Michael Horne
Plenty of Horne

Moore Backs Barrett, Brostoff Slams Abele

And One Wisconsin Now celebrates 10 years of bashing Republicans.

By - Feb 24th, 2016 04:30 pm
Rep. Gwen Moore gave her mayoral endorsement to the candidacy of Tom Barrett. Photo by Michael Horne.

Rep. Gwen Moore gave her mayoral endorsement to the candidacy of Tom Barrett. Photo by Michael Horne.

Rep. Gwen Moore gave her mayoral endorsement to the candidacy of Tom Barrett, the man who preceded her as member of congress for the 4th District of Wisconsin. She made her remarks Monday, February 22nd at a sidewalk press conference outside the never-opened Milwaukee Beer Museum, 722 S. 5th St. Moore noted Barrett’s congressional past, and said she continues to work with him in his mayoral present. Barrett has “worked feverishly to make Milwaukee a place to admire,” she said, adding that Barrett “relentlessly pursues federal dollars for Milwaukee.”

She said that the feds have a category for “Manufacturing Hubs,” with “specially designated funds” for qualifying cities. Thanks to Barrett, she said, the City of Milwaukee qualified for the funding.

She also credited Barrett with his administrative acumen, saying he is a “mayor who has made accomplishments despite a recalcitrant governor who has put any possible roadblocks in his way.”

The reference was to Scott Walker, who turned down $800 million in passenger rail funding and “turned down hundreds of jobs for political purposes.” And, “I won’t even get started on Talgo,” she said, referring to the Spanish train company that was to have had a permanent presence in Milwaukee.

As a further sign of Barrett’s political clout, Milwaukee was one of 20 cities to take President Obama‘s Health Care Challenge. Milwaukee placed first in the number of new health insurance sign ups, winning the city an anticipated visit by the president.

“Will this visit take place before the election,” I asked?

“I hope so,” said Barrett.

One Wisconsin Now Celebrates 10 Years

After the sidewalk press conference, Barrett and Moore paid a visit to La Perla restaurant, 734 S. 5th St. The restaurant was the site of the 10th Anniversary celebration for One Wisconsin Now, a liberal advocacy group based in Madison.

Scot Ross, the OWN Executive Director since 2007, is known for the steady stream of press releases his office issues seemingly within minutes of the news of any legislative or executive action on the state level.

OWN has been described by Bloomberg News as “the group that is dogging Scott Walker’s every move.” OWN has compiled the “Scott Walker Files: An Archive of Gov. Scott Walker’s Cronyism, Corruption and Incompetence.”

I asked Ross how he manages to keep up with his steady stream of communications, especially in a legislative atmopshere where momentous votes are taken on very little notice. He deferred to his Deputy Director, Mike Browne. Browne’s mellow “Yang” tends to balance Ross’s “raging Yin,” he said.

Among attendees at this event was Johnny Thomas, who faces incumbent Martin Matson in a race to be the city’s comptroller. Thomas has a e-mail address that begins with “Alpha 1.” What’s that all about? “That was my handle in the military,” he said. Thomas posed for a picture with Moore. Judicial candidate Jean Kies was there with her husband Lew Wasserman, as was Rep. Jonathan Brostoff. Brostoff’s wife and mother just got back from a trip to Israel, he said. So what did he do while enjoying his bachelorhood for a couple of days? The usual — Brostoff knocked on doors supporting Chris Larson for County Executive. Of course, if Larson wins, this would open up a seat in the State Senate, and Brostoff would be considered a likely candidate to replace him. Brostoff was an aide to Larson beginning back when Larson was a county supervisor.

Here is Brostoff’s Facebook take on the debate earlier that day between Larson and Abele:

I’m at the CEX debate and Abele was just asked about what he has and will do about African American issues in Milwaukee and he started talking about how he’s made our jails and house of corrections better.

He mentioned a few other things but when that’s your go to response… I mean wow. It’s like white privilege on steroids, and those steroids are on performing enhancing drugs and working overtime.

Also at the event for Ross was Nick Anton, owner of La Perla. Anton said when he opened the restaurant 20 years ago, he told people that “the neighborhood is on the way up.” And then the neighborhood kind of stagnated. Now it’s really on the way up, as recent developments have proven. “So, we’ve been lying for 20 years,” he joked.

Jackie Boynton was among the supporters who came to the event, as did Brennan Dineen Balestrieri. Stephanie Bloomingdale, the Secretary of the state AFL-CIO was at the event, and made a brief speech in her capacity as Vice Presdident of OWN. Analiese Eicher of OWN thanked the audience for their support and asked for more.

Finally an old familiar face made an appearance to introduce Moore. It was former Wisconsin Attorney General Peg Lautenschlager, who has not been seen in campaign circles in these parts for some time.

Photos from the Event

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