Wisconsin Watch is a nonprofit and nonpartisan newsroom. Subscribe to our our newsletter to get our investigative stories and Friday news roundup.
As Gov. Tony Evers delivered his second State of the State address to lawmakers Wednesday, I positioned myself to the right of the Democrat’s podium, squeezing between a television camera and a cold marble wall.
Most members of the press arrived a few hours before the 7 p.m. speech to claim a perch. Mine offered a side view of the governor and a front-row view of the Legislature. Once there, I could not move for the duration of the speech in which Evers proposed to aid struggling dairy farmers and create a commission to redraw political maps free of gerrymandering.
As members of the Assembly and Senate entered the room, many hugged or shook hands with State Treasurer Sarah Godlewski, Attorney General Josh Kaul and State Superintendent Carolyn Stanford Taylor. They sat about eight inches in front of me. Republicans and Democrats hugged and glad-handed across the aisle at a time when they are struggling to find common ground in addressing Wisconsin’s biggest challenges.
I looked for moments that captured the spirit of the pomp and circumstance of the event and any camaraderie between all those lawmakers gathered in one place.
Here is what I saw.
The nonprofit Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism (wisconsinwatch.org) collaborates with Wisconsin Public Radio, PBS Wisconsin, other news media and the UW-Madison School of Journalism and Mass Communication. All works created, published, posted or disseminated by the Center do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of UW-Madison or any of its affiliates.
Republish our articles for free, online or in print, under a Creative Commons license.
Scroll down to copy and paste the code of our article into your CMS. The codes for images, graphics and other embeddable elements may not transfer exactly as they appear on our site.
You are welcome to republish our articles for free using the following ground rules.
Credit should be given, in this format: “By Dee J. Hall, Wisconsin Watch”
Coburn Dukehart is an Associate Director at Wisconsin Watch. She joined the organization in 2015 as the Digital and Multimedia Director. She is currently head of product and audience, directs visual and digital strategy; creates visual content; manages digital assets and trains student and professional journalists. Dukehart previously was a senior photo editor at National Geographic, picture and multimedia editor at NPR, and a photo editor at USATODAY.com and washingtonpost.com. She has received numerous awards from the Milwaukee Press Club, National Press Photographers Association, Pictures of the Year International and the White House News Photographers Association.