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Wednesday, July 17, 2024

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Trump running mate Vance to deliver 'the most important speech' of his career at Republican convention tonight; Alabama group receives grant to boost FAFSA submissions; Bilingual, multicultural staff needed for NJ addiction treatment; Toledo plant to manufacture EVs with federal funding.

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The Republican National Convention connects crime to migration. Kari Lake and delegates from Texas, Florida, and California talk about border issues. Desantis pokes fun at President Biden and Nikki Haley gives the night's big speech.

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It's grass-cutting season and with it, rural lawn mower races, Montana's drive-thru blood project is easing shortages, rural Americans spend more on food when transportation costs are tallied and a lack of good childcare is thwarting rural business owners.

WI organizer: Trump verdict shows key institutions can still function

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Friday, May 31, 2024   

On the heels of Donald Trump's felony convictions Thursday, a civic-engagement organizer in Wisconsin says the court process that unfolded provides relief to those who worry about institutional norms holding strong during turbulent political times.

The former president was found guilty on 34 felony counts related to his hush-money trial in New York. The case drew new attention to concerns that Trump and his supporters would try to undermine the legal process as he seeks to reclaim the White House this year.

Bob Maline, a campaign leader and board member for Grassroots Organizing Western Wisconsin, said that because the case reached a conclusion, it's a sign the legal system still works.

"Our institutions are so dependent on trust, and that feels like it has been under attack," he said. "I really do think just completing this trial in a professional manner - almost under circus conditions - I think that is a little bit of a triumph."

Maline said he hopes the democratic process will equally hold strong, as Trump is expected to use the verdict as a rallying cry when he campaigns this summer. He noted that local election leaders are strong individuals who can handle the extra pressure.

Former Republican Gov. Tommy Thompson told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel the trial was a political vendetta against Trump, and predicted that the outcome will be overturned on appeal. Thompson also predicted the outcome will lead to more hyper-partisanship.

For voters who end up in heated personal discussions over the verdict, Maline said, it's best to maintain a steady and respectful course.

"Learn more about what your conversation partner is thinking," he said. "Show that respect, make them feel heard. Don't give up a thing in your beliefs, but listen to them; that is my real advice."

The heightened rhetoric could play out on a greater scale in Wisconsin, which is expected to again be a battleground state in the 2024 election. And Trump's sentencing is scheduled for July 11, just a few days before the Republican National Convention gets underway in Milwaukee.

Support for this reporting was provided by the Carnegie Corporation of New York.


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