April 10, 2014

Rep. Don Pridemore announces retirement

Filed under: Wi Legislature — randallmelchert @ 10:25 am

Yesterday my state representative announced he is retiring. One of our rock solid county supervisors in Waukesha, Janel Brandtjen, has a very nice tribute to Rep. Pridemore on her site:

“Too many legislators believe in being ‘career politicians’ – when Don ran for office he pledged to fight for the conservative message, accomplish his mission, and not make a career out of being in office. Today, Don has finished his race, and everyone in his district is the better for him having served us in Madison.

Serving in elected office is not the glamorous job that people think – its a lot of door-knocking and hard work, and all who serve or run to serve should be commended.

March 25, 2014

2014 – April 1st – Election Day again!

Filed under: Elections — randallmelchert @ 7:34 pm

Tuesday, April 1st is another election day! For more information on your races check out:

January 31, 2014

2014 Races to Watch

Filed under: Uncategorized — randallmelchert @ 12:22 am

Not quite as big of a political year as in the past (aren’t we all grateful?) – so what will the future look like for us political junkies?

Governor: Scott Walker has a 47-41 lead in the ballot, 49-44 approval rating, and a 54-40 lead in “right track” (Marquette Law). As long as he doesn’t close any bridges, he should be re-elected (again) over challenger Mary Burke.

Attorney General: Will Brad Schimel avenge the defeat of the last Waukesha DA who attempted to gain the top law enforcement prize in the state? He has nailed down the endorsement of 66 DA’s and Sheriffs, and the existing AG. If the election were today, he’d have the organizational win over Ismael Ozanne, Jon Richards, and Susan Happ, but the election is not today. Fun Fact – Schimel could be the first Waukesha DA to become a Republican AG.

State Senate:  Currently GOP 18-15 DEM. For those who judge all things by Act 10, that is 17-16 (Schultz voted No). But Dale Schultz is retiring in SD 17 because while he has under $5,000 cash on hand, GOP challenger Howard Marklein has over $142,000 Cash on Hand. While the district is D+4, Marklein was re-elected in a district that went almost 60% for Obama.

Schultz’s retirement now makes the SD-21 GOP Primary the #1 primary in the state on August 12th. With incumbent John Lehman going for the Democrat nod for Lieutenant Governor, odds are that the winner of the Van Wangaard / Jonathan Steitz primary will win the seat.

If the D+2 seat stays with Kathleen Vinehout, and the R+4 seat stays with Mike Ellis (and all the other safer seats stay with their parties), the Act 10 vote will likely go from 17-16, to 19-14. This would tie post-2010, but replacing Schultz with Vinehout, and potentially with Steitz instead of Van, yield an even more conservative Senate than in 2010.

And all this would reshape the current list of the Most Powerful Politicians in Wisconsin….

January 23, 2014

The 250 most powerful politicians in Wisconsin

Filed under: Statistics — randallmelchert @ 9:23 am

Given the wealth of population data that we have in Wisconsin, and realizing that the Spring Elections are upon us, and having some free time over the holidays, here is a list of most of the elected (not including judges) officials in Wisconsin, and a formula to try to compare one elected official to another.

How is such a formula weighted? The basic rule of thumb is that the chief executive/highest elected official of a unit of government is as influential as the number of constituents represented. Thus Governor Scott Walker is valued at 5,726,000, while Keith Swenson, Town Chair of Wilkinson, is valued at 39. An assemblyman in the majority party is calculated to be slightly more than a generic assemblyman (because he is more likely to get legislation passed), an assemblyman in the minority party is slightly less. A legislator on JFC is significantly more (because they control the $20 billion + budget). A county board chair under a county executive is 1/2 of the executive, but is accredited the full value of the county if there is no executive.

And as always, some numbers are arbitrary. The Lieutenant Governor has let’s assume a 25% chance of becoming governor – therefore she is worth 1/4 the constituents of the Governor. Feel free to run your own calculations and adjust the weighting mechanism. Comment and let me know your thoughts on how you would modify the formulas.

So what’s in the master spreadsheet of the Most Powerful Politicians in Wisconsin?

  • The names of the 250 most powerful politicians in Wisconsin
  • The salaries of the 25 most powerful politicians in Wisconsin
  • A non-exhaustive list of over 3,000 politicians in “power-ranking”

Why a list such as this? Mainly so that one can see how many elected officials there are in Wisconsin, but mainly out of curiosity.

And to save you opening the Google Spreadsheet, here’s the top 25 most powerful politicians in Wisconsin:

  1. Scott Walker
  2. Rebecca Kleefisch
  3. J.B. Van Hollen
  4. Chris Abele
  5. Mike Ellis
  6. Tony Evers
  7. Tom Barrett
  8. Robin Vos
  9. Joseph T Parisi
  10. Marina Dimitrijevic
  11. Scott Fitzgerald
  12. Dan Vrakas
  13. Joe Leibham
  14. John Chisholm
  15. Alberta Darling
  16. Glenn Grothman
  17. Willie Hines
  18. Michael Bonds
  19. Frank Lasee
  20. Tyler August
  21. David Clarke, Jr
  22. Sheila Harsdorf
  23. Luther Olsen
  24. Mary Lazich
  25. Troy Streckenbach

See the rest of the list here!

October 15, 2013

Special Elections AD21 & AD69: Cash Race

Filed under: Statistics — randallmelchert @ 7:35 pm

In case you are growing wistful for campaign ads on TV, there’s two contested primaries next Tuesday. Who’s in the lead ? Well let’s look at their external fundraising (outside of loans and personal donations). Typically if people will part with their cash to give it to some candidate who has never held a state office and hasn’t even won a primary yet, that is symptomatic of significant support.

AD21: Oak Creek, WI
Jessie Rodriguez $6,330
Red Arnold $1,415
Tom Gehl $375
Chris Kujawa $350
Larry Gamble $0

AD69: Medford, WI
Kulp $17,589
Dahlen $5,200
Noble $2,500
Feddick $950

On the other hand, how much money are people spending whether it’s their money or others ?

AD21: Oak Creek, WI
Jessie Rodriguez $23,906 (includes AFC IE)
Larry Gamble $3,475
Ken Gehl $2,750
Red Arnold $1,268
Chris Kujawa $507

AD69: Medford, WI
Feddick $25,819 (includes AFC IE)
Kulp $13,085
Dahlen $8,337
Noble $4,371

Will these numbers correlate to next Tuesday’s results ? Let’s find out. ..

October 11, 2013

Milwaukee Breakwater Lighthouse

Filed under: Travel,Wisconsin Events — randallmelchert @ 11:46 am

Very cool developments going offshore Milwaukee – learn more about the  Milwaukee Breakwater Lighthouse and help support this nautical historical icon.

October 9, 2013

Legislative Retirement Scorecard

Filed under: Wi Legislature — randallmelchert @ 11:22 am

Who’s in – who’s out? Here’s the latest run down on 2012 and 2013 Wisconsin Legislative Retirement Scorecard.

2013 Special Elections:

2014 Retirements:

September 26, 2013

2013 Special Election Preview

Filed under: Uncategorized — randallmelchert @ 10:15 pm

2013 Special Elections:

Partisan Primary: October 22, 2013.

Special Election: November 19, 2013.

Assembly 69 (retiring Rep. Scott Suder) AD69 is a R+9 district, meaning the winner of the GOP primary will likely coast thru the general.

  • DEM – Kenneth Slezak
  • IND “Putting People Ahead of Politics” – Tim Swiggum
  • GOP – Bob Kulp (appears to be getting the establishment support, and turned in more nomination signatures than any other candidate)
  • GOP – Scott Kenneth Noble (getting support from Campaign For Liberty)
  • GOP – Alanna Feddick (turned in the 2nd most nomination signatures)
  • GOP – Tommy Dahlen

Assembly 21 (retiring Rep. Mark Honadel) AD21 is an R+5 district, allowing for a closer race, but still a high likelihood of remaining GOP.

  • DEM – Kenneth Coppola
  • GOP – Jessie Rodriguez (getting strong establishment support, and was endorsed by Rachel Campos-Duffy. Would be the first GOP Hispanic Rep as well as the first GOP Female Hispanic Rep.)
  • GOP – Chris Kujawa (landscaper, was endorsed by Scott Walker for his 2007 unsuccessful County Board race)
  • GOP – Ken Gehl (Oak Creek Common Council President)
  • GOP – Larry Gamble (Tea Party leader with Wisconsin Grandsons of Liberty, defeated by Jeff Stone in 2010 by 82%-18%)
  • GOP – Jason “Red” Arnold (political newcomer)

September 4, 2013

Elections by Year

Filed under: Elections — randallmelchert @ 2:03 pm

Now that the GAB has added the archives from elections.wi.gov (2001->Present), one can start to see different trends such as elections by year. The number is taken from the “official” lines of elections on the GAB election result page, but they are currently missing the recall primaries. The listing of elections is based off the GAB.wi.gov/elections-voting/results pages.

2001 2 (Spring Primary & Election)
2002 4 (Spring Primary & Election, Fall Primary & Election)
2003 2 (Spring Primary & Election)
2004 4 (Spring Primary & Election, Fall Primary & Election)
2005 2 (Spring Primary & Election, Special Primary (Dec 13 – AD33))
2006 6 (Spring Primary & Election, Fall Primary & Election, Special Election (Jan 10 – AD33))
2007 2 (Spring Primary & Election)
2008 4 (Spring Primary & Election, Fall Primary & Election)
2009 2 (Spring Primary & Election)
2010 4 (Spring Primary & Election, Fall Primary & Election)
2011 7 (Spring Primary & Election)

Special Primary (April 5 – AD60,83,94) (July 12-AD48) & Election (May 3 – AD60,83,94) (Aug 9-AD48)

Recall Primary (July 12 – SD2,8,10,14,18,32), (Aug 16 – SD12,20),

Recall Elections (July 19 – SD30), (Aug 9 – SD2,8,10,14,18,32), (Aug 16 – SD12,20),

Special Primary (Oct 11 – AD95) & Election (Nov 16 – AD95)

2012 8 (Spring Primary & Election, Recall Primary & Election)

Fall Primary & Election, Special Primary (Nov 6 – SD33) & Election (Dec 4 – SD33)

2013 4+ (Spring Primary & Election

Special Primary (Feb 19-AD98), (Oct 22 – AD 69) & Election (Apr 2-AD98), (Nov 19 – AD69))

August 22, 2013

Wisconsin State Senate Safe Seats

Filed under: Statistics — randallmelchert @ 8:38 pm

Who has the safest seats in the Senate (based on presidential results)? Crunching a modified PVI (based solely on 2012 which was the first post-redistricting race with a statewide total) there are two seats that are “less than safe.”

SD PVI Senator
6 D+35 Nikiya Harris (D)
4 D+33 Lena Taylor (D)
26 D+27 Fred Risser (D)
16 D+18 Mark F. Miller (D)
3 D+16 Tim Carpenter (D)
22 D+14 Robert Wirch (D)
27 D+9 Jon Erpenbach (D)
15 D+9 Tim Cullen (D)
7 D+7 Chris Larson (D)
32 D+5 Jennifer Shilling (D)
17 D+4 Dale Schultz (R)
25 D+3 Robert Jauch (D)
31 D+2 Kathleen Vinehout (D)
24 R+1 Julie Lassa (D)
30 R+1 Dave Hansen (D)
19 R+4 Mike Ellis (R)
18 R+4 Rick Gudex (R)
14 R+5 Luther Olsen (R)
23 R+5 Terry Moulton (R)
1 R+6 Frank Lasee (R)
29 R+6 Jerry Petrowski (R)
10 R+7 Sheila Harsdorf (R)
2 R+7 Robert Cowles (R)
12 R+7 Tom Tiffany (R)
9 R+7 Joe Leibham (R)
21 R+9 John Lehman (D)
13 R+10 Scott L. Fitzgerald (R)
5 R+10 Leah Vukmir (R)
11 R+10 Neal Kedzie (R)
8 R+13 Alberta Darling (R)
28 R+15 Mary Lazich (R)
33 R+20 Paul Farrow (R)
20 R+22 Glenn Grothman (R)
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