- Associated Press - Wednesday, September 3, 2014
Johnson: Beheading video calls for intervention

PLYMOUTH, Minn. (AP) - Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson says the Islamic State extremists reported to have beheaded a second American journalist are evil barbarians who must be defeated.

The Islamic State group released a video Tuesday that appears to show the beheading of Steven Sotloff. If confirmed, it would be the second such video in two weeks after the killing of journalist James Foley.

Johnson says Tuesday’s video highlights the need for the U.S. to intervene in the Middle East to stamp out the terrorist group. Johnson spoke from Plymouth, Minnesota, where he is helping fellow Republican and Senate candidate Mike McFadden campaign against Democratic Sen. Al Franken.

McFadden says the U.S. should continue targeted bombings in Iraq and possibly Syria, but wouldn’t support a boots-on-the-ground invasion. Johnson didn’t specify the intervention he supports.


Group: Happ went easy on alleged child molester

MADISON, Wis. (AP) - A conservative group on Tuesday accused Democratic Attorney General Susan Happ of letting an alleged child molester off easy because he bought her house a year before he was charged.

Happ has served as district attorney in Jefferson County since 2008. Media Trackers released a statement saying it had uncovered court and land purchase documents that show Daniel J. Reynolds entered into a three-year contract to purchase Happ and her husband’s home for $180,000 in December 2009. The deal called for Reynolds to make $1,500 monthly payments and pay for the entire house by December 2012. Land records show the deed moved to Reynolds in May 2012.

In the fall of 2011 the Jefferson Police Department began investigating whether Reynolds had sexually assaulted a young girl. Court records indicate Happ’s office opened a case on him sometime in 2012 and ended up charging him with two felony counts of sexual assault of a child in May 2013. This past March, Happ’s office agreed to a deferred prosecution deal with Reynolds. The agreement allows him to avoid a conviction if he submits to monitoring and evaluations, according to Reynolds’ defense attorney.

“This case raises questions about Susan Happ’s commitment to protecting Wisconsin’s most vulnerable,” Brian Sikma, Media Trackers’ communications director, said in the statement.

Happ’s opponent in the Nov. 4 election is Brad Schimel, Waukesha County’s Republican district attorney. A Marquette University Law School poll released last week shows Happ in the lead, with 40 percent of registered voters surveyed saying they support her compared with 33 percent backing Schimel. His campaign manager, Johnny Koremenos, accused Happ Tuesday of cutting a deal with a child molester with financial ties to her family.

“The more we know about Susan Happ, the worse it gets for her,” Koremenos said in an email.

Happ’s campaign manager, Josh Lease, said in an email that Happ did nothing wrong.


Officials: 1 dead, 14 hurt in Wisconsin bus crash

PULASKI, Wis. (AP) - Authorities say a car collided with a school bus carrying high school athletes near Pulaski, killing a passenger in the car and injuring 14 people.

Brown County officials said the car hit the back of the bus Tuesday night while the bus tried to cross the highway. The bus was carrying volleyball teams from Pulaski High School.

Sheriff’s Lt. Kevin Pawlak tells Press-Gazette Media that 13 students were injured. He says five were taken to a hospital by ambulance and the rest were driven by parents.

Suamico Fire Chief Douglas Doefer tells the newspaper the car driver had life-threatening injuries. Officials haven’t released the names of those involved. The conditions of the students were not immediately available.

School officials say there will be counseling available.


Walker won’t make another job-creation promise

MADISON, Wis. (AP) - Gov. Scott Walker said Tuesday he won’t make another job-creation promise like he did four years ago, a pledge he’s all but certain not to fulfill by the end of his term in December.

Walker said his economic development plan to be unveiled in coming weeks will be a detailed proposal about how to grow quality jobs, but it won’t include a specific promise of how many jobs would be created.

“It’s not only about the number of jobs, it’s about the quality of jobs,” Walker said when asked whether he would be making a new pledge. He spoke after an appearance at Forte Research Systems in Madison, a clinical research software developer that plans to add 55 jobs over the next three years.

Walker’s central campaign promise during his 2010 run for governor was that the state would add 250,000 private sector jobs during his first term. Through July, about 103,000 jobs have been added.

Walker’s Democratic opponent for re-election, former state Commerce Department secretary and Trek Bicycles executive Mary Burke, has hammered Walker for not living up to the jobs promise. Her economic development plan, unveiled in May, does not include a specific job-creation number. Burke instead has said her goal is to produce a thriving economy that puts Wisconsin in the top 10 nationwide.

Walker should be judged on how well Wisconsin’s economy is performing compared with other states, Burke said in a statement.

“He had four years to get the job done,” Burke said. “He told us he should be held accountable. Well, he failed, and I’m confident that on Election Day voters will hold him accountable and vote for a new direction.”

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