Legislative Update: Senate elects leadership

With elections over, Senate elects caucus leadership.

The Senate Democrats and the Republicans have elected caucus leadership.

Senate Republicans:

  • Majority Leader – Sen. Scott Fitzgerald
  • Assistant Majority Leader – Sen. Dan Feyen
  • Senate President – Sen. Roger Roth
  • Senate President Pro Tempore – Sen. Howard Marklein
  • Caucus Chair – Sen. Van Wanggaard
  • Caucus Vice Char – Sen. Patrick Testin

Senate Democrats elected to leadership:

  • Minority Leader – Sen. Jennifer Shilling
  • Assistant Minority Leader – Sen. Janet Bewley
  • Caucus Chair – Sen. Mark Miller
  • Caucus Vice-Chair – Sen. Janis Ringhand

The Assembly caucuses will meet next week to elect leadership beginning Monday. Also Monday, the Legislature will begin an extraordinary session, led by Sen. Alberta Darling. The extraordinary session is said to focus on the Kimberly-Clark bill, which will receive a Joint Finance Committee hearing Tuesday. The bill is expected to be on the Senate floor the last week of November.

Sen. Fitzgerald has said Republicans are looking at additional bills to make some changes to the governor’s authorities, including administrative rules, and those bills would be on the Senate floor the first week of December, but declined to specify what exactly those bills would address. He did say that one issue may be photo ID, and hinted about board appointments (specifically at the Wisconsin Economic Development Commission) and the need for equal representation. Fitzgerald told insiders that during the campaign Governor-Elect Tony Evers discussed dismantling the WEDC and returning to a Department of Commerce, and Fitzgerald hoped to guard the Legislature against drastic changes.

Fitzgerald is indicating that he is willing to sit down with Evers to find common ground, although they would have to come to consensus on education and transportation. It’s expected the JFC may work off of base during the budget process.

Fitzgerald said that he doesn’t expect big change to Senate committees, other than filling former Sen. Leah Vukmir’s seat, given her election loss to WEAC-recommended candidate U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin.