Governor Scott Walker
Gov. Walker has struggled to keep two education promises he made during his successful 2014 campaign for a second term:
- Repeal what are known as the Common Core standards for K-12 schools.
- Provide universal access to college courses.
Walker now is campaigning to win a third term in the November 2018 election. When we last checked on these promises, more than two years ago, we issued a rating of Stalled on both of them. The governor wasn’t making much progress.
With the end of Walker’s second term looming and no sessions of the state Legislature scheduled before then, both are rated Broken Promises.
Congressman Mike Gallagher
Rep. Gallagher and a group of his colleagues sent a letter to House leadership, urging them to cancel the August recess until the House finishes its work on behalf of the American people. The letter is a part of a broader Drain the Swamp effort, led by Gallagher, to hold Congress accountable. At the forefront of this effort is Gallagher’s Do Your Job Act, which would prohibit Congress from taking a break in legislative activity until it passes all 12 appropriations bills.
Source: Gallagher press release
Senator Tammy Baldwin
On May 30, Sen. Baldwin hosted a roundtable discussion on apprenticeships with local businesses, workforce readiness leaders, labor and workers at PPG in Oak Creek to highlight her legislation that would invest in public-private partnerships, boost apprenticeship programs, and help close the skills gap.
“In Wisconsin, I’ve seen how public-private partnerships can best address the workforce readiness challenges we face. Apprenticeships are a proven way to provide workers with the skills they need to succeed and our businesses with the skilled workforce they need to grow our economy,” Baldwin said. “This legislation will scale up our apprenticeship programs and help close the skills gap. When we bring businesses and technical colleges together we can train people for a career rather than just a job.”
The Promoting Apprenticeships through Regional Training Networks for Employers’ Required Skills (PARTNERS) Act would establish a grant program to support the creation and expansion of industry and sector partnerships to help small- and medium-sized businesses develop work-based learning programs and provide mentoring and support services for workers. A bipartisan House version of this legislation was introduced by Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR) and Congressman Drew Ferguson (R-GA).
Source: Baldwin press release
Senator Ron Johnson
Sen. Johnson, the author of the federal “right-to-try” law signed by President Trump last week, wants to make one thing clear: His new law is meant to weaken the Food and Drug Administration.
“This law intends to diminish the FDA’s power over people’s lives, not increase it,” he wrote in a May 31 letter to Commissioner Scott Gottlieb to request a meeting about the implementation of the new law, which sets up a new pathway for patients with life-threatening illnesses to request access to experimental therapies the FDA has not approved. Johnson’s comments give new credence to a longstanding criticism of the law from medical ethicists and several former FDA commissioners, who suggested that a separate pathway with less FDA oversight would undermine the agency’s ability to oversee product safety and efficacy. During the legislative process, supporters often said the legislation was about giving dying patients new hope, not about weakening any agency. There were hints of that intent, however. The law’s main advocate was the libertarian think tank the Goldwater Institute, and Americans for Prosperity, a group backed by the conservative Koch brothers, also offered advertising and advocacy support.
President Donald Trump
A judge ruled Tuesday that President Donald Trump can be deposed in a defamation lawsuit brought last year by Summer Zervos, a former contestant on The Apprentice who says Trump kissed and groped her after she appeared on the show. Zervos is one of more than a dozen women who have accused Trump of unwanted sexual contact. The president has vehemently denied all of the women’s claims, which he called “100 percent fabricated,” and he retweeted a tweet describing Zervos’s claim as a “hoax.” Zervos filed a defamation claim against Trump in January 2017 over those denials. Lawyers for both sides must issue their demands for documents as part of discovery by July 13, and those responses must be provided by Sept. 27, Judge Jennifer Schechter ordered Tuesday. Both parties are ordered to submit third party subpoenas by March 23, 2019. Schechter ordered both parties to submit to depositions too, with a deadline of Jan. 31, 2019. All depositions of people who are “non-parties” to the case must be conducted by Feb. 28. She ordered fact discovery to be completed by April 12. Trump could still avoid a deposition, though. His lawyers have appealed to New York’s highest court in hopes of avoiding it. His legal team has argued that Zervos’ lawsuit is politically motivated.