Vol. 6    No. 26
December 29, 2011

The Capital City Hues
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EDITORIAL STAFF

Jonathan Gramling
Publisher & Editor

Clarita G. Mendoza
Sales Manager

Contributing Writers
Rita Adair, Ike Anyanike, Paul
Barrows, Alfonso Zepeda
Capistran, Theola Carter, Fabu,
Andrew Gramling, Lang Kenneth
Haynes, Eileen Cecille Hocker,
Heidi Pascual,  & Martinez White
UW PEOPLE Scholar Jessy Liddell
Taking Care of Business
Reflections/Jonathan Gramling
                     Looking forward to 2012
It’s going to be a pretty fascinating year for politics in the city of Madison and Wisconsin. On December
19th, the Madison Metropolitan School District Board of Education voted against the charter for Madison
Prep, the Urban League of Greater Madison conceived non-instrumentality 6-12 grade, single sex charter
schools for boys and girls. The vote was 2-5 against with a vote of 3-4 to start it up in 2013 after the
district’s contract with Madison Teachers Inc. expires.

This coming spring, two of the board seats are up for election. Lucy Mathiak, one of the Yes votes for
Madison Prep, is not running for reelection. Multi-millionaire Mary Burke has declared for Mathiak’s
seat. Burke has committed $2.5 million to Madison Prep over five years when it becomes operational.
Her opponent will be Michael Flores, a Madison firefighter.

The other seat up for election is currently held by Arlene Silveira who voted against the Madison Prep
charter. Silveira is running for reelection and will be opposed by Nichelle Nichols, vice president of
education and learning at the Urban League of Greater Madison. Nichols has stated her support for
Madison Prep.

These are going to be interesting races to watch. Will the entrance of Burke into the race create a new
financial level that one needs to be on in order to run for the school board? Will it up the financial
stakes? And if Burke and Nichols win, I would imagine that it would lead to a revote on the Madison
Prep issue. Could Madison Prep be in the future of Madison public schools in the fall of 2013 after all?

Then we have the effort to recall Governor Walker. More than likely, United Wisconsin has collected
close to the 540,208 signatures needed to force a recall election of Governor Scott Walker. It was
reported that they had 507,000 signatures over two weeks ago and hope to collect a total of 750,000
signatures by the deadline of January 14th.

I think we can plan on having a gubernatorial recall election sometime this spring and quite possibly in
early April when local elections for the Madison school board will be held. But that is still up in the air ad
the Government Accountability Board (GAB) will have to verify the signatures to make sure that none
were fraudulently obtained and to eliminate duplicate signatures. While statutorily, the GAP had 30 days
to complete this process, they have already asked for more time and resources to get the job done.

The Republicans will also have the opportunity to challenge signatures although the burden of proof will
be on them to prove that a signature is invalid. It would take them a lot of people hours and resources to
be able to prove that signatures are invalid, so I think that most of the challenges will be on duplicate
signatures. Or the Republicans could take the whole thing to court and tie it up there indefinitely. There is
a whole lot of challenging that could be going on.

Governor Walker has already started the recall advertising season. He has already raised over $5.1
million and I’m sure will raise much more than that with the Koch Brothers donating unlimited money to
keep Walker in power and decrease the chances that President Obama can take Wisconsin in his
reelection bid this year.

And once the recall petitions are filed and verified and an election date set, who are the Democrats
going to field as a candidate and where are they going to get the money to match Walker’s onslaught of
advertising, which he started a month ago. Stay tuned because all of a sudden, things will get very
interesting and events will speed up.

And speaking of the presidential election, did you see the news item today that had Republican
presidential candidate Rick Santorum playing the race card in his effort to surge in the Iowa polls
because the Iowa caucuses will be meeting January 3rd to vote for the Republican nominees. According
to CBSNews.com, “Rick Santorum singled out blacks as being recipients of assistance through federal
benefit programs, telling a mostly-white audience he doesn't want to ‘make black people's lives better by
giving them somebody else's money.’”

This is pretty scary since it was reported that Santorum was experiencing a late surge in the Iowa polls.
Someone should tell Santorum that it is Whites who receive the most welfare in this country. I hope
Iowans don’t send this race-baiting conservative to the top of their presidential preference heap. We will
see.