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Letters to The Platteville Journal for Oct. 8
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Support for Marklein

Roots and understanding where you come from are very important when we decide who should be our next state senator. Let me make the case why we should support Howard Marklein.

Howard was raised on a dairy farm in rural Spring Green. Howard attended St. Luke’s in Plain and St. John’s Grade School in Spring Green and graduated from River Valley High School in Spring Green. His opponent, Pat Bomhack, is from Waukesha, who only came to Iowa County to do legal research for Iowa County Circuit Judge William Dyke just a few years ago.

After graduation from college, Howard worked for First Wisconsin National Bank of Milwaukee. But he came back to Iowa County after a couple of years to begin his public accounting career in Dodgeville. Even when he had the opportunity to move up and take posts in other parts of the state, Howard always came back home where his roots were.

Growing up on a farm in southwestern Wisconsin grounds you in a very unique way. It teaches you a work ethic that is unparalleled in this state. The sense of community and helping your neighbors is forever instilled in the fabric of your being. I see this in Howard as he has represented us in the Assembly these last four years. His opponent doesn’t share much about where he grew up in Waukesha, because you would see a unique difference in what is important to him compared to Howard.

Nineteen percent of all farms in Wisconsin are in the eight counties that make up all or parts of the 17th Senate District. Agriculture is one of the most important economic engines of this senate district, and I greatly appreciate all the support farm families across the district have received from Rep. Marklein. His efforts to protect Right to Farm and have our farmland taxed fairly have been two of the most important positions he could have possibly taken as our member of the Assembly.

His opponent, an attorney with a master’s degree, didn’t even know what Right to Farm was and why it was even important for him to support it. Pat grew up in a large urban county where farming isn’t the way of life like it is here, so it is easy to understand why Pat doesn’t value the Right to Farm.

This is why I think roots matter. When you look at Part’s website where he lists his four priorities for the campaign he doesn’t even mention agriculture or farming, which is probably the most important issue in what is likely the largest farm senate district in the state. Not even a mention.

Howard’s roots are deep in this district and his track record makes him the only choice to be our next state senator. His four years of votes protecting and supporting farm families across the district on taxes, farm machinery, the Right to Farm and so many more issues important to rural Wisconsin stand in stark comparison to his opponent who moved here to do legal research. Bomhack knew he couldn’t win as a Democrat in his home county of Waukesha, but he might have a chance in southwestern Wisconsin.

We need to stand up for someone who understands southwestern Wisconsin like Howard does. We need our next state senator to be a person who has served on the agricultural committee and can hit the ground running and not need on the job training like his opponent will.

Steve Freese
Freese was the representative of the 51st Assembly District from 1991 to 2007.

Poverty and Walker

Schoolyard bullies look for the weak and those who they think they can beat up or intimidate.

Bullies can be after many things. They might want lunches, money, or just to be in control of people in the schoolyard. If there is one bully, a kid might be able to stand up and show that she or he is not weak and easy prey. The bully may go to easier prey. If there is a gang of bullies, then a person needs to find a helpful adult or a bunch of friends who will make the bullies back off.

Wisconsin’s economy is not much different than a schoolyard run by a bunch of bullies. Through “legislation” by the governor and tea party Republican politicians, the weak are being preyed upon.

Women, children, and the poor earn below-poverty wages, and suffer loss of food stamps, healthcare, and Headstart. According to a Sept. 1, 2010 Milwaukee Journal Sentinel story by Bill Glauber, there were about 11 percent of Wisconsinites in poverty. In 2014, there are 13.5 percent of Wisconsinites in poverty according to That is an increase of more than 110,000, a bit less than the number of jobs the governor has created.

The best political hope for the poor is that they register and vote and become a force against the bullies. Until then, the bullies will keep their wages below poverty and income inequality will grow. More than 110,000 Wisconsinites have found how easy it is to fall from middle class into poverty under the bullies. Do the rest want to roll the dice on another four years? That is a dicey choice.

Daniel Holzman

Before birth

Did you know:
•    At 18 days, a baby’s heart begins to beat.
•    At 43 days, the baby’s brain coordinates movements.
•    At eight weeks, all organs are functioning.
•    At nine weeks, the baby has permanent, individual fingerprints.
•    At 10 weeks, the baby has sense of touch (comfort and pain).
•    At 12 weeks, a baby can smile, suck his or her thumb, and make a fist.

More than 2 million couples wait to adopt — and that includes children of all races and those with special needs.

Any textbook will confirm what every doctor knows: Life begins at conception.

Jerome Cullen