Wisconsin Conservation Voters IEC invests $1.5 million in 2023 spring election

Apr 03, 2023

MADISON – Tomorrow, Wisconsinites head to the polls to decide the outcome of the most important election in the country in 2023.

“The stakes on April 4 couldn’t be higher,” said Deputy Director Seth Hoffmeister. “What we decide tomorrow will have an impact on Wisconsin and the country for years to come. If we elect Judge Janet Protasieiwcz, we can break right-wing extremist control over the court that puts our human rights, freedom to vote, and environment in jeopardy, and instead, ensure a future where all Wisconsinites can live and thrive. The future of our democracy is on the line, and there is no greater threat to it than Dan Kelly.”

Like every statewide race in Wisconsin, this is going to be close. That’s why Wisconsin Conservation Voters IEC has invested more than $1.5 million to make sure that on April 4, Wisconsin continues to move forward. This program ensures that democracy and the environment are the real winners on election night. Here’s how Wisconsin Conservation Voters IEC is doing that:

  • Knocking on nearly 150,000 doors of voters in Dane, Milwaukee, Waukesha, Washington, Ozaukee, and Portage Counties, including 44,000 doors in the crucial 8th Senate District;
  • Nearly 10,000 handwritten postcards to voters written by more than 130 volunteers;
  • Two pieces of direct mail to voters in Senate District 8;
  • Two pieces of direct mail and three weeks of digital ads to voters in Green Bay;
  • 3,000 phone calls to voters in local elections, where elections are often decided by a handful of votes;
  • 15,000 text messages to conservation voters ahead of the February primary, helping achieve the record turnout of that election.

After the 2020 election, the Wisconsin Supreme Court was one vote away from throwing out Wisconsin’s electoral college votes and siding with an unfounded Trump lawsuit. Right-wing insurrectionists and their billionaire funders know that Wisconsin’s 2024 electoral votes could come before the court again, and the outcome of that case could decide who becomes the next President of the United States. They trust Dan Kelly, because he was paid six-figures by the Republican Party to advise and instigate election conspiracy theories.

“We’re already feeling the impacts of climate change in Wisconsin,” Hoffmeister said. “From extreme storms, to record flooding, and rising energy costs, we’re running out of time to address climate change and make the transition to a clean energy future. The Wisconsin Supreme Court is the referee for enforcing state and federal environmental protections. Who we elect to the court decides if we tip the scales to corporate polluters or if we protect our air and water for future generations.”

Wisconsin Conservation Voters IEC knows this is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to invest in clean energy and address climate change. The court is likely to make decisions that impact the ability to respond to one of the biggest challenges Wisconsinites face today. Judge Janet Protasiewicz is a chance to elect a court that won’t give corporate polluters a free pass leaving Wisconsinites to deal with the consequences.

Elsewhere in Wisconsin, there are other important elections that will impact democracy and the environment. In Senate District 8, Republicans are hoping to secure their super majority in the state senate. Unprecedented powers come with a Republican supermajority, including removing statewide officials from office for vague, undefined reasons – something the Republican candidate Dan Knodl has not ruled out. While this seat has long been held by Republicans, environmental lawyer Jodi Habush Sinykin is looking to upset the odds and make history.

In Green Bay, forward momentum on the environment and defense against election conspiracy theorists is on the line. Few local elections this year have as much consequence as re-electing Mayor Eric Genrich. Local elections all across the state, from Mount Pleasant to Sheboygan to the Town of Peshtigo, will have major impacts on clean water, climate change, and the freedom to vote. Click here to see our full slate of local endorsements.

“Tomorrow we will find out what Wisconsin’s future might hold,” said Hoffmeister. “As the window to address climate change closes, and the debate over whether or not we choose to live in a democracy rages, we don’t have to leave it to chance. We can decide to live in a brighter future full of dignity and prosperity for all. While much is out of our control, we know this program is one that helps with that choice, and as we head to the polls, we rest assured that a brighter future is in reach.”

For more information

Contact Ryan Billingham, Communications Director, Wisconsin Conservation Voters, 608-208-1129 (office), 608-213-6972 (mobile/text), or ryan@conservationvoters.org