Although the foundation of my own campaign was “Bold Ideas, Conservative Values” not “Republican Ideas,” as a new legislator who came into office post-Act 10, I was excited and proud that the Republican party in Wisconsin woke up, finally began to tell their story, and took on the opposition – with real common sense solutions.

But where has this new brand of conservative, Wisconsin GOP gone over the past few years? I get it, it’s an election year, but last year wasn’t. Why have we given up on our base? Do we really expect that they’ll just show up? One would think that the GOP would learn from history and realize that the bold ideas and common sense stories must continue to be pushed if they expect to remain at the helm.

Actions speak louder than words.

While we do have some outstanding accomplishments over the past few years, Wisconsin Republicans, who typically had the backs of those who have no voice, have failed aborted children for two sessions and continue to allow the trafficking of their body parts. Wisconsin Republicans have had zero appetite to protect our young school girls from changing in shower rooms and locker rooms with other students who have male body parts. While the GOP Assembly passed the toughest protections for 1st amendment freedom of expression on our taxpayer-funded universities, the GOP Senate flatly rejected to protect college students’ constitutional rights. The Assembly dropped the ball on Federalism and have little to no desire to push, or even ask, the EPA for permission to remove outdated, unscientific Clinton, Bush and Obama era air initiatives; even with a Republican administration in Washington ready to drain the swamp.

And finally, there is the issue of school safety. While the voters, and my constituents “get it,” the mainstream party and leadership in Madison doesn’t have the appetite to do everything that they possibly can to prevent terrorism in our schools.

While a few of Governor Scott Walker’s school security bills will be useful and effective, we are not doing everything that we possibly can to effectively protect our students – especially those in parochial and small rural public schools. Why can’t the GOP allow local control regarding school security?

Let parents and school boards decide how best to protect their own kids – not big brother Madison; especially private and parochial schools that are on PRIVATE property. Allow parents and school boards to decide if an armed guard, beefed up doors, or even armed, trained, volunteer personnel are the answer.

While we should continue to address mental health, we are letting our guard down on another reality of life – that small Christian and Jewish schools are real-life terrorist targets. Yes, we secured airliners after 9/11, but how? We now have armed security on some aircraft and a volunteer, well-trained, armed pilot corps. The $100 million funding bill will run out in the very near future and set up public school districts for tax increases or small private schools for massive tuition increases if they choose to retain hired security personnel.

It is time for Wisconsin Republicans to wake up and realize that we need to continue telling our stories and discussing real common sense fixes.

State Rep. Jesse Kremer (R – Kewaskum) represents the 59th Assembly District.
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