Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald


Falk returns to campaign trail

After two unsuccessful campaigns for other state offices,
Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk announced Wednesday she will be running for

“When I think about all we’ve gotten done over the past 12
years, I can’t wait to get started on the next chapter,” Falk said.

Democratic Gov. Jim Doyle said he was surprised that Falk is
seeking a fourth term in local government.


“Frankly for me, it’s a little unexpected,” Doyle said. “But
I won’t get into that.”

When asked if this announcement was a promise that she would
not run for a higher position in state government, Falk said she could not make
that promise because she would not make promises she cannot keep.

Standing behind her, Doyle asked her to not make that

While she did not promise she would not run for another
office, Falk said she does not view her position as a stepping-stone and that
she has worked “24/7 for 14 years.”

Falk was first elected in 1997 and has served three terms so
far. In 2002, she ran for governor against Doyle and Tom Barrett. In 2006, she
ran for Attorney General of Wisconsin and lost to J.B. Van Hollen by a close

In her bid for attorney general, Falk won the Democratic
primary, defeating incumbent Peg Lautenschlager, who was the topic of
controversy when she pleaded guilty to drunken driving charges in 2004.

Falk announced she would be launching initiatives on alcohol
abuse in the next couple weeks, calling drinking a serious problem in Dane

“There is life-saving work that needs to be done in the area
of alcohol abuse,” Falk said. “Our cultural tolerance for the excessive use of
alcohol endangers individual lives and our entire community.”

Over the past few months, Falk and her office faced
criticism after the Dane County 911 dispatch center mishandled a phone call
from the cell phone of UW junior Brittany Zimmermann on the day of her

During her speech, Falk said she has focused on safety
throughout her time in office and added 128 new staff to the sheriff’s

Falk also said she thinks Dane County can become a “producer
rather than a consumer of energy,” turning waste products into energy sources.

“Kathleen has really devoted herself to making sure that
everybody in Dane County has an opportunity to be able to move forward and live
a good life,” Doyle said.

Currently, Falk has no challenger but she said she will “run
strong and run hard.”

Dane County Board Chairman Scott McDonell and former Dane
County Executive Jonathan Barry reportedly considered running if Falk decided
she would not. 

“I am inspired daily by the half million Dane County
citizens who want a better future for all our people and this place we love,”
Falk said. “I ask for your support.”

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