The votes are in – here’s how the midterm election played out in Wisconsin

The votes are in – here’s how the midterm election played out in Wisconsin

The votes for the 2022 fall midterm partisan elections are in, and overall, the outcome is as expected—not necessarily as hoped for. 

The big races—US senate, governor and attorney general were all close. Unofficially, Republican incumbent Ron Johnson has prevailed over Democrat challenger Mandela Barnes who is currently serving as our state’s lieutenant governor. The margin in this race was razor thin. 

In the race for governor, Republican challenger Tim Michels lost to incumbent Democrat Tony Evers, while in the attorney general race, incumbent Democrat Josh Kaul prevailed over challenger Republican Eric Toney. The AG race was even closer than the governor’s race.

In our congressional races, all incumbents won and in the only open congressional race in our state, Congressional District 3, Republican Derek Van Orden appears to have beat the Democrat opponent. This was an open seat because long-time Member of Congress Democrat Ron Kind decided to retire and not run for re-election. So now, Wisconsin’s congressional delegation, or members of the US House of Representatives, is made up of six Republicans and two Democrats.

Turning to the state legislature, Republicans held strong majorities in both the senate and the Assembly going into this election—not veto-proof, but close. As a reminder, all 99 Assembly seats were on the ballot and half of the senate districts, the odd-numbered districts. 

In the Senate, one noteworthy race resulted in a seat flipping from Democrat to Republican. In Senate District 25 in the northern part of the state Republican Romaine Quinn prevailed in an open race. The seat had been held by Democrat Janet Bewley who decided not to run again this cycle. In Senate District 31, Republican David Estenson narrowly lost to Democrat incumbent Jeff Smith. In other open Senate races, Republican Rob Hutton won in Senate District 5 and Republican Rachael Cabral-Guevera won in District 19—both of those seats had been held by Republicans. So, at this point, even with just the one Republican pick up in the state Senate, it appears there will be a veto-proof majority in the state senate with 22 Republicans and 11 Democrats.

In the Assembly, incumbents held on, with one or two seats flipped from Democrat to Republican (one race is still too close to call). The Republicans basically maintained their strong majority, but it does not appear they will get to the 66 needed for a veto-proof majority. 

With Evers returning to the governor’s office, Republicans would have liked veto-proof majorities in both houses so that they could override the governor’s vetoes. You might recall that this past session, Governor Evers vetoed 126 bills that were put on his desk by the Republican-controlled state legislature. Those bills included pro-life bills, election-reform bills, school choice bills, and many more. We now enter a second 4-year period, which is two legislative sessions, with a divided government which will mean more of the same since the legislature won’t be able to override Evers’ vetoes. 

At the federal level, races in Arizona, Pennsylvania, Georgia, and a few other states, including Wisconsin, loomed very large going into election day. Pollsters and pundits were saying in the days leading up to the election that it looked very favorable for Republicans to gain control of the Senate. Both Democrats and Republicans needed to win 5 seats in order to maintain or gain the majority. Across the country there were tight, close races, but right now without all the races yet being called, it appears that the US Senate will once again be 50 Democrats and 50 Republicans—with a new face or two in that body, but essentially the same scenario we have had. Johnson’s win here in Wisconsin was critical to maintaining the 50-50 split.

This outcome in the US Senate is going to mean some more tense moments as the Senate looks at the so-called Respect for Marriage Act, the potential codification of abortion, bills that deal with special protections for the LGBTQ agenda, and so forth. On the bills that require the 60-vote threshold, Democrats and liberal outside groups will be very heavily lobbying the Republican senators to peel 10 of them off so they can get the votes they need on these bills and more. From our perspective, this means citizens need to stay very engaged and willing to let their senators know their opinion on these highly-charged, very important issues.

We should take a quick look at the US House of Representatives as well. That body had a Democrat majority for the past two years, but that appears to have changed as a result of yesterday’s election. Republicans now have a narrow majority over the Democrats with the New York Times estimating that the Republicans will have 224 of the 435 seats and the Democrats holding 211. Talk about narrow margins! Wisconsin contributed to this majority by flipping Congressional District 3 from blue to red. 

Of course, this does mean leadership will change from Speaker Nancy Pelosi to likely Kevin McCarthy. Now, with the Republicans in control of the House and the Democrats in control of the Senate, there’s going to be, at least presumably, some gridlock with the House probably passing more conservative bills than the senate will be willing to take up. 

We must remember that in all things, God is sovereign. Scripture says the powers that be are ordained of God, which means we as believers must view even election results through that lens. That doesn’t mean we don’t assess how outcomes happened, what strategies and tactics worked and which ones didn’t. It doesn’t mean we don’t look for ways to do things better if need be to produce different results if that’s what we think is right. But it does mean at some point, we accept the outcome of elections, as at a minimum, God-permitted. We should look for lessons to be learned from whatever the outcome is. 

As always, many thanks for all of your work in this election cycle and for your continued support.

Thank you for whatever you did to help determine the consequences of this election. Whether you voted, used your influence to encourage others to join you, worked the polls, were an election observer, took people to the polls who couldn’t otherwise get there, or prayed—it’s all important. And you deserve great gratitude for what you’ve done.

There will be very real consequences from this election, and we need to be ready for those, both the positive and the negative ones. We do our best to honor God with our vote and we engage elected officials now as they begin making policy. We let them know our opinion on bills, but we ultimately accept the outcome as from God, Who could have changed the outcome of any race if He had chosen to do so. We rejoice in victories, and we accept losses, and most importantly, we push forward with hope in King Jesus and in God’s Word and with courage and determination in our mission of advancing Christian values in Wisconsin—because we love God, and we love our neighbor.

Stay tuned for more information on all that our organizations did in this election. We think you will be very encouraged!

Let’s honor God with our vote on Nov. 8

Let’s honor God with our vote on Nov. 8

With the midterm election just a few days away, we are in the midst of intense spiritual warfare. Politics is always a spiritual business, as it involves truth and ethics. But with so much at stake during this election, the forces of darkness threatening to steal our children’s innocence, destroy the family unit, annihilate another generator of Wisconsin’s unborn future, and remove our God-given rights are working overtime. 

“It was Lucifer’s attempt to displace Christ from the Throne of Heaven that got him expelled (Isaiah 14:12). Lucifer is still seeking thrones for himself, and weak, spiritually naïve human beings seeking power easily become instruments of his quest,” writes Wallace B. Henley of the Christian Post

As Christians, we can fight back against the Devil’s attempt to seek political thrones for himself by honoring God with our vote. This means that the candidates we vote for should stand for biblical principles. ​​They should be unwavering in their protection of parental rights, the sanctity of life, children’s innocence, and religious liberty. 

There may not always be a candidate whose views align perfectly with God’s teaching, but there will likely be an option that is clearly the most ethical. Part of honoring God with our vote is preventing the evil ideas of the left from coming into fruition by voting for the most ethical candidate, even if we don’t agree with him/her on everything. 

Further, if we are going to make significant headway against the evil in our country, we need churches and pastors to directly address the political issues that the Bible takes a clear stance on—in particular, abortion, marriage, and human sexuality.

Pro-abortion advocates and government leaders are working tirelessly to ensure a future of abortion on-demand through all nine months of pregnancy. Unfortunately, many Christians fail to recognize abortion as the grave offense against God that it is, and abortion extremists are taking advantage of that. 

Vice President Kamala Harris and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi outrageously claim that abortion and the Christian faith are compatible, while California Governor Gavin Newsom is using Bible verses to advertise for abortion across the country. 

The church needs to step up and set the record straight on abortion, marriage, human sexuality, and children’s rights including the right to life. Pastors dare not any longer ignore these biblical issues that have been politicized, as the left shows no signs of stopping in their mission to dismantle the traditional family, immerse young children in inappropriate material, abort the unborn, and elevate adult desires above children’s rights.  

This is not to say that churches should become political power houses. Our interest is rather in making sure God’s people are informed so they can then appropriately engage with the government God has given us in this great country—a Republic, which requires the participation of its citizens. Our dual citizenship—in Heaven and on Earth—requires that we be good citizens of both places. Good citizens vote knowledgeably and responsibly—and honor God in doing so.

Most importantly, as good citizens of both heaven and earth, we must pray for this election. Pray that the most Christ-centered leaders are elected and that they lead our country toward virtue and Truth. 

“For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.” Ephesians 6:12

 

Wisconsin Christian Heritage Week- let’s teach our children about our history

Wisconsin Christian Heritage Week- let’s teach our children about our history

In 2018, then-Governor Scott Walker issued a proclamation declaring September 9-15 Christian Heritage Week in Wisconsin. He opened his statement with the following: “WHEREAS; the Preamble to the Constitution of Wisconsin states that ‘We, the people of Wisconsin, grateful to Almighty God for our freedom… domestic tranquility…do establish this Constitution.’” Walker then cited statements by Founders Franklin, Washington, Jefferson, and Madison in which each extols God or Christianity.

While we are not technically a Christian nation, we definitely have a distinctive and pervasive Christian heritage. Even though Christian Heritage Week was technically last week, it’s always time and good for families in particular to explore the truth of this heritage. Passing on this Christian heritage is each American Christian’s responsibility and honor. 

Activists in today’s very secular culture would like to revise that part of our history because doing so would make it much easier to advance their liberal, progressive and destructive agenda. Christianity is a real impediment to what they want America to become—a totally humanistic, socialistic, godless mere shell of its original self; and forgetting our history is one of the best ways to ensure we have little to no Christianity in our future.

The antidote to combatting the left’s mission to transform America into a godless dystopia is for families to begin instructing their children about our rich and deeply faith-based heritage.

For instance, did you know every single state constitution makes reference to God or Providence or the Supreme Judge? While it’s true that the US Constitution doesn’t include such a reference, the language after the Articles giving the particulars of when and where the signing was done, right above the signatures, the Founders wrote, “In the year of our Lord.” We also certainly see such references in the Declaration of Independence. Even a cursory survey of the writings of many of our founders and those following our founders’ era are replete with distinctly Christian references.  

Consider how many national days of prayer and fasting presidents have called. Reading those proclamations makes it very clear that the nation has a Christian heritage. Certainly, rehearsing the story of William Bradford and the 1620 voyage of The Mayflower and The Mayflower Compact beautifully relates our strong Christian foundation—one that is unique to America. 

No other country was founded in the way and for the reason we were. This is what has made America so exceptional. This Christian foundation was the basis for our unique rights and liberties that uphold human dignity in a way that no other country has before, and our children need to know this. 

Unless we do this family by family, our Christian heritage will quickly be forgotten. Let’s do our part in saving America by honoring our Christian roots at home. 

Parents can find some excellent information that will help them teach their children about our Christian heritage here

California bill endangers parental rights – even in Wisconsin

California bill endangers parental rights – even in Wisconsin

California Democrats have just passed a radical bill that poses serious threats to parental rights and children’s safety around the country.

S.B. 107 allows California courts to remove custody from parents who are opposed to their young children undergoing irreversible medical procedures, according to the National Review

Any child can “flee” to California for this purpose, or any person “acting as a parent” can take a child to California to obtain this abusive “treatment.”

S.B. 107 just passed both chambers of the state legislature and is now in the hands of the Gov. Gavin Newsom. 

If Gov. Newsom signs S.B. 107, California courts will be given “temporary emergency jurisdiction” over any child in California, regardless of which state they reside in, allowing them to receive harmful interventions without parental consent. This attempt at severe government overreach violates federal law regarding jurisdiction over custody matters and the laws of the 49 other states which need to be respected according to the “full faith and credit” clause of the U.S. Constitution. 

This bill is extreme—even for California. And it has implications for every state. SB 107 would allow Wisconsin children to be essentially “kidnapped” by the state of California so that these minors can undergo bodily mutilation and sterilization before they’re old enough to understand the consequences of these actions. Further, any parent who opposes the lies being fed to their child will be met by forceful opposition made up by courts, police, and child-protective services.

Not only are legislators ignoring the basic rights of parents, but they are disregarding the clear evidence demonstrating the damage caused by gender “affirming” medical and surgical interventions on children. 

The American College of Pediatricians’ found that 80 to 95 percent of children who suffer from gender dysphoria will eventually re-identify with their biological sex, if they are not pushed into trying to do the impossible—change their sex.. Further, according to a recent study by the Heritage Foundation, increased access to gender “affirming” care doesn’t improve mental health outcomes. It only increases a child’s risk for suicide. 

Ultimately, gender “transition” surgeries mutilate healthy bodies, affirm dangerous lies, and lead to psychological derangement. It is undeniably abusive to allow vulnerable children to permanently damage their bodies. 

We need to keep California from getting its hands on our children and blatantly undermining parents. Bringing national attention to this bill and highlighting its danger will give us a chance to persuade Gov. Newsom to veto the bill. Let’s urge our state officials to do just that and call California out for its extremism and child abuse. This is a great question to ask candidates for governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general, and even those running for state senate or state assembly seats: 

“Will you actively work to protect Wisconsin’s parents and children from the long-arm of liberal elected officials in California—or any other state seeking to lure minor children, take them into “protective custody” for purposes of prescribing harmful drugs and/or performing dangerous surgeries in an effort to do the impossible, change their sex?”

No parent should ever face the unimaginable anger caused by the mutilation and abuse of their children, like many already have. Parents alone have the right to make medical decisions for their children, and it is far beyond the boundaries of California courts to take those deeply personal decisions into their own hands. Children belong to their parents, not the government. 

Please pray that this bill is defeated along with the evil ideas behind it.

Primary Election Analysis

Primary Election Analysis

Election #3 of 4 for 2022 is now in the books for Wisconsin. After Tuesday’s fall partisan primary, the November 8 partisan general election ballots are set. Now we have 90 days of hard-hitting, probably almost non-stop political TV, radio, digital, text, phone calls, and mail ads, all designed to convince us to vote for a particular candidate.

But today, not yet 24 hours since the close of the polls yesterday, it’s time for a bit of reflection on the primary results. If our numbers are anywhere near accurate (and we think they’re close), turnout yesterday was about 26% of registered voters, which is higher than many other similar primaries. Big races brought people out.

Democrats didn’t have any meaningful statewide primary once 3 candidates for US Senate dropped out within the last couple of weeks, each throwing their support to Mandela Barnes. As a result, Republican voters far outnumbered Democrats. So, does any of this matter?

Yes, it does matter. Essentially the lower voter turnout (compared to fall elections which usually have turnouts at 60% or more) means that a very small number of eligible voters chose who will be on the November ballot and potentially who will be our next US Senator, members of congress, governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general, secretary of state, and state treasurer, as well as who will serve in our state Senate and Assembly. What that voter turnout means is that each vote was very powerful. If you voted, which we certainly hope you did, it means you made a difference—and we thank you for that.

As for the number of Democrats vs. Republican ballots cast, that doesn’t mean much at all as it relates to outcomes. But it well might matter in the long-run. In any given election, Wisconsin is purple. We can go “red” or “blue” at any moment. One intangible that definitely impacts an election in a state like ours is voter enthusiasm, which creates momentum. Without some research and comparison, we don’t know how yesterday’s Republican numbers compare with previous August primaries. If they are larger, then it could mean enthusiasm and momentum are right now with the GOP.  We won’t really know that until the November election. All that said, here’s our first-blush analysis of the primary election results.

Analysis

Tim Michaels won the GOP gubernatorial primary. Does that mean his money is buying the office—or could be buying the office? Or did the voters really think he’s better suited to go up against incumbent Democrat Tony Evers?  Or did his messaging resonate with voters better than Rebecca Kleefisch’s? Or was Rebecca seen as establishment and Michels as truly the outsider who had built a successful business—kind of like Donald Trump? If anyone tells you authoritatively that they know the answer, we’d be really skeptical. So many things go into how a voter decides to vote; it’s difficult to get a clear picture in any election of the motivation of voters. Some research will be done, we’re sure, on this race; and we will eventually learn more, but even that won’t be 100% definitive.

The bottom line is Michels has by most everyone’s opinion an uphill battle to beat Tony Evers. Beating an incumbent is never easy, and this election will be no exception. Michels will have to be extremely disciplined in his messaging and in his general campaigning. We hope he’s got great people around him giving him great and appropriate advice. Time will tell.

No real surprise that Roger Roth won the GOP lieutenant governor race. Roger is well-known and liked by many. He sold us out a couple of sessions ago on an important pro-life bill; so we are very guarded when it comes to Roger.

The Attorney General race is one of our very favorite wins, with Eric Toney coming out on top. Our WFA PAC endorsed Eric Toney because he has the right positions on our core issues, has the right experience, and we believe had good people around him. Toney was significantly outspent by Adam Jarchow, but Toney’s experience and straight-forward messaging resonated with voters. Jarchow lying about Toney didn’t help Jarchow’s cause. Karen Mueller did better than we thought she would, way out-performing Tim Ramthun’s gubernatorial performance, with 3.5 times more votes (152,392 v. 41,695). Mueller was heavily aligned with Ramthun. We look forward to Eric Toney beating Josh Kaul this November and bringing back not just common sense, but a true regard for the law, to the AG’s office.

A key assembly GOP race was in Assembly District 63, where long-time and powerful incumbent Robin Vos was challenged by newcomer Adam Steen. Vos is the current (and longest serving) Assembly Speaker. Wisconsin Family Action PAC endorsed Steen, and Wisconsin Family Action, Inc., ran a sophisticated and full-on targeted campaign in support of Trump-endorsed Steen. We targeted nearly 28,000 voters and contacted them about 25 times each by a variety of means and with a variety of messages. At the end of the night, Steen lost, but only by 260 votes out of nearly 10,000 total votes cast. As the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel notes, Vos “narrowly defeats” and “barely overcome[s]” in the race, which was a “stunning margin.” We agree. We are glad we engaged and don’t regret in the least the investment we made. We’ll analyze the results and see how our targeted universe performed.

Other State Senate and Assembly races happened, but nothing really shocking. What would be great is if the GOP could in November gain veto-proof majorities in the Assembly and the Senate. In the Senate the majority party would need to hold all of its current seats and pick up one seat. Before a number of recent resignations, the Assembly had 61 Republicans, just five short of a veto-proof majority. So statistically, this goal is achievable—which, if accomplished, would mean the ability to override Evers’ vetoes, should he win a second term in November.

In the Secretary of State and State Treasurer races (both non-policy-making offices), the results were not surprising with long-time Republican Assembly Representative Amy Loudenbeck winning the Secretary of State race. Jay Schroeder, who has run for nearly every office imaginable, lost once again but had a decent showing, largely because an election integrity group out of Virginia engaged in the race and sent numerous mailers out on behalf of Schroeder. Neither John Leiber nor Orlando Owens were particularly well-known, but Leiber solidly bested Owens.

Congressional primaries were similarly not shocking with GOP incumbents handily beating their GOP challengers. Ron Johnson, of course, resoundingly won his GOP US Senate primary, and is set to face Mandela Barnes, the current Lieutenant Governor, a race that has the attention of the entire nation because the balance of the US Senate is at stake.

Full election results are available here.

 

Milwaukee Board of Supervisors uses referendum on legalizing marijuana as political ploy

Milwaukee Board of Supervisors uses referendum on legalizing marijuana as political ploy

The Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors is looking to put another referendum on legalizing recreational marijuana on the ballot this fall, a strategy they have used in the past to help drive turnout and that many believe proved effective in helping get Tony Evers elected as governor.

The referendum asks Milwaukee County residents if they “favor allowing adults 21 years of age and older to engage in the personal use of marijuana, while also regulating commercial marijuana-related activities, and imposing a tax on the sale of marijuana?”

The ballot question, however, means nothing without backing from the state, and leadership in the Republican-led state legislature has shown little interest in legalizing and regulating non-medical use of cannabis.

These nonbinding referenda are nothing other than a political ploy. The left-leaning Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors knows that such resolutions motivate pot-happy voters to get to the polls. They confuse voters because they sound official, but are essentially meaningless.

According to a poll conducted before the 2018 election, 56% of Wisconsin voters stated they were more likely to vote knowing a cannabis measure was on the ballot.

Another poll by Marquette University Law School released earlier this year found 61% of registered voters in Wisconsin support marijuana legalization. Among Democratic voters, 75% supported marijuana legalization, meaning Democratic voters are the most likely to show up to the polls because of this referendum.

The left has been quick to put these types of referenda on a ballot and then hype them up in social and other media, making people think when they vote on them, it will actually make a difference. It is essentially a scam; the left is simply using people to advance their agenda.

Experts believe advisory questions on the ballot have increased voter turnout enough to affect the outcome of races, politics watchers say, and we can expect more counties to add cannabis questions to their ballots.

“That’s the carrot for the horse,” said Milwaukee County Supervisor Patti Logsdon. “That’s how Evers got voted in the last time.”

This means it’s vital that every Christian shows up to the polls and votes for Christ-centered leaders. We cannot allow the left to get away with this political stunt and elect lawless, unprincipled leaders like they have in the past.

Our own Milwaukee County District Attorney John T. Chisholm has refused to enforce pro-life laws, and we need representatives who will hold him accountable and prioritize the rule of law over their own preferences.

Elections have consequences, and every vote counts. Let’s counter the left’s dishonest attempt to drive up votes for radical candidates by showing up to the polls with our friends, families, and Christian communities.

 

 

 

Life after Roe in Wisconsin

Life after Roe in Wisconsin

The anticipation is over. Nationally and in Wisconsin, we are turning a page on the abortion issue. All you have to do is read the last few lines on the first page of the two-hundred-plus page opinion to know the essence of what the US Supreme Court decided: “Held: The Constitution does not confer a right to abortion; Roe and Casey are overruled; and the authority to regulate abortion is returned to the people and their elected representatives.”

Those are powerful, long-awaited words—and we praise God for His goodness and grace to us in giving us this decision.

To clarify, overruling Roe and the 1992 Casey decision that affirmed a woman’s so-called “right to an abortion” means that each state now must deal with the issue as was the case before the Supreme Court concocted a “right” to abortion in 1973.

Wisconsin is one of a dozen states that has a pre‑Roe law on the books. Ours dates back to 1849, one year after we became a state. This law criminalizes most abortions in our state, with one exception—the “life of the mother,” which isn’t clearly defined in the law. For many years, pro-life citizens and organizations have worked hard to keep this law on the books for this exact time.

Nothing prevents this law from right now being enforceable. Apparently, Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin also believes that because within hours of the decision being released last Friday, the state’s largest abortion provider quit doing abortions at its three abortion-providing facilities.

But nothing about this issue is simple, largely because of entrenched worldviews and political aspirations. Months ago, Democrat Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul announced he would not enforce the law if Roe were overturned. In recent days, he’s reiterated that position.

Additionally, a number of county district attorneys have said they won’t bring changes against someone who violates the law. And over the weekend, Governor Tony Evers announced that he will give clemency to any doctor charged with breaking the 173-year-old law, which means, in essence, he’s pardoning criminals in advance of their being sentenced.

In addition to all this, Governor Evers (D) asked, and Attorney General Josh Kaul (D) was happy to comply, that a lawsuit be filed challenging the enforceability of the law. Obviously, enforcement of this abortion ban isn’t a slam-dunk.

Further, the left is going to use the overturning of Roe to energize their base for this fall’s election. They want to keep Evers as governor and Kaul as AG and flip both the Assembly and Senate from Republican majorities to Democrat. If that happens, the 1849 abortion ban will be gone by late January.

For years, Democrats in the state legislature have been introducing bills to get rid of every abortion regulation we have—24-hour waiting period, woman’s right to know, 20-week abortion ban, ultrasound requirement, telemedicine ban and more. The surest way to have abortion on demand in our state is a sweeping liberal victory in November. The money was already coming in to accomplish that prior to the Dobbs decision. As wonderful as that decision is, it added fuel to the liberals’ zeal.

The foregoing doesn’t have to happen. We can remain a state where human life is protected. It will take commitment and work.

We need to foster a culture of life by practicing radical love and compassion toward expecting mothers who are in difficult situations. Churches and their members need to offer help and hope to abortion-vulnerable women and men by donating to crisis pregnancy centers, giving directly to mothers in need, or simply walking with those who are hurting.

We must also speak the truth in love about the unborn. Debates surrounding this issue will become more intense, and pro-lifers need to be equipped with the facts and prepared to defend the sanctity of life at all times.

Lastly, the surest way to keep the pro-life momentum going in Wisconsin is by electing the right leaders this fall. We have an opportunity to ensure that Christ-centered representatives lead our state in the right direction and protect life by voting in this year’s upcoming election and encouraging like-minded people to join us.

We’ve been given a gift; now we must protect it.

 

Even after public schools reopened, homeschooling numbers are up

Even after public schools reopened, homeschooling numbers are up

The coronavirus crisis has catalyzed a drastic surge in homeschooling as parents’ concerns grow about public education. 

While homeschooling numbers are slightly lower than last year’s record high, they are still significantly higher than pre-COVID-19 levels. During the 2020-2021 school year, the number of homeschooling students in the U.S. increased by 63%. Even though schools have re-opened, the majority of families that opted for homeschooling over remote learning have continued with it. 

The Wisconsin Policy Forum reported historic drops in enrollment for public and private schools in Wisconsin. Nearly 31,900 students were homeschooled during the 2020-21 school year, which is a 47% increase from the previous year. 

Private school enrollment took less of a hit than public school enrollment, but still saw the greatest decrease since 2013. 

Virtual charter schools also attracted new Wisconsin families, as enrollment increased by 84% from last year. 

In Milwaukee, public school enrollment decreased by 4.2% and 151 students switched to homeschooling. 

Parents have attributed their decision to homeschool to philosophical differences with their schools, Covid restrictions, and concerns about the quality of education. Generally, children arebetter off learning vital skills and values from their parents than being propagandized from activist teachers. 

With so much corruption happening in public schools, homeschooling acts as a beacon of hope. Children benefit greatly, especially mentally and spiritually, when they are primarily guided by their parents rather than the anti-Christian culture that is overrunning schools. 

Thankfully, Wisconsin is leading the country in school choice, and it offers homeschooling parents plenty of freedom to direct their children’s education. The homeschool law was passed in 1983 and hasn’t been changed since then, making it one of the best homeschool laws in the country.

The Academy of Excellence Online (AoE) provides an excellent homeschooling opportunity for families in Wisconsin – it is a virtual program available for Wisconsin parents interested in homeschooling and also is part of the Wisconsin Parental Choice Program (“the voucher program”).. The deadline for applying is April 21st! AoE also has brick-and-mortar Christian schools in Milwaukee that also participate in the Milwaukee Parental Choice Program.

Homeschooling is an excellent option for parents who want to protect their children from radical indoctrination. It provides parents the opportunity to train their children for the ideological battle being waged against them. Children need to learn how to recognize and combat the lies they are being fed, meaning all parents must engage in some form of education at home. The very best defense for children is parents being on offense!

This transition away from public school is a necessary and exciting change. Let’s keep the momentum going in Wisconsin and continue to vouch for homeschooling and school choice in order to protect children and parents’ rights. Hopefully next legislative session we can expand educational freedom in Wisconsin. 

Wisconsin Family Action PAC Congratulates Winning Endorsed Candidates

Madison, WI – Wisconsin Family Action PAC (WFA PAC), the state’s only conservative pro-family PAC, endorsed Judge Shelley Grogan for Wisconsin Court of Appeals District II, John Jagler for State Senate District 13, and Elijah Behnke for State Assembly District 89, prior to yesterday’s Spring Nonpartisan General Election. Each of these candidates prevailed in his/her respective races.

WFA PAC director Julaine Appling commented, “We are proud to have endorsed these candidates and congratulate them on their victories and their hard-fought campaigns. Judge Grogan will be an excellent addition to the Court of Appeals. She clearly understands the role of the judiciary and promises to exercise judicial restraint, while putting into practice her textualist interpretation of the Constitution.

Read full press release HERE.

BREAKING: WI Supreme Court Strikes Down Evers’ Mask Mandate; WFA Applauds Decision

On Wednesday, March 31, 2021, the Wisconsin Supreme Court struck down Governor Tony Ever’s illegal mask mandate.

“The 4-3 ruling was issued in a 78-page decision Wednesday morning.

Republican lawmakers filed suit in October on the mandate.

They said the governor did not have the authority to extend the state’s public health emergency beyond 60 days without approval from the legislature.

The majority of justices agreed.”

Read more HERE

Wisconsin Family Action president Julaine Appling says, “This long-awaited decision by the state’s high court is encouraging. The rule of law must be respected, most especially in a crisis. The judicial branch has exercised its appropriate authority to check the power of the executive branch. Governor Evers will now need to work within the lawful limits of his authority.”

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!

No Excuses—Commit to Vote! Sign the Pledge Today.

ELECTION DAY 2020 is coming! There’s so much at stake for our country in November. We can’t afford to go backward—and by promising to vote and then making sure you do you are taking an important step in making sure we can continue moving forward. CLICK HERE NOW to solidify your commitment to VOTE on November 3, 2020. Then be a friend and share this pledge with your family, friends, neighbors, church leadership and community! Join with thousands of Wisconsin citizens in pledging to be part of the solution, not part of the problem!

Justice Daniel Kelly Flies Solo at Candidate Forum | Slide Show

On Monday, March 16, Wisconsin Family Council (WFC) and DaySpring Church hosted, for the first time ever, the Wisconsin Supreme Court Candidate Forum at DaySpring Church in Pewaukee. Candidates invited were Justice Daniel Kelly and Jill Karofsky. Karofsky did not attend the forum and did not respond to any of our invitation efforts.

On Tuesday, April 7, 2020, Wisconsin has a critical Supreme Court election. As part of our organization’s attempt to do our best to engage with Wisconsin families about issues of great importance in The Badger State, we provided this candidate forum so you, as a voter, could take advantage of this opportunity to hear the candidates’ views on the role of the court, the upcoming election, their qualifications and more. Due to precautions stemming from the Coronavirus and in consideration of the Governor’s request that there be no events with over 50 people gathered (at that time), we were not able to allow the general public to attend this event. Instead, we made it available via our Facebook as a “live” event and our media host, VCY America, aired the event live via radio and also video recorded the Candidate Forum to be watched at your convenience HERE.

We extend our gratitude to our panelists, Daniel Reehoff of DaySpring Church and Jim Schneider, Executive Director of VCY America, as well as our media host, VCY America. We also thank Justice Daniel Kelly for his attendance and time spent discussing his judicial philosophy and responding to numerous questions from our panelists. Justice Kelly’s wife Elisa accompanied him to the forum.

Photo, left to right: Julaine Appling, Jim Schneider, Daniel Reehoff, Justice Daniel Kelly

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT:  If you missed the forum, you may simply CLICK HERE and watch at your convenience.

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MILWAUKEE & DANE COUNTY CLERKS BLATANTLY UNCONSTITUTIONAL

Wisconsin Family Action calls on Attorney General to stop the lawlessness

Madison – Last Friday, Milwaukee County Clerk Joe Czarnezki and Dane County Clerk Scott McDonell announced they are now issuing domestic partnership registrations to opposite-sex couples, in direct violation of existing state law.

In 2009, Governor Doyle and the state legislature enacted as a part of the state’s budget a statewide, same-sex-only domestic partnership registry that in many ways mimics marriage.  Chapter 770 of the state statutes clearly includes the requirement that the two persons involved in this domestic partnership must be “members of the same sex” S.770.05 (5).

“It is unbelievable that these arrogant county clerks think they can just ignore the law and do what they want,” said Julaine Appling, president of Wisconsin Family Action (WFA).  “This is an amazing overreach of power. They are simply taking matters into their own hands and saying the State Constitution and any other binding law doesn’t matter.  County clerks have absolutely no authority to unilaterally make law.  None whatsoever.”

Wisconsin Family Action has fought against this registry from the time it was proposed.  WFA sued alleging the registry violated the Marriage Protection Amendment passed by nearly 60% of the people in 2006. The case went to the Wisconsin Supreme Court, where WFA lost in 2013.  At no point in these protracted legal proceedings was there anything in any court opinion, including in the Supreme Court’s ruling, indicating that the registry had to include opposite-sex couples.  Likewise, the state legislature has not taken any action whatsoever regarding this registry.

Since last June, WFA has repeatedly asked elected officials, from the Governor down, to dissolve this domestic partnership registry, arguing that in light of the US Supreme Court in June 2015 legalizing same-sex marriage, the registry was no longer needed and was in fact discriminatory against heterosexual couples.  Other than State Representative Jeremy Thiesfeldt (R-Fond du Lac), no official was inclined to take action.

Appling continued, “This registry was in retaliation against the marriage amendment.  Proponents said it wasn’t ‘fair’ that same-sex couples couldn’t get benefits. The liberal progressives wrote and passed this law to try to erode marriage—and now liberals are trying to take it a step further with no legal authority again using the ‘fair’ argument.  Clearly, making marriage utterly meaningless is their endgame. And clearly they will stop at nothing to get what they want—including ignoring the law.  We are calling on Wisconsin Attorney General Brad Schimel to issue an immediate injunction against this lawlessness.”

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

Copy available online here.

OBAMA DECREE ENDANGERS STUDENTS Wisconsin must push back against this unconstitutional power grab

Madison – Today President Obama formalized what he has been threatening for several weeks. Through a letter from the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Department of Education (DOE), every public school district in the country has been at least implicitly threatened with loss of federal funding if they don’t provide for transgendered students’ unfettered, unquestioned access to the restrooms and changing rooms of their choice.

Julaine Appling, president of Wisconsin Family Action, commented, “President Obama has once again overstepped his authority. The administration cannot unilaterally decide to change the meaning of the word sex as used in Title IX.  Congress, which established Title IX 44 years ago, and the Courts, have never defined sex to include ‘gender orientation.’ Regardless of what he thinks, President Obama is not a king.  He doesn’t get to change the law and issue decrees based on his whims and wishes. That’s not how America works.

“This issue is about the privacy, safety and dignity of all students.  With his edict today, President Obama has essentially put a price tag on the privacy and safety of students—especially female students.  He’s threatened to withhold federal funding if schools don’t conform to his extreme political agenda that includes allowing males in the girls’ bathrooms and locker rooms and girls in the boys’ facilities.  This puts the privacy rights, safety and well-being of all students at risk. And what about girls who have been sexually assaulted? This decree says their fears are meaningless and should not be considered.  At a time when our society is decrying campus and date rape and rails against a so-called ‘war on women,’ you would think the government wouldn’t be interested in putting these women in situations that could easily re-traumatize them.”

Wisconsin Family Action asserts that today’s mandate is completely unnecessary.  Common-sense accommodations are called for, not a blatant usurpation of the right of states and local school districts that takes an extreme and dangerous approach.

Wisconsin Family Action calls on all Wisconsin elected officials and public school administrators to stand against this most recent dictate from President Obama and his administration.  Wisconsin schools must reject this extreme political agenda foisted on our state and our schools by an out-of-control federal government and take reasonable measures to safeguard the privacy rights and safety of all students.

Appling noted, “North Carolina has led the way on this issue and has stood firm; we need to follow their lead.”

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

Online Copy Available here.

NORTH CAROLINA FIGHTS BACK AGAINST OBAMA ADMINISTRATION’S BULLYING

Wisconsin Family Action stands with Gov. McCrory

Madison – Today, North Carolina, under the leadership of Governor Pat McCrory (R), responded full-force to the Obama Administration’s bullying regarding the state’s recently enacted, common-sense law (H.B. 2) that protects the bodily privacy and safety of its citizens, especially women and girls.  The state filed a lawsuit today alleging that the federal government has overstepped its bounds with this “baseless and blatant overreach” in threatening to withhold millions of federal dollars to the state if the state doesn’t comply with its interpretation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

Wisconsin Family Action president Julaine Appling commented, “Led by President Obama, this administration continues its pattern of capriciously circumventing Congress and making law with its outrageous and egregious declarations. This time the Department of Justice is the hammer. Fortunately for all of us, North Carolina has a courageous governor in Pat McCrory—a governor who refuses to be bullied by an out-of-control federal government.

“This issue isn’t just in North Carolina. It’s right here in Wisconsin in various municipalities and in our public schools. Representative Jesse Kremer and Senator Steve Nass authored a bill this last session to address this issue in our public schools. Unfortunately, the bill died in committee. But Rep. Kremer has made it clear, he’s coming back next session with a similar bill that will protect the bodily privacy of students in our public schools.”

The May 4 letter from the Department of Justice to Governor McCrory alleges that H.B. 2 is discriminatory.  The letter references federal Title IX education programs and funding as it relates to the University of North Carolina, which is a veiled threat of stopping the millions of dollars in Title IX funding to UNC. H.B. 2 requires, among other things, that all state employees use the restrooms and changing facilities that correspond to their biological sex as stated on their birth certificates. Title IX is generally interpreted in light of how Title VII is interpreted.

“The net result of the Obama Administration’s action will be the rewriting of Title IX without authority and thereby forcing Obama’s ‘bathroom agenda’ in schools across the country, including in Wisconsin. This is constitutionally wrong, and it is definitely not in the best interest of students. Wisconsin Family Action stands firmly with Governor McCrory against the Department of Justice’s bullying,” Appling stated.

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

 

Wisconsin Family Action PAC Endorses Ted Cruz for President

Madison, WI – Wisconsin Family Action Federal PAC (WFA PAC) announced today that it has endorsed Ted Cruz for president.

Following is a statement from WFA PAC director, Julaine Appling:

“WFA PAC is pleased to endorse US Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) for president. We believe Sen. Cruz has the character, the temperament and the right values to lead America. He has proven throughout his career and during the campaign that he understands the importance of strengthening, preserving and promoting in this country natural marriage and family, the sanctity of human life and constitutionally-provided religious freedom. Read more here.

 

GOVERNOR WALKER SIGNS BILLS DEFUNDING PLANNED PARENTHOOD & RESPECTING WISCONSIN TAXPAYERS

Bills redirect taxpGov Walker signs pro-life billsayer dollars away from state’s largest abortion provider

Madison – “We couldn’t agree with Governor Walker more,” said Julaine Appling, president of Wisconsin Family Action. “As he noted at today’s billing signing, every taxpayer in Wisconsin, whether or not they are pro-life, should be pleased that with the signing of these bills millions of their hard-earned tax dollars will stop being used inefficiently and wastefully. And we would add, even fraudulently.”

Today, at a beautiful pregnancy resource center, Life’s Connection in Waukesha, Governor Scott Walker signed two bills into law, Assembly Bill 310 and Senate Bill 238.  Assembly Bill 310 redirects federal Title X funds away from organizations that provide abortions and to other qualified health centers in the state.  For the last 35 years, Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin has been the sole recipient of this money.

Read more here.

TOUGH QUESTIONS FOR DONALD TRUMP FROM WISCONSIN’S AND AMERICA’S FAMIILIES

Wisconsin Family Action and its national family policy alliance say questions remain for Donald Trump.

Madison – Wisconsin Family Action, along with CitizenLink and its national alliance of nearly 40 state-based family policy councils representing millions of Evangelicals nationwide, today released an open letter to presidential candidate Donald Trump calling on him to answer direct questions on his policy positions.

Julaine Appling, president of Wisconsin Family Action, said, “Time is ticking. We want Mr. Trump to clear up his contradictory record on issues tens of thousands of Wisconsin citizens care about. We have invited Mr. Trump several times to join our Presidential Candidate Teleconference Series. He has yet to accept, leaving our constituents wondering.”

Read more here.

WISCONSIN FAMILY ACTION COMMENDS STATE ASSEMBLY FOR PROTECTING TAXPAYERS BY DEFUNDING PLANNED PARENTHOOD

Madison – “Stopping waste, fraud and abuse has been a hallmark of the state legislature recently, and today the Assembly stepped up once again to protect Wisconsin taxpayers from these misuses of their hard-earned tax dollars,” said Julaine Appling, president of Wisconsin Family Action.

This afternoon the State Assembly passed a bill (SB 238) requiring certain family-planning organizations, including Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin, to bill the state and its tax payers the actual acquisition cost of prescription drugs it purchases and dispenses through a Medicaid drug program, plus these organizations can bill for a defined dispensing fee. The bill passed on a 61-35 vote along party lines.

Read more here.

WISCONSIN FAMILY ACTION COMMENDS WISCONSIN’S PRO-LIFE MEMBERS OF CONGRESS & ATTORNEY GENERAL

Madison – Last week 34 US Senators and 140 Members of the US House of Representatives submitted a friend-of-the-court brief supporting the right of states to pass laws regarding protecting the health and well-being of women seeking an abortion. Among those senators and members of the House are Wisconsin’s US Senator Ron Johnson (R) and US House of Representatives members Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-CD 1), Jim Sensenbrenner (R-CD 5), Glenn Grothman (R-CD 6), Sean Duffy (R-CD 7) and Reid Ribble (R-CD 8).  The case, Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, is scheduled for oral arguments on Wednesday, March 2, before the US Supreme Court.  The Court will likely issue an opinion in this case by the end of June.

Read more here.

WISCONSIN FAMILY ACTION TO LEGISLATORS: DAILY FANTASY SPORTS IS GAMBLING

Madison –  “I can declare that a dog is a cat and that doesn’t change the truth or the reality—even if I dress the dog up like a cat.  It’s still a dog,” declared Wisconsin Family Action president Julaine Appling in a public hearing yesterday.

The Assembly Committee on State Affairs and Government Operations held a hearing Wednesday on a bill, Assembly Bill 800, that goes to great lengths to try to convince people that gambling is not gambling.  The bill blatantly declares that Daily Fantast Sports (DFS) is not gambling and creates a means to legalize the games and regulate them, ostensibly for “consumer protection” reasons.

Read more here.