Gov. Scott Walker
Walker told donors via a June 19 email that he’s still praying over whether to run for president in 2016, but he believes he is “uniquely qualified to lead this country.” Walker says in the email, “I have been praying about this decision for a long time.” He said back in November he would only run after praying and feeling called to do it. In a not-so-veiled swipe at fellow Republican Jeb Bush and Democrat Hillary Rodham Clinton, Walker said in the email that he “didn’t inherit fame or fortune and I don’t think being President is by birthright.”
Source: WISN-TV, Milwaukee
Representative Reid Ribble
Ribble joined the majority of the House of Representatives in passing Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) with a vote of 218 to 208. “When we increase trade, Wisconsin’s workers win,” Ribble said. “Voting to approve TPA puts Congress in the driver’s seat, allows us to set parameters for any potential trade deal that may occur, and makes sure that the public gets at least 60 days to read and weigh in on a potential trade deal before Congress votes on whether to accept it. I am hopeful that the Trans-Pacific Partnership deal will be a victory for Wisconsin, as it should open up new markets for our cheese, milk, and butter all over the world, but especially in Canada and Japan. I am continuing to weigh in with the U.S. Trade Representative regarding issues that are important to Wisconsin while the deal is being negotiated. The agreement will be publicly available well before any vote to approve or disapprove of it, and at that point we will be able to determine whether it’s a good deal for Wisconsin and America and vote accordingly.” TPA is a set of guidelines for the United States Trade Representative who is negotiating on behalf of the U.S. with 11 other countries on the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal. It is not a trade deal itself, nor does it approve any trade deals.
Source: Ribble press release
Senator Tammy Baldwin
Baldwin announced her plans to introduce major legislation aimed at providing safer and more effective pain management services to our nation’s veterans. On Aug. 30, 2014, U.S. Marine Veteran Jason Simcakoski died at the Tomah Veterans Affairs Medical Center as a result of mixed drug toxicity. The Jason Simcakoski Memorial Opioid Safety Act would provide VA with the tools it needs to help prevent this type of tragedy from occurring to other veterans and their families.
“I believe the VA’s overreliance on opioids has resulted in getting our veterans hooked instead of getting them the help they deserve,” said Baldwin. “The Jason Simcakoski Memorial Opioid Safety Act will take steps to address VA’s overuse of opioids and to improve quality pain management for veterans and their families, including by giving them a stronger voice in their care.”
“This is an opportunity to take all of this and learn from it. We have a chance to create a new path; or we can continue how we currently are and keep making the same mistakes we are today,” said Heather Simcakoski, Jason’s widow. “When I look back at the past, I want to know we made a difference. I want to believe we have leaders in our country who care. I want to inspire others to never give up because change is possible.”
“This legislation from Senator Baldwin is one of the most important actions we can take to save the lives of our greatest assets, our veterans,” said Marv Simcakoski, Jason’s father.
Source: Baldwin press release
President Barack Obama
Obama used the n-word during an interview released June 22 to make a point that there’s still plenty of room for America to combat racism. “Racism, we are not cured of it. And it’s not just a matter of it not being polite to say nigger in public,” Obama said in an interview for the podcast WTF with Marc Maron. “That’s not the measure of whether racism still exists or not. It’s not just a matter of overt discrimination. Societies don’t, overnight, completely erase everything that happened 200 to 300 years prior.”
The jarring comment comes as the nation is engaged in a debate over the role of race after a white supremacist killed nine African-Americans last week in a historically black church in Charleston. They also reflect a growing willingness for Obama to discuss race during the final years of his presidency.