...while Wisconsin has a progressive streak of the sort that once put socialists in office, there is a history of conservatism and reactionary politics to the state that Joe McCarthy of all people called home. Wisconsin has a nativist culture, born of homogeneous white northern European immigration patterns, that is still fearful of outsiders, suspicious of change.
Second…More people live in the suburbs, or in its small, rural communities, creating a strong political base for Republicans.
Third, the economic landscape of Wisconsin has altered dramatically over the past several decades...Wisconsin has not fared as well as neighboring Minnesota, which has become a hub for bio-technology….
"A little fill here and there may seem to be nothing to become excited about. But one fill, though comparatively inconsequential, may lead to another, and another, and before long a great body may be eaten away until it may no longer exist. Our navigable waters are a precious natural heritage, once gone, they disappear forever," wrote the Wisconsin Supreme Court in its 1960 opinion resolving Hixon v. PSC and buttressing The Public Trust Doctrine, Article IX of the Wisconsin State Constitution.
The right, suburbanites say "No light rail for Milwaukee."
James Rowen's Bio
James Rowen, a writer and consultant, has worked for newspapers, and as the senior Mayoral staffer, in Madison and Milwaukee, WI. This blog began on 2/2/ 2007. Posts run also at various news sites, including The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's "Purple Wisconsin."