Empower Wisconsin | Jan. 6, 2021
By M.D. Kittle
MADISON — So many political tools seem to come and go, but Wisconsin appears to be stuck with Gov. Tony Evers for at least another 727 days.
But who’s counting?
For so many reasons the highly partisan liberal is Empower Wisconsin’s Tool of the Year. Let us count the ways.
Ever the Big Government bureaucrat, Evers truly showed his spots in 2020, grabbing as much power as the law would allow — and then some — in the face of once-in-a-century pandemic. His order locking down the state in March beat the hell out of Wisconsin’s economy, particularly the hospitality industry.
As hundreds of thousands of Wisconsinites lost their jobs, Team Evers, which could see the COVID-19 typhoon moving west was criminally ill-prepared to handle the impact. Evers’ Department of Workforce Development was the first to fall, and lo these many months later has yet to truly catch up with the inundation of jobless claims caused in large part by the governor’s ill-advised lockdown. Ultimately, as Wisconsin Spotlight reported, Evers was so disconnected, so hands-off amid the crisis, records show he met with his ill-equipped DWD chief just three times between March and September — and one of those meetings was to ask for the secretary’s resignation.
Evers was roundly (and rightly) criticized for his handling of less than “peaceful” protests against police brutality that too often devolved into brutal and wanton assaults on police, innocent bystanders and private and public property. As Empower Wisconsin reported, the governor and his team froze on the night rioters ripped up Capitol Square, destroyed iconic statues of progress, and beat up a state senator.
In Kenosha, where protests turned deadly following the police-involved shooting of a black man, Evers castigated law enforcement before he had all the facts, helping to light the fuse on three days of violence and destruction that obliterated blocks of the Lake Michigan city. He was negligently slow in calling up the National Guard to help keep the peace, and he played politics with the Trump administration’s offers to send in federal assistance.
And then there was Evers just being Evers. After a spate of public health orders restricting everything from the freedom to worship and assemble to the ability to operate a business, the governor declared there would be no Christmas tree — or science-themed holiday tree, as the would-be Woke politician likes to think of it — in the Capitol Rotunda. His edict was supposedly issued in the name of public safety. When two Republican lawmakers put up an artificial tree, Team Evers removed it. Twice. Gov. Grinch, once more, proved he is a tool of the left, which gets all itchy when anybody mentions Christmas.
Of course, there’s more. Much more. Like Evers’ flipping and flopping over outing businesses with two or more employees who have tested positive for COVID-19. After saying privacy laws prevented him from doing so, the governor changed his mind. A Waukesha County judge slapped a restraining order on the administration while the lawsuit is argued.
Even as he and unelected health bureaucrats stripped citizens of fundamental liberties, the governor pushed to expand state government and the far left agenda.
Yes, 2020 was filled with political tools. But no one was a bigger tool than Wisconsin’s Pale Rider.
Gov. Tony Evers deservedly, and richly so, is Empower Wisconsin’s Tool of 2020.