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Sen. Brad Pfaff frustrated by Wisconsin GOP’s adjournment in seconds of another special session

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Wisconsin state Sen. Brad Pfaff greets people outside the La Crosse Courthouse on Tuesday, Oct. 4, 2022 (PHOTO: Brad Williams)

Republicans at the Wisconsin state Capitol in Madison quickly ended another special session Tuesday called weeks ago by Gov. Tony Evers.

That makes the third session called by Evers this year, which was shut down in a matter of seconds by the opposing party, and 11th during his stint as governor that have gone completely ignored.

Tuesday’s session was called to promote discussion of using referendums to pass laws in Wisconsin, on issues such as abortion rights. After the seconds-long session, Democratic state Sen. Brad Pfaff expressed his frustration to La Crosse reporters outside the courthouse.


This is the 11th time Republicans have gaveled in and out of a special session called by Evers.

Here is the list of prior ones:

  • Reproductive Rights/Healthcare Access – June 22, 2022
  • Surplus Plan – Tax Cut – March 8, 2022
  • School Funding – K-12, Special Ed, UW System, Technical College – July 27, 2021
  • Badger Care Expansion – May 25, 2021
  • Unemployment Insurance Modernization – January 19, 2021
  • Use of Force by Law Enforcement – August 31, 2020
  • All Mail Spring Election and 7th CD Special Election – April 4, 2020
  • K-12 School Funding – February 11, 2020
  • Agriculture Funding – January 28, 2020
  • Gun Violence – November 7, 202

“We have a majority party in the legislature that just gavels in and gavels out,” Pfaff said. “They will not work across the aisle to try and find any type of common ground. They will not provide anybody with their thoughts and their ideas on what we can do here.”

The governor is hoping to update Wisconsin’s 1849 law banning nearly all abortions, which took effect again after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the Roe v. Wade decision.

“We were given less than 15 seconds,” Pfaff said. “Again, I just shake my head, and I ask why. We have a legislature right now that doesn’t want to lead.”

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.

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