Why don't TV ads mention collective bargaining? - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Why don't TV ads mention collective bargaining?


Six Republican seats being challenged in recall races across Wisconsin. The recall push was largely due to Republicans' support of changes to collective bargaining.

But judging by the political ads on television right now, you wouldn't know that was ever an issue.

Newsline 9 examined every political advertisement running on its air Wednesday. Eleven different ads were running all day. They come from candidates and political action committees, and they cover many different topics.

Ad topics on air Wednesday included the John Doe investigation, tax breaks, and jobs.

But these ads don't mention a central issue that led us to this recall election: collective bargaining. Just one—from the governor—lightly touches it.

"Our reforms are working," said the governor in a new advertisement.

Back in early 2011, thousands of protestors voiced opposition over a Republican proposal to strip most collective bargaining rights from most public workers and require them to pay more for retirement and health insurance. That proposal passed, leading to recall efforts on both sides. Now, a year later, the governor, lieutenant governor, and several state senators face recall elections.

So why don't we hear more about collective bargaining? Eric Giordano, director of the Center for Civic Engagement at UW-Marathon County, says that issue wasn't the only one that spurred the recall.

"I think there were a lot of issues people were unhappy with," said Giordano.

He says collective bargaining was a big deal—just not as much now.

"It isn't really the hot button issue that people feel are motivating voters right now," said Giordano.

Indeed, it's clear a number of issues are driving this historic process, less than two weeks before the recall elections on June 5.

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