The Wind in the School Voucher Program's Sails

In this update: 1. Big money for state elections keeps voucher program sailing 2. Time is right for redistricting reform 3. Good chums: Wisconsin’s senior senator and the NRA The Wind in the School Voucher Program’s Sails

Email date: 4/15/13

In this update:
1. Big money for state elections keeps voucher program sailing
2. Time is right for redistricting reform
3. Good chums: Wisconsin’s senior senator and the NRA

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Big money for state elections keeps voucher program sailing
After 23 years, Wisconsin’s program enabling parents to receive public vouchers to pay to send their children to private or religious schools has failed to deliver promised school improvement. Yet the governor and top legislative leaders are not talking about ending the lengthy experiment, they are pushing an ambitious expansion of the program. A new study issued by the Democracy Campaign sheds light on the likely reason this policy still has so much wind in its sails.

A podcast posted along with the report offers reflections on our findings.

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Time is right for redistricting reform
With the next national census seven years away and eight years until the next time state legislative and congressional districts are redrawn, there isn’t a better time to take the 2021 redistricting process out of the hands of the politicians and hand it over to an independent authority. Most state lawmakers won’t be in the Legislature eight years from now, so they don’t have to worry about how such reform might affect the makeup of their districts and their own political fortunes.

In hopes of reforming when the time for reforming’s good, the Democracy Campaign participated in a Capitol press conference last Thursday to promote new redistricting reform legislation. WisconsinEye, the state-level equivalent of C-SPAN, was there to televise the news conference. WDC director Mike McCabe’s remarks begin shortly after the 7-minute mark of the video. Mike also appeared on WKOW-TV’s “Capitol City Sunday” program to discuss the legislation.

News out of California shows the impact redistricting reform can have.

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Good chums: Wisconsin’s senior senator and the NRA
The latest post on our Big Money Blog provides valuable insight into why Wisconsin Senator Ron Johnson so willingly and frequently goes to the mat for the National Rifle Association.

A commentary posted on our blog two days earlier was picked up by The Capital Times and Milwaukee’s Small Business Times.