Government and Political News: All four Dem. state Senate candidates easily won their primariesWisconsin News
-- Four Democratic state Senate candidates easily won their recall primaries.
Four Democratic state Senate candidates easily won their recall primaries. They all got 64-to-72-percent of the vote against fake Democrats who were put up by Republicans to assure that no general recall elections would be held yesterday. Fort Atkinson photographer Lori Compas had the biggest margin of victory, 72-to-28-percent over fake Democrat Gary Ellerman. Compas will now face Republican Senate leader Scott Fitzgerald on June fifth. In the Racine area, former Senator John Lehman will have a rematch with Republican Van Wanggaard – who defeated Lehman in 2010. Lehman easily outpolled fake Democrat Tamra Varebrook, 68-to-32 percent. In the Eau Claire area, former Representative Kristen Dexter won her Democratic Senate primary over James Engel, 64-to-36 percent. And Assembly Democrat Donna Seidel of Wausau won by the same 64-36 margin over Jim Buckley. Seidel will now face Assembly Republican Jerry Petrowski on June fifth. Petrowski was the only Republican to run after Senator Pam Galloway – who had been targeted for recall – left her post in March. None of the fake Democrats bothered to campaign. They were set up to assure that all the general recall elections would be held on the same day next month.
The head of the state firefighters’ union won the right to try-and-recall Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch on June fifth. Mahlon Mitchell of Madison easily won a three-way Democratic primary yesterday, with 52-percent of the vote. Fake Democrat Isaac Weix finished second with 26-percent, ahead of Milwaukee private investigator Ira Robins who had 22-percent. Kleefisch was not on the ballot yesterday, because she had no G-O-P primary opposition. Mitchell is a Madison fire-fighter who received the endorsement of state Democratic Party leaders, much to Robins’ dismay. Weix – who was put up by Republicans to assure a primary – received 197-thousand votes. And some could have come from Republican voters to try and give the Democrats a weak nominee for lieutenant governor. Milwaukee radio talk show host Mark Belling told his listeners he voted for both Walker and Weix, as voters could cross over for each office. Unlike the regular elections, the governor and lieutenant governor candidates do not run as a team – as the incumbents stand for recall challenges on their own.
Six Democratic state lawmakers say Wisconsin could lose its federal share of funding for the Family-Care program, but the state’s health secretary denies it. The six lawmakers pointed to a letter from federal Medicaid officials in late March, which said that Wisconsin is not complying with federal rules – and if they don’t make changes by Monday, almost 900-million-dollars in annual funding for Family-Care could be in jeopardy. The program keeps the elderly and disabled out of nursing homes. The state lifted its one-year-old enrollment limit on Family-Care last month, after being ordered to do so by the federal government. And state Health Services Secretary Dennis Smith told the Wisconsin State Journal yesterday that the program is in full compliance with federal mandates – and the federal funding is quote, “not in danger of termination.” Medicaid officials said in March that Wisconsin had only a short time to meet several conditions. They include notifying beneficiaries that the enrollment cap was lifted, identifying people should be in the program, and letting them know they could be reimbursed if they were turned away earlier. But Smith told Medicaid officials in late April that the state shouldn’t have to provide any retroactive reimbursements, because last year’s enrollment cap complied with the federal health reform law. Therefore, he said any reimbursement mandate now would be quote, “coercive.” The Democrats who expressed concerns said the Joint Finance Committee should meet this week, and have Smith clarify some things. The committee’s co-chairs have not commented. The six Democrats are Representatives Cory Mason and Jon Richards, and Senators Bob Jauch, Lena Taylor, Dave Hansen, and Jennifer Shilling.