NEWS & DOCUMENTARIES | HERE AND NOW TRANSCRIPT

Frederica Freyberg:

Senator Fitzgerald says it's likely the Republicans will run fake Democrats to create primaries in the senate recall elections, thus moving them to run at the same time as the general gubernatorial election with Scott Walker on the ticket. We move now to the other side of the aisle. For that we travel to Milwaukee. That's where Democratic senator Lena Taylor is tonight. Thanks very much for joining us.

Lena Taylor:

It's a pleasure to be with you. Thank you for having me.

Frederica Freyberg:

Senator, first, what is your reaction to Senator Pam Galloway announcing her resignation today?

Lena Taylor:

I have to say that my prayers go with Senator Galloway in regards to the health issues that were mentioned for she and her family. I hope that she will enjoy her time back into the private sector. It is a lot of work to do what we do. I wish that we would have had it a few months or weeks or days earlier so that now this co-leadership position that the senate has been put in, that we would have had that a little sooner. Maybe we would have been able to get some things done like jobs for Wisconsinites.

Frederica Freyberg:

What are the implications in your view for the recall election in that district and then who eventually holds the senate?

Lena Taylor:

Well, I think that the candidate that has already come out in that race, Donna Seidel, Representative Donna Seidel, is going to be an excellent candidate in that particular area in that particular district. And so I don't know that the senator's retirement will really change that. I think neither will it change the fact that the Republicans are willing to lie and falsify documents by having individuals pretend that they're Democrats and then to run individuals that they know are Republicans and then to run. So that may not change that. I think in the end we only need one seat in order to be not in a co-leadership position anymore at 16/16, but to literally be in the majority. And I think that that's going to happen in one of four races. I think it's primed to happen.

Frederica Freyberg:

How would you summarize this legislative session from its very beginning to its end?

Lena Taylor:

Historic, sad and unproductive when it comes to jobs for Wisconsinites. And I say historic because we had horrible numbers in regards to job loss. We had horrible numbers in regards to leading now in cuts in education, whether it be K-12 or whether it be our colleges or our tech colleges. Across the board, we've changed Wisconsin's way. And I think the saddest piece for me was my colleagues who were willing to sign pledges to disregard Wisconsinites' voices and closing down the Capitol and committees in order for Wisconsinites to be heard. That I think is what I see, the radical, overreaching behavior of the Republicans, is what I see that happened this past session. And that is historical in a negative way, to be very candid.

Frederica Freyberg:

In fact, we asked Senator Fitzgerald about overreach, and he said it was not as much that as it was 'clawing back' from the years of Democrats being in power. But I wanted to just ask you about these job loss numbers. This week again headlines are reading that Wisconsin led the nation in job loss from January of last year to January of this year. How do you explain those job losses?

Lena Taylor:

I think that those individuals who were in control who did the legislation where they told you that they were having a jobs session, one, two job sessions and literally almost three job sessions and no jobs for Wisconsinites. And still we led the nation. I think it tells you that they've been less than honest, at the very least, with Wisconsinites. And I'm hoping that the people will see that when they go to the polls, that they know that they've told them one thing and that they've done another. And those numbers are real. It's sad. It's sad that we went session after session, did things like making criminal for doctors potentially to be charged with felonies. We made, you know, issues in regards to wolf hunting and the list goes on. Anything and everything other than basic job creation. For example, small businesses we know create jobs. We could have did the Venture Capital Bill. The governor failed miserably with that issue as well as the mining issue. Failed miserably.

Frederica Freyberg:

We need to leave it there. I know I asked you that open-ended question, but thank you very much for your time.

Lena Taylor:

Thank you.

Here and Now
 

Senator Taylor weighs in on past session
Friday, March 16, 2012

Watch video

Milwaukee Democrat Sen. Lena Taylor weighs in on the legislative session's end and more from another eventful week in Wisconsin politics.


Donate to WPT
PBS Kids Go!




PARTNERS

PBS Wisconsin Public Radio UW Extension Educational Communications Boards
Portal Wisconsin Wisconsin Media Lab Next Avenue