“Democracy is a set of rules that allows all of us to participate in making community decisions. At its best, democracy puts people first. People are first when the rules make voting easy, allow for more public participation, more openness, more disclosure, and more public discussion. Restrictions on voting, floods of corporate money, and speed and secrecy in the making of laws are the tools of those who seek to centralize control, restrict democratic practices, and take power from the people.”
–Kathleen Vinehout


In recent years, laws passed by the Republicans have diminished democracy and made our politics worse. Voting has been made more difficult. Restrictions on lobbying and campaign contributions have been eased. Oversight of elections has been turned over to a partisan appointed board.  Speed and secrecy in the passing of controversial laws has become commonplace. Participation by the public has been made more difficult. More and more decisions are removed from the control of local voters and local officials.

I fought these changes in the Senate. I am committed to rolling them back as Governor. If democracy is corrupted, the people have no power.


Read More About This Topic in Kathleen's Columns


2007-05-04 AT&T and Cable Competition: Here is The Rest of the Story

2012-11-10 Creating a Culture of Civility

2008-03-19 Playing the Game of "Gotcha"

2013-12-03 Changes in Committee Workings Limit Public Input

2009-01-05 Get Involved!

2014-03-19 Lobbyists and Corporations 2; Voters 0

2009-06-10 Change the Culture in the Capitol

2014-07-02 Money in Politics: What Can a Person Do?

2010-02-03 Playing Hardball with Your Friends

2014-10-29 Voting? No Photo ID Required, Yet

2010-04-14 Relationship Management: Whipping Legislators into Line

2015-07-07 A Flurry of New Policy Slipped into Budget Committee

2010-04-21 In the Legislature - as on the Highway - Speed Kills

2015-09-30 Audit Bureau Turns 50, Receives National Recognition and Calls for its Demise

2010-12-08 What Can You Do About Those Nasty Campaign Ads

2015-10-07 How Dismantling Civil Service is Happening in Wisconsin One Step at a Time

2011-02-15 Smaller Government Equals One Man Rule?

2015-10-20 Vos Bill Opens Door on "Dark Money" in Campaigns

2011-02-22 Live From an Undisclosed Location

2015-10-28 Don't Kill the Referee

2011-03-02 Killing the Goose that Lays the Golden Egg

2015-11-11 Friday Night in Madison

2011-03-15 What the People Want

2016-03-30 The Voting Window is Quickly Closing

2011-07-20 Voters Question New District Maps

2017-09-27  Two Worlds Apart: The Capitol and the Great River Road

2011-12-22 Looking Forward: Wisconsin in 2012

2018-03-28 Why I am Voting “No” on Eliminating the State Treasurer