When debating Gov. Scott Walker's decision to not call special elections to fill two vacancies in the Wisconsin Legislature, state political figures and commentators have argued over the move's implications elections law, public spending and democracy itself. But what about precedent?
An investigation of 105 special elections in Wisconsin since 1971, as well as 45 legislative vacancies not filled through special elections over the same time period, indicates that it's pretty normal for governors to call them swiftly and without much fuss. But Gov. Scott Walker is challenging that norm with a recent decision.
As Wisconsinites push through a hard flu season, public-health officials are following a distinct mix of influenza strains and worrying about the effectiveness of this year's vaccines, but they're also thinking a lot about an intricate disease-tracking network that's been built up over time.
To understand why moving a couple of DMV locations in Madison would cause outcry, it helps to understand some of the finer points of getting around in Wisconsin's capital and second-most populous city.
Northern Wisconsin is a frigid place come winter. But as the state has warmed, the certainty of snow gradually vanished, leaving the traditional winter dogsledding races frequently canceled for lack of good powder.
The number of babies born in a given year can have deep social and economic implications, as both younger and older adults may know from their experiences in crowded schools, competitive job markets, and, for the latter, retirement destinations.