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Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Issue of the Week: Political Ads for Alberta Darling's Recall Election

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The Aug. 9 recall election for Sen. Alberta Darling (R-River Hills) is less than three weeks away, and the well-funded, right-wing special-interest groups are invading Wisconsin to try to distort the facts and deceive the voters. That's why it is so important to question what you hear in the political ads leading up to the Aug. 9 election—because adherence to the truth often is not a consideration for the hired guns that produce these ads.

Case in point: As co-chair of the state budget-writing Joint Finance Committee, Darling recently engineered more than $1.5 billion worth of cuts to public education. For a former public school teacher to so seriously damage public education is both a disgrace and a serious assault on the future economic growth of our great state. But if you were to believe the ads by special-interest groups such as the American Federation for Children, you would think there is no stronger advocate for our kids than Darling. Just the opposite is true: Cutting more than $1.5 billion in funding for public education is not the way a children's advocate votes.

It would be nice to see accuracy in these ads so that voters could compare Darling's record to their values and make a sound decision on Election Day. But Darling and her corporate supporters are trying to convey the notion that she is a moderate Republican when, in fact, she has shown herself to be more extreme than Gov. Scott Walker on a number of issues. For example, Darling wanted to reinstate for-profit bail bondsmen in Wisconsin for the first time in 30 years, even though they had been linked to corrupt practices in the judicial system. Even Walker had the sense to veto this provision.

So when you hear the ads, please check the facts.

Heroes of the Week

Penfield Children's Center Volunteers

Raising a child is hard work—even more so for parents of children with disabilities or developmental delays. The Penfield Children's Center's mission is to help children "reach their full potential through education, therapy services and family programs."

Located at 833 N. 26th St., the nonprofit offers early intervention "birth-to-3" services for children with delays or disabilities, a special care nursery for sick infants and toddlers, outpatient therapy for children up to age 18 and educational and support services for parents and caregivers on a free or sliding-fee basis.

Teenagers, students and adults volunteer in the classrooms and special care nursery, and also assist with special projects and fund-raising events. Readers who wish to donate their time and talents to help children with special needs and their parents are urged to call 414-345-6330 or visit www.penfieldchildren.org.

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