Wisconsin struggling to find enough attorneys due to lowest pay in nation


Wisconsin’s low compensation rate for private attorneys has contributed to the shortage of lawyers willing to represent people who can’t afford a private attorney, according to state officials.  The state Public Defender’s Office pays attorneys $40 an hour to represent poorer clients, the lowest compensation rate in the U.S. for such cases. > AP News

Assembly Republicans pass full slate of Walker’s welfare limits

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The Wisconsin Assembly on Thursday approved Gov. Scott Walker’s proposed welfare limits and sought federal help to cover more of the nearly $90 million in costs from the proposals. Republicans approved the bills on party-line 62-35 votes, sending them to the Senate, where they are expected to pass quickly. > Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Rep. Jimmy Anderson: Walker’s playbook is still divide and conquer


After my first year in office, I have learned there is one constant you can always count on: Scott Walker will always choose to divide us rather than unite us, including using our most needy and vulnerable Wisconsinites as pawns to be sacrificed. > Cap Times

Lawmakers: Lack of transit access to new Madison DMV location ‘alarming’


Given the state’s voter ID requirement, seven Dane County lawmakers have joined the City of Madison’s pushback to a planned new DMV location on the Far West Side, saying it is nearly inaccessible by public transit. The city has filed a federal civil rights complaint against the Wisconsin DOT over the plan. > Madison.com

Baldwin challengers open door to cutting health care, welfare programs


While U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin has argued against cuts to social programs like Medicaid and Medicare, which Speaker Paul Ryan has hinted at, her GOP challengers in next year’s election — state Sen. Leah Vukmir (R-Brookfield) and Marine veteran Kevin Nicholson — are opening the door to that. > Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Budget committee rejects income tax cut, credit for working poor, while passing cuts for rich, business owners


Lawmakers next week will take up a two-year spending plan that includes tax cuts for wealthy families and business owners but rejects Gov. Walker’s proposals to ease the tax burden on poorer families, under amendments adopted late Wednesday by the Legislature’s Republican-controlled budget committee. > Wisconsin State Journal

Walker, Republicans see a lot to like in state budget


State Republicans see a lot to like in the proposed budget that could pass the Legislature next week, but Democratic opponents say it is a pay-off for the wealthy. Walker challenger Tony Evers said the budget’s tax breaks for the rich and rejected tax credit for the working poor shows Republicans are out of touch. > Wisconsin Public Radio