Marti Mikkelson

News Reporter

Marti, a Waukesha native, joined the WUWM news team in February of 1999. She is also host of WUWM's weekly political podcast, Capitol Notes.

Previously, she was an anchor and reporter at WTMJ in Milwaukee, WIBA in Madison, and WLIP in Kenosha.

Marti’s work has been recognized by RTNDA, the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association, the Northwest Broadcast News Association, Associated Press, Public Radio News Directors Incorporated, and the Milwaukee Press Club.

Marti earned a bachelor’s degree in Mass Communications from the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse. Marti currently lives on her favorite side of town – Milwaukee’s east side.

» Contact WUWM News

EMILY HAMER / WISCONSIN CENTER FOR INVESTIGATIVE JOURNALISM

Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers is urging lawmakers to work together to address the state’s farm crisis. In his annual State of the State address Wednesday night, the Democrat said struggling farmers need help now. So he called for a special session to begin next week.

ChiccoDodiFC / stock.adobe.com

Republicans who control the Wisconsin Legislature approved a bill Tuesday that would impose new restrictions on the use of firefighting foams, in an effort to curtail groundwater pollution. The measure passed in both the state Assembly and Senate. The topic generated heated discussion in the Senate, especially from Democrats.

pinchof

The voter purge case took some more turns last week. An Ozaukee County judge again ordered the Wisconsin Elections Commission to immediately drop more than 200,000 names from the voter rolls. It's suspected that those voters may have moved and haven't re-registered. Then, an appeals court sided with the commission and again put the purge on hold while lawsuits continue. Meanwhile, the Wisconsin Supreme Court decided not to take the case for the time being.

White House / United States Senate / White House

The first Marquette Law School poll of the 2020 election year was released Wednesday. It shows the needle hasn’t moved much in terms of Wisconsin voters' views on impeachment, support for President Trump and the Democratic presidential field. It was, however, the first poll taken since the Iran conflict and voters had plenty to say about that.

Prostock-studio / stock.adobe.com

Wisconsin is seeing a pretty severe flu season. State health officials say more than 600 people have been hospitalized since October, and 15 have died, including a child. Flu seasons typically span from October to May.

Tom Haupt keeps track of influenza cases for the Wisconsin Department of Health Services. He says hospitalizations increased dramatically over the holidays, and the numbers so far are higher than the state has seen in the previous five seasons. Haupt says one thing is different this year: younger people are being hit harder.

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Republican and Democratic leaders met at the State Capitol last week to place names on the state presidential primary ballot. Democrats approved 14 names for the April 7 election. They include Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Pete Buttigieg and Amy Klobuchar. But GOP officials submitted and approved only one name — that of President Donald Trump, even though other Republicans have thrown their hats into the ring.  

WUWM's Marti Mikkelson asked JR Ross of wispolitics.com about the decision in this week's Capitol Notes conversation.

Courtesy of TJ Meyers-Jansky

Every summer on Father’s Day weekend, a huge festival used to take place in West Allis. It was called “West Allis Western Days.” It started in 1964 and saw its heyday in the '80s and '90s. Its signature event was an elaborate parade that included up to 500 horses and dozens of marching bands.

And then one day, it just ended.

Phil Reimer grew up going. He still wonders what happened to the festival, so he reached out to Bubbler Talk to find out.

Courtesy of Ed Fallone, Jill Karofsky, Daniel Kelly

This spring, Wisconsin voters will decide which candidate will earn a 10-year term on the state Supreme Court. Incumbent Justice Daniel Kelly faces a challenge from Marquette University Law professor Ed Fallone and Dane County Circuit Judge Jill Karofsky.

Although the office is non-partisan, the court currently has a 5-2 conservative majority. Kelly is supported by conservatives. Liberals have endorsed Fallone and Karofsky.

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

For this week's Capitol Notes, we look ahead to the political stories that'll likely make headlines in Wisconsin in 2020. Probably the biggest is Wisconsin's role in the presidential race. President Trump narrowly won the state in 2016, which means the spotlight is on Wisconsin this year, along with a few other swing states. 

WUWM's Marti Mikkelson asked JR Ross of wispolitics.com what he thinks the presidential race will look like in Wisconsin.

Courtesy of Daniel Kelly

Updated on Monday, Jan. 6, 2020 at 12:35 p.m.

When Wisconsin residents cast votes in the spring primary next month, they'll find three candidates on the ballot for state Supreme Court. Incumbent Justice Daniel Kelly faces a challenge from Marquette University Law School professor Ed Fallone and Dane County Circuit Judge Jill Karofsky. The top two vote-getters will advance to the April election.  Liberals are supporting Fallone and Karofsky, while conservatives are backing Kelly.  

We interviewed all three candidates.

MAAYAN SILVER

A conservative law firm is asking a judge to find the Wisconsin Elections Commission in contempt for not purging more than 200,000 voters from the rolls.

A judge last month ordered the purge because the voters may have moved.

The conservative Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty says the Elections Commission is violating state law and must immediately drop the voters from the rolls or face fines.

Courtesy of Jill Karofsky

Updated on Monday, Jan. 6, 2020 at 12:36 p.m.  

Not only will Wisconsin be a battleground in the presidential race this year, it may also see a contentious campaign for State Supreme Court. Marquette Law Professor Ed Fallone and Dane County Circuit Judge Jill Karofsky are looking to replace incumbent Justice Daniel Kelly. The primary is next month, with the general election in April.  

Liberals have endorsed Fallone and Karofsky. Kelly, who was appointed in 2016 by then-Republican Gov. Scott Walker is supported by conservatives.

Courtesy of Ed Fallone

Updated on Monday, Jan. 6, 2020 at 12:38 p.m.  

This spring, Wisconsin voters will decide which candidate will earn a 10-year term on the state Supreme Court. Incumbent Justice Daniel Kelly faces a challenge from Marquette Law professor Ed Fallone and Dane County Circuit Judge Jill Karofsky. 

The primary will be held Feb. 18, followed by the general election on April 7. That's the same day as Wisconsin's presidential primary.

For this week's Capitol Notes, we examine the top political stories of the year.  It began with the inauguration of Democratic Gov. Tony Evers.  He defeated Republican Scott Walker the previous fall. 

Evers' relationship with the GOP-controlled legislature was contentious from the start.  Republicans passed laws before Evers took office, limiting Evers' powers, as well as those of new Democratic Attorney General Josh Kaul.  The move sparked protests at the State Capitol and a number of lawsuits.  

State Capitol/Adobe stock

Foxconn is back in the news, with questions about whether it will qualify for up to $3 billion in state tax credits in coming years.  The Taiwanese electronics giant signed a contract with the state when the company was planning to build large LCD screens at a huge plant in Racine County, creating up to 13,000 jobs.  But Foxconn has since reduced the size of its plant and has said it'll manufacture smaller LCD screens.  It's not clear how many jobs will be created.

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