GOP candidates talk tough on crime; push for 2024 Republican Convention

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GOP candidates talk tough on crime

Victor Prado, with MKE Downtown, clears debris near the corner of North Water Street and East Juneau Avenue in Milwaukee on Saturday, May 14, 2022 where seventeen people, ranging in age from 15 to 47, were shot and injured late Friday in Milwaukee's downtown bar district after the Milwaukee Bucks playoff game.
Victor Prado, with MKE Downtown, clears debris near the corner of North Water Street and East Juneau Avenue in Milwaukee on Saturday, May 14, 2022 where seventeen people, ranging in age from 15 to 47, were shot and injured late Friday in Milwaukee's downtown bar district after the Milwaukee Bucks playoff game.

The gun violence that rocked Milwaukee Friday night — with 21 people wounded in three shootings — roared right into the Republican race for governor.

Top contenders Tim Michels, Rebecca Kleefisch and Kevin Nicholson weighed in on the violence with tough talk and tough policies.

Michels announced if he wins the race he will fire Milwaukee County District Attorney John Chisholm, hire more prosecutors, increase penalties for felons caught with guns and build a $350 million prison.

Kleefisch held a news conference outside Fiserv Forum to tout plans she released months ago to fire Chisholm, hire 1,000 cops around the state and tap the State Patrol to help local law enforcement.

Nicholson blamed crime in Milwaukee on Gov. Tony Evers, Chisholm and Attorney General Josh Kaul. All three are Democrats.

You can read the report by Patrick Marley and Mary Spicuzza here.

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Push for 2024 Republican Convention

The Milwaukee skyline.
The Milwaukee skyline.

Behind the scenes, there's a lot going on with Milwaukee's push to land the 2024 Republican Convention.

Milwaukee and Nashville are the two finalists.

Common Council members are being briefed on a proposed agreement that could pave the way for the GOP to come here in 2024, four years after Democrats staged a pared-down convention because of the pandemic.

The same process is going on in Nashville but Milwaukee is believed to be further along.

Peggy Williams-Smith, president and chief executive of VISIT Milwaukee, said before it makes its selection, the Republican National Committee wants "everything ready to go. The hotel package. The venue package. An agreement with the city."

You can read the article here.

Ron Johnson's vulnerabilities

Craig Gilbert has an interesting take on Republican U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson, who is running for a third term.

Diving deep into poll numbers, Gilbert writes that Johnson "faces a Wisconsin electorate that is more negative toward him — and more polarized over him — than ever.

"He has lost significant ground in the past few years with key voting groups such as women, moderates, independents and suburbanites, including voters in the once lopsided GOP stronghold of the 'WOW counties' outside Milwaukee.

"And the dividing lines over Johnson have deepened since he was last on the ballot in 2016.

"The gap between how Republicans and Democrats view him was large then, but it’s even larger now. So is the gap between how conservatives and liberals view him.

"The senator’s name recognition has grown to its highest levels. But the electorate has hardened around him. There are far fewer voters than in the past who are 'undecided' about Johnson, which could make it harder for him to improve his image over the course of this campaign."

You can read this fascinating article here.

Welcome to Wisconsin

Jennifer Mnookin is set to become the next chancellor of UW-Madison on Aug. 4.
Jennifer Mnookin is set to become the next chancellor of UW-Madison on Aug. 4.

UCLA law dean Jennifer Mnookin was named Monday as the next UW-Madison chancellor.

Her political honeymoon with Republicans in the Legislature didn't even last a day.

Reporter Kelly Meyerhofer writes that some Republicans, including Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, of Rochester, have painted Mnookin as a leftist “woke radical” who has donated to Democratic politicians and supports critical race theory.

In Meyerhofer's follow up piece, Mnookin told reporters Tuesday that she is excited to meet people, both on campus and in the Capitol, over beer or cheese curds and work to find common ground about how to move Wisconsin forward.

Keeping up on the U.S. Senate race

For the latest tidbits on the U.S. Senate race, you can find updates here.

Some recent items include Milwaukee philanthropist Sheldon Lubar giving an endorsement to Steven Olikara, details on Elizabeth Warren's headlining upcoming fundraisers for Mandela Barnes and Sarah Godlewski releasing a plan to address the mental health crisis.

Around the horn

Judge throws out a $1.4 million defamation jury verdict against Milwaukee Ald. Bob Bauman.

Two legitimate Wisconsin presidential electors sue slate of Trump-backed fake electors. Here is how they want a judge to act.

A former Trump campaign aide who helped engineer fake elector scheme joins Tim Ramthun's campaign for governor.

Parole rescinded for man who killed wife in front of children after Gov. Tony Evers intervenes.

He's been the voice of Wisconsin's GOP for years. How does Robin Vos feel now that he's a target in his own party?

Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Alex Lasry files for extension on statement of economic interests until after Aug. 9 primary.

Tweet of the week

Former Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch had quite the thread lambasting the appointment of Jennifer Mnookin as UW-Madison chancellor.

Here's how it began: "The Board of Regents' decision to hire a woke radical like Dr. Mnookin is infuriating. Our universities need to focus on building a strong economy and workforce — not force-feeding liberal ideology to Wisconsin students."

This article originally appeared on Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: GOP candidates talk tough on crime; push for 2024 Republican Convention