WILL brings on expert witnesses to protect parental rights in Kettle Moraine case 

WILL brings on expert witnesses to protect parental rights in Kettle Moraine case 

Last summer, Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty (WILL) and the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) filed a lawsuit against Kettle Moraine School District (KMSD) for its gender identity policy that allows children to “change” their gender identity at school without parental consent. The policy also prohibits district employees from notifying parents of their child’s “transition” and even instructs staff to override a parent’s objection. In this case, at least one parent called and asked the school to call a daughter by her given feminine name and to use only feminine pronouns. The school refused.

Now, WILL and ADF have brought on two experts in support of summary judgment in this case. The experts specialize in gender dysphoria, asserting that school personnel socially transitioning a minor as is happening in this school district violates widely accepted mental health principles and practice.

Dr. Erica E. Anderson is a transgender clinical psychologist from Berkeley, California. Over the last 40 years, she has worked with hundreds of children and young adults struggling with their gender identity. She has also been a board member for the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH) and served as the President of USPATH (the United States arm of WPATH).

Dr. Anderson’s affidavit states, “A school policy that involves school adult personnel in socially transitioning a child or adolescent without the consent of parents or over their objection violates widely accepted mental health principles and practice.”

The second expert, Dr. Stephen Levine, is a psychiatrist and professor at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. He helped develop the 5th version of the WPATH guidelines and served as the court-appointed expert in the first major case to reach a federal court of appeals pertaining to surgery for transgender prisoners. 

Dr. Levine’s publications include “Transitioning back to maleness” (2018), “Ethical Concerns About Emerging Treatment Paradigms for Gender Dysphoria” (2017), “Meanings and political implications of ‘psychopathology’ in a gender identity clinic: A report of 10 cases” (2009), “The standards of care for gender identity disorders” (1998), among many others. 

If the Waukesha County judge grants summary judgment, then the parents win. This would be incredibly encouraging and right. As the parents’ attorneys argue, not only is the school’s policy harmful to children, it’s an unconstitutional violation of the parents’ rights. School districts statewide and across the country should be watching this case closely. 

The Wisconsin Constitution protects the “inherent right” of parents to “direct the upbringing and education of children under their control.” For the sake of children’s safety and well-being, parents must be the primary decision-makers when it comes to their children’s upbringing, education, and mental health. No school has the right to override parents in any way, especially when it comes to something as personal and important as gender. 

A hearing for this case is scheduled for April 19th, and a ruling is expected in the late spring or summer. Hopefully, Dr. Levine and Dr. Anderson guide the Court to a decision that will protect children and parent’s rights.

Sen. Chris Kapenga aims to eliminate the state income tax to help families thrive

Sen. Chris Kapenga aims to eliminate the state income tax to help families thrive

Wisconsin is losing families—families with children—to states like Texas and Florida, where there is no income tax. Last year 10,000 more Wisconsin families left the state than moved here. This isn’t an anomaly; it’s a trend—a trend with present and future implications for our economy and much more. When those families leave, there’s little likelihood of the parents returning to retire or the children coming back for work or to eventually establish their own families.

When Wisconsin’s best natural resource—its married dad-and-mom families with children—leaves the state in significant numbers, Wisconsin’s present and future are imperiled. This family structure is the only one that gives more than it takes in relationship to government “handouts.” 

Our state is currently sitting on a projected $6.6 billion surplus, making significant tax cuts a plausible option. The government is taking more than they need out of people’s paychecks. Thankfully, there is agreement among Wisconsin Republicans that taxes need to be cut; but opinions differ regarding how to do so.

Senate Majority Leader Devin LeMahieu (R-Oostburg) wants to implement a flat income tax of 3.5 percent. Senate President Chris Kapenga (R-Delafield), however, wants to join the nine states with no income tax. If we want to keep families in Wisconsin, this is the way to go. 

“I think that, if we’re going to do this (tax cuts) and we’re going to do something bold and we’re really going to attract workers to the state and bring more families to the state, (we should) go to no income tax like Florida,” said Kapenga.

Making Wisconsin more economically competitive compared to states that are getting our very best is a smart move, and with this “surplus,” now is the time to give this serious consideration. It would also set Wisconsin apart from other states in the Midwest. At a minimum, such a move might change the trend.

Republicans have enough votes to pass tax reform and a new state budget, but they would most likely not be able to garner enough votes to override a veto from Gov. Evers.

Evers has not yet said what his new state budget proposal will look like, but Kapenga believes he will ask for more money yet again.

“He is going to come to the trough,” Kapenga said. “Basically, I think he’s going to try and take taxpayer money and sift it out to the different special interest groups that he wants to take care of.”

Wisconsin families should not be forced to pay the government any more than is absolutely necessary. Hopefully, Republicans can agree on Kapenga’s plan to eliminate the income tax and convince Gov. Evers that this is the best move for Wisconsin. Families thrive when they are able to keep more of their hard-earned money, and when families flourish, so too does our state. As the family, so the state.

US Rep. Mike Gallagher introduces vital bill to ban TikTok

US Rep. Mike Gallagher introduces vital bill to ban TikTok

Earlier this month, a bipartisan group of Members of Congress introduced a bill that would ban the Chinese-owned social media platform called TikTok nationwide. 

TikTok is directly tied the Chinese Communist Party, as TikTok’s parent company ByteDance lists Chinese state media outlets in its employment history. Further, 50 former Chinese state media employees currently hold positions at TikTok, including a “content strategy manager” who had served as chief correspondent for China’s Xinhua News.

Director of the Strategic Technologies Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies James Lewis believes the Chinese government is using information they get from TikTok to “better tailor their propaganda for a Western audience.”

Florida Sen. Marco Rubio (R), Illinois Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-CD8), and Wisconsin Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-CD8) are leading the charge to ban TikTok due to its communist ties. 

In a press release, Wisconsin Rep. Mike Gallagher wrote:

“TikTok is digital fentanyl that’s addicting Americans, collecting troves of their data, and censoring their news. It’s also an increasingly powerful media company that’s owned by ByteDance, which ultimately reports to the Chinese Communist Party—America’s foremost adversary.

Allowing the app to continue to operate in the U.S. would be like allowing the U.S.S.R. to buy up The New York Times, Washington Post, and major broadcast networks during the Cold War. No country with even a passing interest in its own security would allow this to happen, which is why it’s time to ban TikTok and any other CCP-controlled app before it’s too late.”

The ANTI-SOCIAL CCP Act aims to “protect Americans by blocking and prohibiting all transactions from any social media company in, or under the influence of, China, Russia, and several other foreign countries of concern.”

China’s national intelligence law requires Chinese tech companies to give any data they collect from users to China’s government. American researchers have been voicing privacy and security concerns about the app for years.

TikTok has even engaged in illegal activity to collect users’ data. In 2019, the social media platform was fined by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission for illegally “collecting and exposing locations of young children, as well as failing to delete information on underage children when instructed to do so.”

In 2020, TikTok found an iPhone system loophole and collected personal user data, including cryptocurrency wallet addresses and passwords. In 2021, TikTok was sued for transferring copious amounts of private user data to China. 

Rep. Krishnamoorthi noted that the Chinese Communist Party is attempting to gain any advantage “against the United States through espionage and mass surveillance.” Therefore, it’s vital that we ban social media networks controlled by this hostile power to prevent the platform, which collects data on tens of millions of Americans every day, from being weaponized against us. 

To make matters worse, the app indoctrinates children with dangerous progressive ideas. Gender ideology activists are flooding TikTok with propaganda, causing children to cave to the social contagion of transgenderism and seek gender “transition” procedures. 

Rep. Gallagher and Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson (R), joined by four of their Wisconsin colleagues- Reps. Glenn Grothman, Scott Fitzgerald, Bryan Steil, and Tom Tiffany- called on Governor Evers to ban the TikTok app on any state-owned device. To date, Governor Evers has ignored the request. Such a move is not without precedent. Governors Kristi Noem (SD), Greg Abbott (TX), Henry McMaster (SC), Larry Hogan (MD), Kevin Stitt (OK), Pete Ricketss (NE), Spencer Cox (UT), and Kay Ivey (AL) have all taken such action.

Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty earlier this month issued a report that “recaps the meteoric rise of the China-based social media app…and recounts the invasive ways that the software records data from its users.” The report recommends Wisconsin heed the warnings and take actions similar to these other states.

Washington County Executive Josh Schoemann recently banned TikTok on Washington County devices. This is the first, and to date, the only Wisconsin county to have taken such action. At the federal level, however, the U.S. House Administration Arm has banned TikTok on official devices. This is a good start, but we need to do more.

This federal bill is absolutely essential, and we are hopeful that Rep. Gallagher’s colleagues will agree. Closer to home, we need Governor Evers to take the warnings seriously and, at a minimum, prohibit the app on any government-issued device; and we need more counties to follow the example of Washington County. The Chinese Communist Party is a serious threat to the United States’ security and banning the Chinese-owned social media platform is common sense. In the meantime, parents should closely monitor their children’s social media use and ensure they stay off the app. 

Update:

Gov. Evers announced that he will ban TikTok on government devices. 

In response, Rep. Gallagher said, “TikTok is a CCP trojan horse that can track someone’s location, monitor their keystrokes, and collect other pieces of sensitive information about them. This app belongs nowhere near any part of our government and I’m glad Governor Evers finally made the decision to ban TikTok on state devices. Now that Governor Evers has recognized the threat posed by the app, I hope he will also delete his campaign’s TikTok account.”

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.