2018 | Week of March 26 | #1248
Do you really believe that what you believe is really real? Need that repeated? Do you really believe that what you believe is really real?
When we believe that what we believe is really real, our actions show it. So, do you really believe that your values are important? By values, I mean the ideas and beliefs that anchor you, those things that guide and direct you daily—like what you believe about marriage, family, life and even religious freedom, about truth, about authority.
Here’s the reality: you and I have an opportunity between now and next Tuesday, April 3, to voice our values—to act on what we really believe—by voting in the spring general election. In a very real way, in a Republic, our vote is a great way to give voice to our values. The question is will we be good stewards of this opportunity?
Some basics about this election. This is our spring nonpartisan general election, meaning all offices that are not elected by party. The one statewide race on everyone’s ballot is for a seat on the Wisconsin Supreme Court. Judge Michael Screnock and Judge Rebecca Dallet survived the February primary and are going head to head for a ten-year term on our state’s highest court.
Anytime we elect a supreme court justice, the stakes are high. And be grateful you have a direct say in judges through the ballot box because many states don’t allow that. That said, we need to vote knowledgeably and responsibly in this race.
Some background on these candidates. Both are circuit court judges. Michael Screnock was appointed by Governor Walker to fill a judicial vacancy in Sauk County in 2015 and then was actually elected to that seat in 2016. Rebecca Dallet was first elected to the Milwaukee County bench in 2008 and has been re-elected since then. Both have some private attorney practice in their backgrounds.
Among others Screnock’s endorsements include Pro-Life Wisconsin, Wisconsin Family Action, and Republican State Senator Leah Vukmir. Dallet’s endorsements include Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin, the Wisconsin AFL-CIO and Democrat US Senator Tammy Baldwin.
Regarding judicial philosophy or why they are running, Screnock says, “I think the most important thing,…is that I believe strongly in the rule of law and I believe that the role of the court is to interpret and to apply the law, but not to rewrite the law or to try to legislate from the bench.” Dallet says, “I’m running for Supreme Court justice…because our rights are under attack, our civil rights. Every day, tweet by tweet. Our right to clean air and water. Our right to equal protection, women’s rights. And we’ve got a broken Supreme Court. And what we need is someone with experience and values to stand up and repair that court.” There’s more on these two candidates on our Voter Information Publication for this race. That document is available at wifamilycouncil.org.
The other statewide item is a referendum that would amend our state constitution by eliminating the office of state treasurer. A yes vote is to eliminate the office, and a no vote is to keep the office. To us this isn’t a moral issue; it’s a matter of personal preference.
In addition to these statewide matters, you’ll see all kinds of local races on your ballot—mayors, city council, village or town boards, county boards, various levels of judges and school board—and maybe even a local referendum. Knowing what and who is on your ballot before you vote is critical. Either call your municipal clerk and ask or visit myvote.wi.gov and check your sample ballot there.
Early voting is going on this week through the close of business this Friday. To find out what hours you can vote early in person, you need to call your municipal clerk’s office. Absentee ballots must be received in the mail no later than Election Day.
Who represents you at all levels of government is important. Your values—those things you hold dear—will either be respected and maybe even protected and promoted or they will be ignored and maybe even totally disrespected and trampled on by those elected to office. Casting a knowledgeable and responsible vote—and encouraging others to join you—shows you really believe that what you believe is really real and is worth taking action to protect and advance. Will you make sure you voice your values in this spring election?
For Wisconsin Family Council, this is Julaine Appling reminding you the Prophet Hosea said, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.”