Trump’s Wisconsin Judicial Nominee, Lead Pipe Replacement Funding, Wisconsin Fairs And Agriculture

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Lead water lines have become a concern for communities across the country and are costly to replace. We hear why funding to replace lead pipes in Wisconsin is in jeopardy. President Trump’s nominee for an appellate court seat in Wisconsin is receiving pushback for remarks that her religious beliefs may supersede U.S. law. A legal expert is with us to discuss the controversy. Agriculture has long been a key component to Wisconsin’s county fairs. We learn how agriculture and education helped the fair develop into the institution it is today.

Featured in this Show

  • Progressive Group Calls For Trump To Withdraw Nominee For Wisconsin Circuit Court Vacancy

    A progressive legal watchdog group, has called on the Trump administration to withdraw its nominee, Amy Coney Barret, for a Wisconsin vacancy on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. We’ll talk to a judicial expert about why some think she would put personal views before the law.

  • Effort To Remove Lead Water Lines An Uphill Battle

    Lead water lines continue to be a growing concern in communities all over Wisconsin. We check in on how the Wisconsin DNR is assisting with such a large-scale problem.

  • The Agricultural Component And History Of Fairs In Wisconsin

    The smell of cream puffs is in the air, which means it’s fair season in Wisconsin! To many people fairs mean rides, musical acts, and fun fried foods. But there’s another big component to these fairs: agriculture. We talk to an educator about the role agriculture plays in Wisconsin’s fairs, now and throughout history.

  • Fried Foods? Rides? Yes, But Agriculture Will Forever Make A Fair A Fair

    The Wisconsin State Fairs kicks off Thursday, which means 11 days of rides, cream puffs, fried food, animals and so much more.

    Fairs aren’t anything new to the state of Wisconsin. Like many Midwestern states, Wisconsin is known for its summertime county fairs and its state fair.

    The first Wisconsin State Fair was held in 1851 in Janesville, sponsored by the state agriculture society and lasted two days.

    Eight years later, Abraham Lincoln was invited to the Wisconsin State Fair on what is now the Marquette University campus in Milwaukee. There, he gave a speech on the value of agricultural fairs and how they unite people and allow farmers from across the state to talk shop, said Leigh Presley, University of Wisconsin-Extension agriculture educator for Racine and Kenosha counties.

    Lincoln would run as a Republican for president the following year. The state fair found its permanent home in West Allis in 1982.

    Today, people may go to the fair for the Ferris wheel, music, fried delicacies and the famous Wisconsin cream puffs. But in state and county fairs’ early days, people went to learn about the newest farming technology.

    Because the rural population lived in more isolated locations than today and lacked speedy modes of transportation in the 19th and early 20th centuries, fairs were a way for farmers to come together and learn about new techniques and machinery, Presley said.

    4-H, a nonprofit organization prominent at fairs and embedded in the lives of thousands of children year-round, is a bit part of that and has a history that starts with youth in agriculture.

    The organization began in the 1800s when researchers discovered that unlike adults, younger people in farming communities were more open to new agricultural technology and would share new ways of doing things with their families, according to the 4-H website.

    Wisconsin 4-H celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2014 with events across the state. The first and oldest 4-H club in Wisconsin is the Linn 4-H club.

    Although fairs of today have shifted some of the focus away from agriculture and toward attracting anyone looking for fun, agriculture is still what makes a fair a fair, Presley said.

    “It’s kind of what sets a fair apart from other carnivals and festivals. They all have music and food, but (fairs) give you an opportunity to make a connection with the rural population, make that connection with people that are actually on the ground farming,” Presley said.

Episode Credits

  • Veronica Rueckert Host
  • Haleema Shah Producer
  • Karl Christenson Producer
  • Amanda Magnus Producer
  • Ryan Owens Guest
  • Scott Gordon Guest
  • Leigh Presley Guest