With signs saying “13 Million Jobs – No Going Back,” Democrats in Milwaukee held a press conference yesterday to welcome the Republican presidential candidates to their city for tonight’s Fox Business debate. And their message was clear: the Republican field offers out-of-touch, out-of-date policies that would bring Wisconsin and the nation backward and hurt the middle class. Speakers included Mayor Tom Barrett, Representatives Chris Taylor and Mandela Barnes, and Democratic Party of Wisconsin chair Martha Laning.
October marked the 68th consecutive month for private-sector job growth under President Obama following nearly 7 years of focusing on investing in education and job training, and in strengthening the middle class. In October alone, businesses added 268,000 jobs. The unemployment rate is now down to 5 percent, and wages grew at the fastest pace since 2009. In contrast, the Republicans would re-enact the disastrous policies that were in place back when we were losing 800,000 jobs a month.
See below for coverage of yesterday’s press conference. Democrats will cede no ground in opposing the Republican policies that would take our country backward — including today on the day of the Republican debate.
Journal Sentinel (Annysa Johnson)
On the eve of Tuesday’s GOP presidential debate in Milwaukee, Democrats gathered at Milwaukee’s City Hall on Monday to defend President Barack Obama’s presidency and offer a bleak vision of the country should it elect a Republican president in 2016.
Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, Wisconsin Democratic Party Chairman Martha Laning, state Rep. Mandela Barnes (D-Milwaukee) and others painted Republicans as those whose policies eliminate jobs and diminish middle-class workers, gut education and roll back the reproductive and workplace rights of women.
Under Obama, they said, the U.S. economy has added 13 million jobs, and the cost of health care has slowed dramatically. The nation is less reliant on foreign oil than it has been in three decades, they said, and the federal budget deficit has fallen.
The GOP candidates preparing to take the state at the Milwaukee Theatre on Tuesday “are promising the same failed policies that dragged our economy down the last time a Republican was in the White House,” Laning told the gathering of mostly media in the City Hall Rotunda.
“We cannot risk electing another Republican president. We have to ensure we invest in the future of our country and ensure that the middle class is strong,” she said.
Barrett said he would like to hear the GOP candidates address some of the issues critical to middle-class voters.
“We hear very little from Republicans other than giving tax breaks to the richest Americans,” he said.
WKOW 27 (Caissa Casarez)
State Democratic lawmakers voiced their concerns about the Republican candidates ahead of Tuesday’s presidential debate in Milwaukee.
Milwaukee’s mayor joined the Democratic National Committee and others at Milwaukee’s City Hall for a press conference Monday.
One assemblyman says the GOP candidates need stronger policies.
“Anti-immigrant rhetoric, you hear them talk a lot about Christianity and their belief in god but you don’t see the policies that back up those beliefs,” said State Rep. Mandela Barnes (D-Milwaukee). “What you see is a set of candidates hell-bent on destroying our country.”
WisPolitics (Jordyn Noennig)
“It’s fitting that this Republican debate is held here, in Gov. Walker’s backyard,” state Democratic Party Chairwoman Martha Laning said. “There probably isn’t another state better than Wisconsin that knows what happens when the Republicans’ agenda is rolled out.”
She said cuts to education funding and more restrictive voter ID laws have harmed Wisconsinites since Republicans took control of state government. And, Laning said, she fears Republicans would implement similar plans on the national stage if one makes it to the White House.
Also speaking were state Reps. Chris Taylor, of Madison, and Mandela Barnes, of Milwaukee. He criticized the GOP candidates’ stances on issues such as immigration laws, women’s issues and funding for higher education.
“What you see is a set of candidates hellbent on ruining our country,” Barnes said.