Mary Hoeft, running to represent the 7th Congressional District in Washington, is a professor of Communication Arts and French at the University of Wisconsin-Barron County in Rice Lake, Wisconsin. Her daughter Kelly is a law enforcement officer in Madison and her son Ryan, also an officer, died serving the people of St. Louis Park, Minnesota.
Hoeft is a Fulbright Scholar, author, and Wisconsin Idea Fellow who was awarded the Chancellor’s Career Award for Teaching Excellence. In her community, Hoeft served two terms on the Rice Lake School Board and was President of the Board of Directors of Barron County Restorative Justice Programs She also served as a conference facilitator for Restorative Justice.
Hoeft’s candidacy for Congress is endorsed by Congressman Dave Obey who served the 7th Congressional District for more than 40 years. Congressman Obey wrote that “Mary has the qualities necessary to be our strongest candidate.” Obey describes Hoeft as a “meat and potatoes” candidate. Hoeft agrees, saying that she is energized by the opportunity to take Sean Duffy on and confront him on his failure to meet the needs of citizens in the 7th Congressional District.
Hoeft asks, “Where is Duffy as the Eau Pleine Reservoir is overcome with algae? Where is he as our infrastructure crumbles? How is it that Duffy can deny climate change as scientists worldwide warn that we must find solutions now?” Hoeft said it is time to have a congressional representative who listens to the concerns of the people; a representative who responds with “I have heard you and I will do something” instead of “That’s not my issue.”
Hoeft is deeply concerned about our economy and how our economy impacts the ability of university students to be students. Mary said, “My students work fulltime jobs to support parents and siblings. Sean Duffy’s focus is on Wall Street, not on students struggling to make it through college. He has voted repeatedly in support of a Paul Ryan budget that poses a grave threat to Social Security, Healthcare, and Education while offering no alternatives. The citizens of the 7th Congressional District deserve better. When I decided to run for Congress, that decision was based on my desire to make life better for the people of the 7th Congressional District. I will work relentlessly to achieve that goal.”
I was born and raised in Marathon County. Dad was in the Marines during my childhood and mom was a swing shift factory worker at Wausau Papers. Life was rough, because of our mom’s schedule and an absent father, but we still had enough to get by. Our mother was able to afford a mortgage, food, medical and dental needs.
In my lifetime, I have watched this possibility go away. Now, in order to make that kind of money, you must go to college. My sister has more student loan debt than she will ever be able to pay off. We need politicians who care about the working class; Politicians who realize that a strong middle class means a strong country. I realize this because I have watched it change in my lifetime. I have worked very hard during my life and if you send me to DC, I will work very hard for the citizens of Wisconsin.
Joel A. Lewis
One of the topics that commonly come up in discussions among leadership in the party is the need to involve young people in the leadership of the party. Because the need for new blood in the party is clear to anyone who pays attention there are several initiatives being started to address this issue at the state and local levels.
Dorothy Miller is our Membership Chairperson who recently attended a meeting of statewide Democrats that looked at a number of aspects related to membership. The good news is that the Marathon County Democrats are growing in number comparable to some of the best Democratic area in the state. The bad news is that we are also growing in age. We were below the norm on attracting youth.
The Bernie youth showed a great deal of interest and energy in politics but keeping them involved has been a challenge. The jury is still out on how well we will do with them locally and nationally.
Mandy Wright is in a leadership position in the Young Democrats organization that is trying to harness the energy and idealism of youth in the area.
Finally the local party leadership is engaged with young members of the party who have demonstrated interest to up their participation. We are committed to cultivating youth leadership, so if you know any young people who might be interested in joining party please do not be bashful in asking them to come to a party meeting. The picnic might be a good start. And if there is any way anyone in leadership could help please feel free to contact any of us.
• June 30-July 4, Marathon Park, Wausau Area 4th of July Celebration
• Thursday, July 21- MC Dem’s picnic at George St. Park, Rothschild, 5:30 pm
• July 25-28 Democratic Convention
• Saturday, July 30, 400 Block Party, Downtown Wausau
• Wisconsin Valley Fair August 2-7, Marathon Park
• Labor Day Parade, Monday, September 5
There has been a lot happening in the political world in Marathon County recently. Some of the happenings are things that could frustrate and divide Democrats. At this writing there are three Democratic candidates candidates running for the House of Representatives in the 7th Congressional District, two running for the 86th Assembly seat and last but not least two running for President of the United States.
The slings and arrows of the political season are clear to be seen by anyone who pays attention. Feelings are easily hurt, tempers flair and competitive juices run in unpredictable directions. This makes us all uneasy and worried about how and if we can all come together to win elections in the fall.
There are a number of powerful forces on the side of unity. The most powerful are the Republicans themselves. Just invoking the names of locals like Sean Duffy, John Spiros, and Pat Snyder is plenty to get started. They are among the most arcane, regressive forces in Wisconsin today. They, like Scott Walker, are totally dedicated to shoveling more money in the form of tax breaks and deregulation to wealthy donors to their campaigns. To fund these giveaways they continually hack at the educational system at all levels and cast a blind eye at environmental issues. Their values are upside down and totally at odds with all Democratic candidates.
At the last Democratic Party meeting, Professor George Kraft Phd. from UW – Stevens Point, spoke at length and detail about research conducted over the last fifty years on the effects of high capacity wells on depletion of the Central Sands Region of Wisconsin. This affects us all in very basic ways. As the water table drops, streams and lakes become more shallow, turn into wetlands or disappear. Lakefront houses become houses, fishable streams disappear and public parks lose much of their recreational value and beauty.
On the national scene Democrats can debate Hillary versus Bernie as energetically and at times angrily as they want – but Donald Trump – really! There is an expression about cutting off one’s nose to spite your face. This would be cutting off your head.
The rise of Donald Trump in this country has been the most alarming political movement to befall this country since George Wallace. He is a hostile to minorities, a narcissist, and a total phony. He is unmoored, will contradict himself in the same sentence and knows as little about our constitution as he does about international relations. If you are a Hillary / Bernie or bust person please reconsider.
We must unite at every level and return a sense of trust, honor and morality to our political system.