florida: Florida Family Action Voter Guides

Georgia: Family Policy Alliance of Georgia Voter Guide

Hawaii: Hawaii Family Forum Candidate Questionnaire

Idaho: Family Policy Alliance of Idaho Scorecard & Election Resources

Illinois: Family Policy Alliance Voter Guide (for U.S. House & Senate)

Indiana: Indiana Family Action Voter Guide

Iowa: The Family Leader Election Resources

Kansas: Family Policy Alliance of Kansas Voter Guide

Kentucky: The Family Foundation Candidate Survey

Louisiana: Louisiana Family Forum Voter Guide

Maine: Christian Civic League of Maine Voter Guides

Maryland: Family Policy Alliance Voter Guide (for U.S. House & Senate)

Massachusetts: Family Policy Alliance Voter Guide (for U.S. House & Senate)

Michigan: Michigan Family Forum Voter Guides

Minnesota: Minnesota Family Council Voter Guide & Resources

Mississippi: Family Policy Alliance Voter Guide (for U.S. House & Senate)

Missouri: Missouri Voter Guide

Montana: Montana Family Foundation Voter Guide

Nebraska: Nebraska Family Alliance Voter Guide

Nevada: Family Policy Alliance Voter Guide (for U.S. House & Senate)

New Hampshire: Cornerstone Legislative Scorecards

New Jersey: Family Policy Alliance Voter Guide (for U.S. House & Senate)

New Mexico: Family Policy Alliance of New Mexico Voter Guide

New York: New York Families Voter Guide

North Carolina: North Carolina Family Policy Council Voter Guide

North Dakota: Family Policy Alliance of North Dakota Scorecard & Election Resources

Ohio: Citizens for Community Values Voter Guide

Oklahoma: Family Policy Alliance Voter Guide (for U.S. House & Senate)

Oregon: Family Policy Alliance Voter Guide (for U.S. House & Senate)

Pennsylvania: Pennsylvania Family Council Voter Guide

Rhode Island: Family Policy Alliance Voter Guide (for U.S. House & Senate)

South Carolina: Family Policy Alliance Voter Guide (for U.S. House & Senate)

South Dakota: Family Heritage Alliance Action Election Resources

Tennessee: Family Action of Tennessee Voter Guide & Resources

Texas: Texas Values Action Voter Guide

Utah: Family Policy Alliance Voter Guide (for U.S. House & Senate)

Vermont: Family Policy Alliance Voter Guide (for U.S. House & Senate)

Virginia: Family Policy Alliance Voter Guide (for U.S. House & Senate)

Washington: Washington Voter Guide

West Virginia: Family Policy Council of West Virginia Voter Guide

Wisconsin: Wisconsin Family Action Voter Guide and Election Resources

Wyoming: Family Policy Alliance Voter Guide (for U.S. House & Senate

Pro-Family Group Applauds Governor Walker’s Child Tax Credit

Giving back to Wisconsin’s families is a good idea

MADISON— “Helping Wisconsin’s families by giving some of their hard-earned money back to them in the form of this credit is a great idea. It’s responsible leadership. The legislature needs to get behind this and get it done yet this session,” said Wisconsin Family Action president Julaine Appling.

In yesterday’s State-of-the-State speech, Governor Scott Walker announced that he plans to give parents a $100 per child, per year tax credit, an initiative that this year would cost $122 million. This year the credit would be available to parents via a rebate and in subsequent years would be part of their annual income tax filing. Funds to pay for this years credit would be from the revenue surplus, which recently was projected to be more than the Department of Revenue had originally forecasted.

Governor Walker says he wants this year’s credit to reach parents before the beginning of school this fall. For this year, parents with children who were under 18 as of December 31, 2017, qualify for the credit. There is no income restriction.

Appling, noted, “Families with children are the backbone of our state. When dads and moms can get real cash in their pocket to help offset expenses related to child-rearing, that is directly helping to strengthen our best natural resource. Whether parents use this credit for school supplies or clothing or to help pay for music lessons or playing a sport or whatever the need or want may be, this is a good use of surplus revenue. Families can do much more with $100 per child than the state can. No contest there, for sure,” Appling noted.

“We would note, however, that even better than a tax credit would be for the state to do better budgeting. What we ultimately need is to let families keep more of their money in the first place. Let’s get Wisconsin out of being a high-taxed state. I’m pretty sure that would give families a lot more than $100 per child.

“Governor Walker is working hard to help Wisconsin families, and we applaud this pro-family proposal. Further, we urge the state legislature to make it a priority in the closing weeks of the session. If there’s anything elected officials should be able to agree on, it’s helping families help their children.” concluded Appling.

The current legislative session will be over no later than mid-March and could be done sooner.

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Wisconsin Family Action is a statewide, not-for-profit organization actively strengthening,
preserving and promoting marriage, family, life and religious liberty in Wisconsin.

Copy available online here.

Citizen Activist Groups Launch Statewide Campaign To Stop Largest Expansion of Gambling in Wisconsin’s History

Last week, Rep. Tyler Vorpagel (R-Plymouth) circulated a co-sponsorship memo for LRB 2122, a bill proposing to “legalize” and “regulate” Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) games.  The bill would legalize online gambling and represents the largest expansion of gambling in Wisconsin’s history.

In response, Wisconsin Family Action and Citizens Against Expanded Gambling have launched a statewide campaign to oppose this massive expansion of gambling.  Combined, these two groups represent over 22,000 Wisconsin citizens who oppose any expansion of gambling. These citizens are being encouraged to contact their legislators and hold them accountable.

Additionally, a digital awareness campaign, statewide robo calls to citizens who oppose online gambling, a statewide tele-townhall briefing and legislative office visits are underway.  “We’ve  jointly  held statewide information forums on this issue to educate citizens about the dangers of expanded gambling with an emphasis on legalizing DFS.  To date, we’ve held 14 events with over 550 attending. We have 8 more scheduled for this fall.  When the people find out the truth about this issue, they are appalled and  committed to doing what they can to stop it,” says Lorri Pickens, Executive Director of Citizens Against Expanded Gambling.

The proposed “Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) bill” allows the state to force internet gambling into nearly every home, every dorm room and onto every smart phone in the state, a far greater expansion of commercialized gambling than constituents, legislators and state media have been led to believe.

“The point of this DFS bill is to give the appearance of regulation and create the impression this is being done on behalf of consumers. However, no consumer protection groups are advocating for DFS. Only the industry itself is advocating for ‘legalizing’ and ‘regulating’—a situation which should give any lawmaker pause,” said Julaine Appling, president of Wisconsin Family Action. “What industry has ever sought to regulate itself?”

Gambling expansion in Wisconsin is currently occurring in multiple ways:

  1. The Ho-Chunk Nation Legislature approved $143 million in expansion for four of the tribe’s six gaming facilities.
  2. The proposed 2017-2018 Wisconsin State Budget calls for a $1 million increase in lottery advertising to increase the number of tickets sold annually.
  3. Proposed off-reservation casinos in Beloit and Shullsburg are pending approval from the Federal Bureau of Indian Affairs.

As is well documented, gambling is addictive; and opening up online gambling, such as DFS, will result in more problem gamblers, more gambler indebtedness, and more broken families. Online gambling does not put money back into the economy; but rather makes it more difficult for problem gamblers in particular to be productive, contributing citizens, helping to enrich the local and state economy.

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