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News from around Wisconsin at 5:28 a.m. CDT
Thursday, April 24, 2014
Question of the Day
MADISON, Wis. (AP) - A Republican running to unseat Democratic U.S. Rep. Ron Kind says he is backing out of the race so voters can line up behind a single challenger.
Chris Anderson, a former aide to U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson, announced Wednesday he would no longer run for western Wisconsin’s 3rd Congressional District. Anderson says he will endorse Republican Tony Kurtz in the race because Kurtz supports conservative ideas.
Kurtz says he has hired Anderson to work as finance director for his campaign.
Three Republicans remain in the race for the seat Kind has occupied since 1997. Kind’s office didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.
MILWAUKEE (AP) - U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin on Wednesday encouraged fellow Democrats to speak out about the successes of the new federal health care law, which Republicans have ridiculed on the campaign trail as an example of government overreach.
Baldwin acknowledged that the rollout of the federal healthcare.gov website was botched. But now that 8 million Americans have signed up, she said it’s time for Democrats to focus on how the law has made things better - for example, by not allowing insurance companies to deny coverage based on pre-existing conditions.
“There are accomplishments … that we should be proud of, that we should embrace and make sure that people truly understand them,” she said.
Plenty of Americans were frustrated by flaws in the signup process, she added, but “I’ve never run across a person who said we should do away with insurance reforms.”
Health care reform is likely to be a major issue in the November midterm elections. Baldwin predicted that Republicans would campaign on a futile pledge to repeal or defund the law, and she said she was confident Democrats will retain Senate control after the election.
Baldwin, 52, also expressed her support for raising the minimum wage. She said the increase should also be tied to the rate of inflation so Congress doesn’t have to revisit the same political battle every 10 years.
Baldwin said she was concerned about the economy’s fragile recovery. She said there are 2.7 job seekers for every open job, which was keeping hardworking Americans from providing for the families. She said she was also concerned that America’s middle class, once the envy of the world, has been surpassed by that of other industrialized countries.
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