TUE AM News: Kaiser CEO doesn’t expect health care to drive voter turnout; Meeting in Middle America highlights bipartisan legislative effort

— Drew Altman, president and CEO of the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation, says that health is the largest issue for voters in Wisconsin, but doesn’t expect it to drive turnout on election day. 

“Our issue is the number one issue, but we also exaggerate the importance of that in the election; the media absolutely exaggerates it,” Altman told attendees yesterday at the La Follette Health Policy Forum in Madison. 

“The ‘health care election’ isn’t really a health care election, because the thing to keep in mind is that the number one issue is not the number one factor that drives people to vote,” he said. 

A series of KFF polls found 49 percent of Democrats said that healthcare is the most important issue — a record high according to Altman — while only about 6 percent said it’s their reason to vote.

Wisconsin was included in the polls and results were about the same for Wisconsin alone, Altman said.

Meanwhile, 41 percent of Dems said their main reason to vote is to get President Trump out of office.

“Democrats said that their big thing that really drives their vote is getting rid of Trump; for Democrats, Independents and Republicans, the voting factor was Trump,” he said. “For Democrats it was getting rid of him and for Republicans it was keeping him.” 

Altman was the morning keynote speaker for the La Follette Health Policy Forum yesterday. He is also the publisher of KFF’s Kaiser Health News.

His remarks on the role of health in politics followed a presentation on health trends over the past decade, including how the topic became “the poster child of the partisan divide.” Altman specifically referenced the Affordable Care Act. 

See more: http://www.wisbusiness.com/2020/kaiser-ceo-doesnt-expect-health-care-to-drive-voter-turnout/ 

— The latest episode of “Meeting in Middle America” features Rep. Jonathan Brostoff, a Democratic lawmaker from Milwaukee. 

The show’s host, Millennial Action Project founder Steven Olikara, interviews him on an unorthodox strategy Brostoff used to instigate legislative change in the state. Their conversation also touches on the current political landscape in Wisconsin and how reaching across the aisle helped drive bipartisan support for the effort. 

“We’re going to talk with him about an unprecedented journey that he’s been on over the last year, to pass a bipartisan bill that’s helping the deaf community,” Olikara said. “He’s a great example of what you can achieve in public service.” 

The podcast is recorded and produced at UW-Milwaukee Lubar Entrepreneurship Center in partnership with WisPolitics.com and WisBusiness.com. WAGET and Bridge&Build are sponsors. 

Find the audio version of the show at Apple Podcasts and Spotify, and watch the latest episode here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VuYu0E7vDpo 

— A group of LGBTQ and women-owned companies has formed the Milwaukee 2020 Marketing Collective, aimed at helping other businesses boost their exposure during this summer’s Democratic National Convention. 

“We want to help businesses take advantage of the audience of 50,000 plus convention members and native Milwaukeeans in the most effective ways possible, elevating their brand and business goals,” said Brainchild Studios owner and CEO Kiley Peters. 

Founding businesses include Mueller Communications, Seadog Creative, Swarmm Events, Brainchild Studios and Bublr Bikes. The new collective will bring together services including event management, public relations, advertising, digital marketing as well as video and photography. 

According to a release, these companies are collaborating with a goal of promoting “values of inclusion and equity integral to the Democratic National Convention’s core message.” 

See more: http://mke2020marketing.com/ 

— The latest round of the Water Council’s Tech Challenge is seeking innovative solutions for detecting leaks in systems and harvesting energy from water networks. 

The competition provides R&D funding and corporate support for ideas with “a high potential for commercialization or implementation.” That covers complete systems as well as earlier-stage algorithms or concepts emphasizing optimization of existing processes. 

The maximum total prize funding is $25,000 for this round. Proposals can come from university students or researchers, entrepreneurs, water industry professionals as well as public or private laboratories. 

Each round focuses on specific water industry problems to solve, and more than 40 applicants from nine countries have participated since the contest was launched in 2018. Applications are being accepted through May 3. 

See more competition details: http://watertechhub.com/challenge/spring-2020-tech-challenge/ 

See the release: http://thewatercouncil.com/media/newsroom/news/the-water-council-and-supporting-sponsors-announce-third-tech-challenge-competition/ 

— Longtime UW Stevens Point Chancellor Bernie Patterson has announced his retirement. 

Patterson said he will step down in December to give the UW System enough time to find a successor. He has spent more than 40 years working in higher education and has served as chancellor since the summer of 2010.

In a statement, UW System Regent President Andrew Petersen praised Patterson for his “record-breaking fundraising efforts and being relentless in efforts to bring stability in the face of enrollment challenges.”

Patterson and other UWSP administrators in 2018 notably proposed cutting 13 majors, including English and political science, to reduce a $4.5 million deficit. But the proposal was ultimately nixed after sharp criticism from students and faculty.

He is the fourth UW System chancellor to resign in the last five years.

See more: http://www.uwsp.edu/ucm/news/Pages/BPannouncement20.aspx

— The Medical College of Wisconsin is expanding its Wausau campus, which was opened in 2016 with a goal of addressing physician shortages in the state. 

“The expansion of this campus is a key milestone that demonstrates the power of collaboration,” said John Raymond, president and CEO of MCW. “This new space will enable us to develop future doctors for north central Wisconsin.” 

The college’s other regional campus is located in Green Bay. The MCW-Central Wisconsin space was purchased from Aspirus, according to a release. The new campus will be located across the street from Aspirus Wausau Hospital. 

MCW-Central Wisconsin currently has 76 students enrolled. 



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