Rob Mentzer

Recent Articles

Republicans Bar Rep. Janel Brandtjen From Private Meetings

Republicans Bar Rep. Janel Brandtjen From Private Meetings

Caucus loses trust in Elections Committee chair who denied 2020 election results, endorsed Vos’ challenger

Van Orden Defeats Pfaff in Western Wisconsin Congressional District

Van Orden Defeats Pfaff in Western Wisconsin Congressional District

AP calls race, with Republican at 52% of vote and 95% of ballots counted.

Is Democracy Actually On the Ballot?

Is Democracy Actually On the Ballot?

Republicans have promised numerous changes to how elections are run, while Michels claims they'll never lose another election if he wins.

DeSantis Backs Michels, Says State Can Be Like Florida

DeSantis Backs Michels, Says State Can Be Like Florida

‘Everything we've done in Florida, you will be able to do,' he declares at Green Bay rally.

Tiffany, Opponent Debate Crime, Inflation

Tiffany, Opponent Debate Crime, Inflation

‘Democrat-run cities’ like Milwaukee blasted by Republican in northern Wisconsin congressional district.

Tiffany, Fitzgerald Push FBI On Search For Trump Documents

Tiffany, Fitzgerald Push FBI On Search For Trump Documents

Wisconsin congressman join 16 Judiciary Committee members to support probe of FBI.

Sikh Temple Members Recall 2012 Shooting

Sikh Temple Members Recall 2012 Shooting

Decade since horrific event in Oak Creeks has seen rise in mass shootings.

Digital Records At Issue In Suit Against Natural Resources Board Member

Digital Records At Issue In Suit Against Natural Resources Board Member

Fred Prehn, who refused to step down from board, will provide cell phone records under court order.

Evers $10 Million Fundraising Signals Expensive Campaign

Evers $10 Million Fundraising Signals Expensive Campaign

Twice as much as Walker raised at this point in governor’s race. Money flowing into Wisconsin.

Peregrine Falcon Program Helps Raptors Take Flight

Peregrine Falcon Program Helps Raptors Take Flight

Researcher works with utilities, creating nesting boxes atop Wisconsin power plants.

Bodies of Two Drowned Men Who Tried to Rescue Boy Found

Bodies of Two Drowned Men Who Tried to Rescue Boy Found

Boy, 10, his father and another adult male all swept away and died in Monday’s rainstorm.

Body of Drowned Boy, Aged 10, Found

Body of Drowned Boy, Aged 10, Found

Authorities still searching for 2 men who tried to save child swept away in rainstorm’s high waters.

Students Settle Case From 2014 Against UWM

Students Settle Case From 2014 Against UWM

In dispute over who was real student government president, UWM pays 'six figure settlement,' litigants say.

Lincoln Hills ‘Staffing Crisis’ Causing Confinement, Deteriorating Behaviors

Lincoln Hills ‘Staffing Crisis’ Causing Confinement, Deteriorating Behaviors

New report finds worsening attitudes at troubled facility.

Kaul Announces State Sex Assault Kits Tracking System

Kaul Announces State Sex Assault Kits Tracking System

Goal tp 'empower’ assault survivors, allow them to track progress on investigations.

Court Says Hospitals Can’t Be Forced To Treat COVID-19 With Ivermectin

Court Says Hospitals Can’t Be Forced To Treat COVID-19 With Ivermectin

Decision stems from lawsuit filed by man that demanded ivermectin treatment for family member.

State Democrats Push Gun Restrictions After Texas Shootings

State Democrats Push Gun Restrictions After Texas Shootings

Kaul calls for law requiring background checks and preventing sale of 'ghost guns.'

Wisconsin Justice Blasts ‘Dangerous Loophole’ for Concealed Carry

Wisconsin Justice Blasts ‘Dangerous Loophole’ for Concealed Carry

Current law allows some with history of domestic violence to carry a concealed weapon.

State’s Unemployment at Historic Low

State’s Unemployment at Historic Low

Inflation eating away at wage increases.

Plover Union Organizer Fired By Starbucks

Plover Union Organizer Fired By Starbucks

Company faces labor complaints, fired organizer days after workers voted for union at Starbucks in central Wisconsin.

Can Lawsuits Change USPS Mail Vehicle Plans?

Can Lawsuits Change USPS Mail Vehicle Plans?

Environmentalists, unions, 15 states sue USPS over non-union made, gas powered truck contract.

Milwaukee Leaders Address Rise in Violence

Milwaukee Leaders Address Rise in Violence

MU poll found nearly 40% of Milwaukeeans worry about safety.

West Allis Man Charged With Hate Crime

West Allis Man Charged With Hate Crime

Man used racial slurs and vandalism to intimidate neighbors.

Wisconsin Cities, Airports End Mask Orders

Wisconsin Cities, Airports End Mask Orders

In response to federal court’s order, masks now optional at the airport.

Report Details Opioid Addiction Solutions

Report Details Opioid Addiction Solutions

After listening sessions, WI Department of Health Services recommends expanded treatment and attention to root causes.

Evers Announces $5 Million Mental Health Funding

Evers Announces $5 Million Mental Health Funding

Grants from federal ARPA money will expand mental health services and telemedicine.

Can Ron Johnson Win Reelection?

Can Ron Johnson Win Reelection?

His unfavorability ratings are high, but the politics of 2022 may be on his side.

Waukesha Parade Murders Trial Will Test Jury For Bias

Waukesha Parade Murders Trial Will Test Jury For Bias

Defense seeks change of venue, saying media coverage would bias a local jury.

Godlewski Calls On State to Divest Russian Assets

Godlewski Calls On State to Divest Russian Assets

Wisconsin treasurer pushes state investment board to sell $90 million in Russian investments.

Wisconsin Traffic Deaths Rising

Wisconsin Traffic Deaths Rising

Reckless driving isn't just a problem in Milwaukee.

Ron Johnson Courts City’s Hispanic Voters

Ron Johnson Courts City’s Hispanic Voters

National poll shows Hispanics evenly split. Republicans open Hispanic center in Milwaukee.

Wausau Wells Have Elevated PFAS Levels

Wausau Wells Have Elevated PFAS Levels

All six city wells exceed the proposed state standards.

Johnson Blasted For Stance on Lost Jobs

Johnson Blasted For Stance on Lost Jobs

Oshkosh Defense will build US Postal Service vehicles in South Carolina, not Wisconsin.

State Still Has $1.8 Billion In Pandemic Funds

State Still Has $1.8 Billion In Pandemic Funds

Evers update shows 60% of $4.6 billion federal relief funding has been spent or allocated.

Private Equity Firms Want To Buy Kohl’s

Private Equity Firms Want To Buy Kohl’s

Analysts say it could spell disaster for metro area company.

Johnson Doubles Down Against Child Care Aid

Johnson Doubles Down Against Child Care Aid

Taking care of children isn't 'society's responsibility,’ Senator insists.

Wisconsin Sees Record COVID-19 Cases

Wisconsin Sees Record COVID-19 Cases

State health officials report highest ever seven-day-average of cases

Six Wisconsinites Charged in Capitol Insurrection

Six Wisconsinites Charged in Capitol Insurrection

One West Allis man was sentenced to 30 days in jail.

Rural Hospitals Lose Few Workers Due to Vaccine Mandates

Rural Hospitals Lose Few Workers Due to Vaccine Mandates

Loss of 20% expected, but actual figure about 2%, survey of state hospitals finds.

Johnson Says Overwhelmed Hospitals Not a ‘Massive Crisis’

Johnson Says Overwhelmed Hospitals Not a ‘Massive Crisis’

The senator also criticized the safety and effectiveness of the vaccines.

Judge Won’t Allow Evidence of Rittenhouse’s Proud Boys Connection

Judge Won’t Allow Evidence of Rittenhouse’s Proud Boys Connection

Kyle Rittenhouse charged with fatally shooting two men during Kenosha protests.

Key Takeaways From 2020 Census Data

Key Takeaways From 2020 Census Data

Dane County grew while Milwaukee shrank.

Evers Vetoes Bill to Help Paper Mills

Evers Vetoes Bill to Help Paper Mills

A 'gut punch,' Republican says. Using federal pandemic aid could be prohibited, Evers says.

Plan Would Permit Sports Betting

Plan Would Permit Sports Betting

At Oneida casino and properties in state. But may not boost economy much.

Johnson, GOP Congressmen Want Answers on Unemployment Fraud

Johnson, GOP Congressmen Want Answers on Unemployment Fraud

Evers asked to respond to report that states vulnerable to ‘massive’ Nigerian fraud scheme.

Court Tosses Law Allowing Blood Draws From Unconscious Drunk Driver Suspects

Court Tosses Law Allowing Blood Draws From Unconscious Drunk Driver Suspects

WI Supreme Court rules law deeming drivers consent to these searches is unconstitutional.

Election Conspiracy Promoter Hosting Trump Via Livestream

Election Conspiracy Promoter Hosting Trump Via Livestream

The former president will speak virtually at Wisconsin event on Saturday.

Legislator Compares Children’s Museum to Nazis

Legislator Compares Children’s Museum to Nazis

Republican attacks Central Wisconsin Children’s Museum's mask policy, citing the Gestapo.

Northwoods Tourism Spots Expect Busy Summer

Northwoods Tourism Spots Expect Busy Summer

Reservations up, the phones are “constantly ringing."

Children’s Vaccinations Vary By County

Children’s Vaccinations Vary By County

In Dane County, 29% of those aged 12 to 15 have had first dose, in Clark County just 1%.

Eligibility Expanded for Federal Unemployment Assistance

Eligibility Expanded for Federal Unemployment Assistance

Biden administration releases new guidelines making previously denied applicants eligible for up to 79 weeks of unemployment.

School Districts End Mask Requirement

School Districts End Mask Requirement

Rural and suburban school districts across state relent, often pressured by parents.

Ron Johnson Favors “Limited” COVID-19 Vaccination

Ron Johnson Favors “Limited” COVID-19 Vaccination

"I see no reason to be pushing vaccines on people," the senator said.

New Therapy Used at Lincoln Hills

New Therapy Used at Lincoln Hills

Officials cite progress at youth prison, but reformers say it should be closed.

Harley-Davidson Faces 56% EU Tariff

Harley-Davidson Faces 56% EU Tariff

Company appealing decision. Its CEO warns of 'escalating trade war.'

Utility Shut Off Moratorium Ends Today

Utility Shut Off Moratorium Ends Today

Thousands of state residents have utility bills that are coming due.

Most Small Businesses Survived Pandemic

Most Small Businesses Survived Pandemic

Surveys of state businesses show fewer layoffs, closures than anticipated.

State Demands Return of Some Unemployment Benefits

State Demands Return of Some Unemployment Benefits

Letters cite “overpayment” by state. One Appleton family must pay pack $13,000.

Small Businesses Welcome Federal Stimulus

Small Businesses Welcome Federal Stimulus

Business owners discuss revenue loss, rising healthcare costs and changes that will outlast the pandemic.

Tiffany Advised Daughters Against Getting Vaccine

Tiffany Advised Daughters Against Getting Vaccine

Northern Wisconsin congressman makes false claims, contradicts public health guidance.

State Appeals Court Races Getting More Partisan

State Appeals Court Races Getting More Partisan

With big donations from Uihlein, Menard, a 9-1 advantage for GOP-backed candidate.

State Leads Nation Dispensing Vaccines

State Leads Nation Dispensing Vaccines

Wisconsin has used 88% of its vaccine allotment, top rate of any state in the nation.

Life as a COVID-19 ‘Long-Hauler’

Life as a COVID-19 ‘Long-Hauler’

Paul Mathis had COVID-19 in October, but still hasn't completely lost his symptoms.

Evers Prioritizing School Funding, Rural Broadband in Budget

Evers Prioritizing School Funding, Rural Broadband in Budget

Governor may veto budget if GOP-controlled Legislature removes those items.

Ron Johnson Declines Vaccine

Ron Johnson Declines Vaccine

As polls show about 50% of GOP men will refuse vaccine, state’s Republican congressmen won’t speak out.

State Launching Vaccine Appointment Website

State Launching Vaccine Appointment Website

It launches in February. Anyone can sign up, those ineligible will go on wait list.

Bucks VP Alex Lasry Gets Vaccinated by “Pure Happenstance”

Bucks VP Alex Lasry Gets Vaccinated by “Pure Happenstance”

Lasry offered vaccine by wife's uncle when doses were close to expiring.

Wisconsin Delegation Votes Party Line on Impeachment

Wisconsin Delegation Votes Party Line on Impeachment

Republicans voted against impeachment, Democrats for it.

Gallagher Assails GOP Push to Nullify Election

Gallagher Assails GOP Push to Nullify Election

Wisconsin congressman calls it a 'dangerous idea' that would 'destroy the idea of American government.'

Wisconsin-Made App Helps You Recycle

Wisconsin-Made App Helps You Recycle

Smartphone app makes it easy to buy products that are recycled, and improve compositing.

State’s Outdoor Recreation a $7.8 Billion Industry

State’s Outdoor Recreation a $7.8 Billion Industry

State officials want to capitalize on pandemic-driven increases in outdoor recreation.

Johnson, Tiffany Join Trump’s Effort to Overturn Election

Johnson, Tiffany Join Trump’s Effort to Overturn Election

Rep. Tom Tiffany signs onto Texas lawsuit and Sen. Ron Johnson calls hearing on election "irregularities."

Wausau Hospital Sends COVID-19 Patients Home, Saving Space for Critically Ill

Wausau Hospital Sends COVID-19 Patients Home, Saving Space for Critically Ill

Aspirus Wausau is sending COVID-19 patients home to make room for sicker patients.

Trump Lawsuit Against TV Station Dismissed

Trump Lawsuit Against TV Station Dismissed

Campaign’s claim of defamation for ad run by Rhinelander TV station dismissed by federal court.

Biden Lead in State Helped by Key Counties

Biden Lead in State Helped by Key Counties

Biden wins 77% of Dane County; Trump margin in Ozaukee, Waukesha counties lower than in 2016.

Hospitalized or Quarantined Can Still Vote

Hospitalized or Quarantined Can Still Vote

Options include finding someone to deliver your ballot or using curbside voting.

Some Wisconsin Hospitals Close to Full Capacity

Some Wisconsin Hospitals Close to Full Capacity

Hospitalizations due to COVID-19 are at an all-time high across the state.

Could Hmong Voters Decide State Election?

Could Hmong Voters Decide State Election?

They’re the largest Asian American group in Wisconsin, with varied views.

“Think I’m Doing This for My Health?”

“Think I’m Doing This for My Health?”

Trump comes to Janesville. "We win Wisconsin, we win the whole ballgame."

Trump Will Rally In Janesville

Trump Will Rally In Janesville

Airport rally tonight in county where COVID-19 cases up 48% in last week.

Michigan Militia Has Ties to Wisconsin

Michigan Militia Has Ties to Wisconsin

Trained in Cambria and connected to Three Percenters group with Wisconsin members.

Trump Announces $13 Billion Farm Aid

Trump Announces $13 Billion Farm Aid

The president announced the new relief during rally in Wisconsin.

Jill Biden Hears From Moms in Green Bay

Jill Biden Hears From Moms in Green Bay

Virtual event focuses on challenges of virtual schooling.

Jacob Blake Speaks from Hospital Bed

Jacob Blake Speaks from Hospital Bed

“Nothing but pain,” but “stick together… Change your lives out there."

Activist Arrested in Kenosha Joins Curfew Lawsuit

Activist Arrested in Kenosha Joins Curfew Lawsuit

Lawsuit argues that curfew was only enforced against those protesting police brutality.

MU Poll Shows Biden Still Leads Trump

MU Poll Shows Biden Still Leads Trump

Up by 5 points in new poll. Two other polls showed similar lead.

Mask Violation Reporting Form Stirs Debate

Mask Violation Reporting Form Stirs Debate

State mask mandate not enforced by police, but some counties allow people to report on those violating it.

Most Rural Schools Plan In-Person Classes

Most Rural Schools Plan In-Person Classes

Many Districts Plan For Some Virtual School, Especially For Older Students

Pandemic May Decimate State Aid to Local Governments

Pandemic May Decimate State Aid to Local Governments

New report shows the state may have to cut revenue sent to local governments.

Pence Attacks Biden During Wisconsin Visit

Pence Attacks Biden During Wisconsin Visit

Biden campaign called it damage control for Trump's "historic failure of leadership."

Johnson Opposes More Economic Stimulus Funding

Johnson Opposes More Economic Stimulus Funding

Won’t back “even a dime more” until issues with past funding fixed, Republican Senator says.

Wisconsin To Have Nation’s COVID-19 Testing Center

Wisconsin To Have Nation’s COVID-19 Testing Center

Marshfield Clinic wins $22.5 million grant to do testing for multiple studies on virus by CDC.

State Sees Decline in Contested Local Elections

State Sees Decline in Contested Local Elections

Report also finds trends toward lower voter turnout and civic engagement.

61% of State Residents Support Protests

61% of State Residents Support Protests

And Biden now leads Trump by 8% in state, latest Marquette poll finds.

State’s DACA Recipients Vow to ‘Push On’

State’s DACA Recipients Vow to ‘Push On’

Saved by Supreme Court decision, some say they will fight for more immigration reform.

Wisconsin Police Union Supports Reforms

Wisconsin Police Union Supports Reforms

State’s largest police union supports chokehold ban, “bad cop” registry.

FPC Commissioner Blasts Tear Gas Use

FPC Commissioner Blasts Tear Gas Use

Police Chief Alfonso Morales says "the media" makes it seem like they used it more than they did.

Small Town Protests See ‘Thrilling’ Response

Small Town Protests See ‘Thrilling’ Response

"Everyone's coming together" at protests in Wausau, Sturgeon Bay and across the state.

Special Election Will Have In-Person Voting

Special Election Will Have In-Person Voting

Tuesday’s 7th District election in Northern Wisconsin will use many safety measures.

Wisconsin GOP Leaders Make No Election Changes in Special Session

Wisconsin GOP Leaders Make No Election Changes in Special Session

And appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court to block absentee balloting extension.

State Unemployment System Overwhelmed

State Unemployment System Overwhelmed

Callers can’t get through, 1.5 million calls last week to Department of Workforce Development.

State’s Election Clerks Prepare for COVID-19

State’s Election Clerks Prepare for COVID-19

Officials plan for worker shortages, potential polling place closures.

Wisconsin Ginseng Festival Cancelled

Wisconsin Ginseng Festival Cancelled

Coronavirus cited for cancelling Wausau event that attracts 2,000 international visitors.

Hmong Leaders Rally Against Deportation

Hmong Leaders Rally Against Deportation

Efforts by Trump administration to deport Hmongs to Laos condemned at rally in Wausau.

Two Bald Eagles Illegally Shot, Killed

Two Bald Eagles Illegally Shot, Killed

Federally protected species, but two slain in rural Wisconsin, investigation ongoing.

State’s Maple Syrup Industry At Risk

State’s Maple Syrup Industry At Risk

Climate change will cause loss of sugar maple trees, hurting $7 million syrup industry.

State’s Hmong Leaders Fear Deportation Plan

State’s Hmong Leaders Fear Deportation Plan

Trump Administration reportedly negotiating with Laos to allow deportations.

Confirmed Coronavirus Case in Wisconsin

Confirmed Coronavirus Case in Wisconsin

Wisconsin resident recently traveled to China, becomes 12th case in US.

Irrelevant If Trump Broke Law, Johnson Says

Irrelevant If Trump Broke Law, Johnson Says

Wisconsin’s Republican Senator is voting against impeachment of president.

Evers Assigns “Homework” to Legislators

Evers Assigns “Homework” to Legislators

Urges a legislative session long enough to pass bipartisan bills on water quality, homelessness, other issues.

Milwaukee Legislators Target Racial Inequality

Milwaukee Legislators Target Racial Inequality

'Disrupting Disparities’ proposals by African American lawmakers include criminal justice reforms.

Wausau May Legalize Snowball Fights

Wausau May Legalize Snowball Fights

National media mockery nudges city to end 58-year-old ordinance that bans throwing snowballs.

Which Republican Is More Trumpian?

Which Republican Is More Trumpian?

GOP candidates for state's 7th congressional district spar over who’s more like Trump.

Shootings by Police Up in 2019. Why?

Shootings by Police Up in 2019. Why?

16 fatal shootings by cops in Wisconsin. Experts point to key causes.

Grothman Backs Bill on Payday Lenders

Grothman Backs Bill on Payday Lenders

Wisconsin congressman says lenders' business model based on ‘ripping off’ customers.

‘Fair Maps’ Groups to Train Activists

‘Fair Maps’ Groups to Train Activists

Anti-gerrymandering summit will be held Saturday in central Wisconsin.

Polluted Wells Issue is Urgent, Legislator Says

Polluted Wells Issue is Urgent, Legislator Says

Rep. Shankland, member of Water Quality Task Force, says state funding needed to help families.

7th Congressional Special Election’s Dates Set

7th Congressional Special Election’s Dates Set

Evers sets February 18 primary, May 12 general election for district Sean Duffy has vacated.

18 School Boards Support Ending the Use of Native American Mascots

18 School Boards Support Ending the Use of Native American Mascots

Around 30 Wisconsin districts use Native American imagery, mascots or nicknames.

An Upcoming Battle in Trump Country

An Upcoming Battle in Trump Country

Duffy’s resignation in state’s northern congressional district gives Democrats hopes they can win it.

State’s Smaller Cities Embrace Bike Share

State’s Smaller Cities Embrace Bike Share

Wisconsin Rapids leads the way. City of 18,000 has logged 1,000 rides.

Lack of Freight Trains Damaging Roads?

Lack of Freight Trains Damaging Roads?

More freight trains could remove 350,000 trucks from northern Wisconsin roads, analysis finds.

Parties Eye Candidates For Duffy’s Seat

Parties Eye Candidates For Duffy’s Seat

Republican state Sen. Tom Tiffany and Democratic Rep. Nick Milroy consider run for Congress.

Blackwell Gives At Risk Youth A Better Future

Blackwell Gives At Risk Youth A Better Future

Blackwell was thrust into a political battle when Trump administration announced closure

Baldwin’s Bill Would Save Job Corps Centers

Baldwin’s Bill Would Save Job Corps Centers

Trump Administration wants to close or privatize 120 job training centers for disadvantaged youth.

State Lagged Nation in Income Growth

State Lagged Nation in Income Growth

Report ranks Wisconsin 33rd in average growth in personal incomes since Great Recession.