DATE: 5/9/19
LOCATION: Menomonee Falls Public Library

6 Menomonee Falls Action Team members attended Thursday’s listening session with our State Representative Brandtjen. We raised the majority of the issues and held the Representative to the facts as well as we could in the format provided.

Topics we raised and enjoyed strong discussion on included:

  • Why Rep. Brandtjen doesn’t support Medicaid Expansion in Wisconsin
    • It would only help about 84,000 Wisconsinites obtain healthcare
    • She is not in favor of added “welfare”
    • Community Memorial Hospital recently wrote her a letter stating that due to seeing too many Medicaid patients, they lost $14 million last year and adding more Medicaid patients could kill hospitals
    • Brandtjen would rather have more market-based solutions like restoring a program similar to HIRSP (a health insurance risk sharing plan for those denied coverage due to preexisting conditions)
  • What her definition of welfare is
  • Why marijuana should be legalized/decriminalized in Wisconsin
  • How she will ensure special education is fully funded
  • Keeping creationism/intelligent design out of public schools
  • Why she doesn’t support an independent, nonpartisan, nonpolitical body handling Wisconsin redistricting, removing partisan gerrymandering in favor of fair maps
    • Brandtjen said what’s fair is never fair enough for everyone
    • The best part about having legislators draw the maps is that we can vote her out if we don’t like what she does
      • SPOILER ALERT: No, we can’t with the way they draw maps. That’s the point.
  • Need for real investment in infrastructure, including for our crumbling roads and bridges
  • Brandtjen claiming that Gov. Evers’s budget is “unserious” (direct quote)
  • Why she chose not to debate Aaron Matteson (D) in the 2018 midterm election

Items put forth by other residents in attendance included:

  • Undocumented individuals taking too many jobs from Americans
    • Brandtjen said there are tens of thousands of open jobs in Wisconsin available for hire
    • She would rather have “illegals” come out from the shadows with some form of identification like a green card and have them working and paying taxes
    • However, she was disappointed to hear “Milwaukee will not abide by ICE rules” because it puts us all at an increased safety risk.
  • A citizen thanked Rep. Brandtjen for her strong support of Brian Hagedorn and said he believed her standing by Judge Hagedorn’s side was important to his win
  • Eliminating the gas tax and installing transponders in every registered Wisconsin vehicle, similar to those on tollways
    • Fees would be assessed for using all roads
      • Non-Wisconsinites would be charged a higher rate
    • Brandtjen said she supported a higher fee for electric vehicles because they do not pay any gas tax for road use

We appreciate Rep. Brandtjen holding listening sessions throughout the district and respecting that residents hold a variety of views, each valuable and worth hearing. The event’s format also permitted residents to hear opposing positions from their own neighbors in a largely respectful environment, which in recent years, has become too much of a rarity.

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