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“I’m hearing that Peter Barca is considering running against Bryan Steil. That would be a mistake.” —Kenosha County Sheriff, David W. Zoerner

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Sheriff David W. Zoerner (R) At Kenosha County Law Enforcement Round Table
(File Photo by Kevin Mathewson, Kenosha County Eye)

Kenosha County Sheriff David W. Zoerner (R) didn’t mince words today during a video message to residents about Peter Barca’s recent announcement of a congressional bid. “I’m hearing that [Barca] is considering running against Bryan Steil,” said Zoerner. “That would be a mistake.”

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Sheriff Zoerner, who just returned to Kenosha County after a brief trip to the southern border, was joined by other local Sheriffs. Zoerner said that he went to the Mexico/USA border “to witness the crisis that’s affecting our community firsthand.”

Peter Barca (D) – Career Politician

Zoerner continued, “Folks, in 2016 Peter Barca, he fought hard to defeat a bill that would ban sanctuary cities in Wisconsin. Sanctuary cities threaten the safety of our community. Peter Barca’s out-of-touch position means he doesn’t take the safety of our community seriously. Your kids and mine.” Zoerner went on to praise Steil for being in “constant communication” with law enforcement.

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Zoerner wrapped up the short speech – “Kenosha and the first congressional district need Brian Steil in congress – not open borders politicians like Peter Barca. Thank you.”

Barca, 68, of Kenosha, was elected to the state assembly in 1985, when this author was not yet one year old. He held that seat until 1993. He then was elected to congress in 1993 and held the seat for two years. After Barca narrowly lost his re-election bid, President Clinton appointed him to serve as Midwest Regional Administrator to the U.S. Small Business Administration. He was later again elected as a member of the state assembly from 2009 to 2019 – seven of those years as the minority leader.

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In January of 2019, Barca worked as Wisconsin’s Secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Revenue. Late last month, Barca announced his resignation as DOR Secretary and his intention to challenge Republican Congressman Bryan Steil.

Barca didn’t respond to KCE’s request for comment.

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“Hey everyone, it’s Kenosha County Sheriff David Zoerner. I just finished visiting the southern border with other local sheriffs to witness the crisis that’s affecting our community firsthand. I’m hearing that Peter Barca is considering running against Brian Steil. That would be a mistake. Folks, in 2016 Peter Barca, he fought hard to defeat a bill that would ban sanctuary cities in Wisconsin. Sanctuary cities threaten the safety of our community. Peter Barca’s out-of-touch position means he doesn’t take the safety of our community seriously. Your kids and mine. As Sheriff I’ve seen firsthand that the crisis at the southern border, what it is, and how it’s causing real challenges to Kenosha County, and our families. Brian Steil is always looking out for Kenosha. He’s in constant communication with myself and other local officials supporting policies in Congress to keep our community safe. Kenosha, and the first congressional district needs Brian Steil in congress – not open borders politicians like Peter Barca. Thank you.”

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54 Responses

  1. As someone that grew up less than 5 miles from the Mexican border (Tijuana) I feel I have the insight to look at our current border issues with better knowledge than the average Kenosha resident. I grew up watching illegal migrants walk up my street in an attempt to reach the expressway. The maternity Wards at numerous hospitals closed because illegals would come and deliver their babies and then they couldn’t be deported. I absolutely understand the desire for a better life but doing it outside the law is absolutely wrong. I have numerous friends that immigrated legally and all of them are opposed to open borders.

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  2. When the Republicans were in power why did they fix the problem?
    When a Democrats were in power why did they fix the problem?
    It’s all about money. Money for their campaigns. Don’t be fooled. They will never fix the problem.
    And Mr sheriff I just look at things equally. When you make statements like that you’re part of the problem…

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    1. Yes, I thought Dave was better than that. We have major issues in Kenosha County that need work.

      Pandering for votes makes me a bit sorry I voted for Dave.

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  3. A tail was added as a warm body to just “parrot” whatever they tell him. He has no ideas of his own. He’s all just talk. If the Repub side is so afraid of losing spots, then maybe pick people that actually work for the people.

    Nobody wants to hear trickle down messages from crazy Trump. They actually want representation. Pick better candidates or lose.

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  4. How old is Barca?
    Why do these career politicians always go way past their expiration date?
    That is the question that needs to be examined. Barca needs to be put out to pasture.

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  5. Paul Ryan, JR. needs to go, but Barca ain’t it.

    Stop hoping for things to change and improve while electing the same shit.

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    1. Electing the same s*** would be electing Peter Barker, and Steil is a vast improvement over party traitor Paul Ryan.

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  6. I’ll bet the Skank & Defile at Local 72, led by Comrade Curt and Spew Drew are all giddy about the possibility of Barca running for Congress.

  7. Peter Barca.
    A lifelong government employee.
    First in teaching and education.
    Then soon thereafter politics.
    To this day.

    At 68, not exactly out to pasture but,
    could take this juncture to mentor a younger version of himself. It would add to his legacy.

    Peter. If you want to still be involved, then Step back and help others. You know how to do that.

    It can’t be about a paycheck. Is it ?

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  8. My husband came over from Canada on a work visa, I did not marry him until he received his permanent visa. The company he still works for spoored him. He had to go through physicals, background checks numerous paperwork and red tape. He paid his attorney 20 grand when it was said and done. It took him 20 years to became a US citizen, which his swearing in ceremony was this past summer. He FINALLY got to vote for the first time in our primaries this last Tuesday, he is a common sense voter, so you can guess which party got a new voter . My husband and millions of others have been done wrong by Biden’s open borders. We ALL will be and are affected by it. Sanctuary cities is just WRONG and dangerous. If they only reported the truth osfhow much sexual assault to kids, robbery and murders nationwide by illegals, it would be staggering, but no they hide all the honest facts just as they do with everything else. Sad state our country is.

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  9. Barca is nonetheless a viable opponent to Steil who has no real accomplishments in Congress. And if you want to blame someone for the immigration problem, you’ll have to attack both sides because the last time an immigration bill to speak of was passed was in 1986.

    1986.

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    1. A new immigration bill is not the solution. Border Control is. Open Borders are the Problem. Santuary City Status is an encouragement for lawless border hoping. ‘Sanctuary City Barca’ is part of that Problem.

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    2. Complete BS, and you are just parenting the latest serialized lie to be repeated over and over again by the Democrats who have no other answers on why they have spearheaded Biden’s attack on America’s security. The Democrats keep demanding a comprehensive border bill like that is some kind of magic potion. The one currently in effect is the current comprehensive border bill, and Biden simply ignores parts of it he does not like and destroys them with executive orders. Why would any intelligent person vote to put another one in effect for the Democrats to gloat over whatever they gained and still nullify any parts they didn’t like? Especially the most recent ridiculous legislation attempt, where the money for the border was a tiny part of the total package and wasn’t going to security at all, only two faster and larger acceptance of illegal migrants with a catch and release continuation that simply allowed them to stream in faster. The first thing Biden did when he took office was nullify everything Trump had done to help secure it, including stopping the wall building and squandering the money that had been spent on what they’re already was. Likewise, Trump had worked hard to get Mexico’s cooperation on not letting the people enter our country in the first place while turning them away at Mexico’s Southern border. Biden stop that and made us the laughing stock in Mexico once again. The solution is clear, vote for the Republican candidate who has a proven record of fighting for immigration integrity and a secure border.

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    3. …and Reagan realized only afterward that the Dems snookered him on that 1986 “comprehensive” immigration bill. It turned out to be nothing more than a blanket amnesty, the border enforcement provisions it promised were quickly ignored.
      Dems LOVE big, complicated, “comprehensive” bills. Thousands of pages. “We need to pass it to know what’s in it”, was Rep.
      Pelosi’s argument regarding ObamaCare. Remember that one? And every monstrous Omnibus spending bill passed in recent years as well. The bigger and more complicated the bill, the more the Dems like it…lots of legalease/weasel-words, pork, all contrived by slimey lobbyists stuffing politicians’ pockets.
      With the result being that we’re 35 TRILLION dollars in debt.
      Republicans are complicit in this too, make no mistake.
      But unless, until somebody changes this modus operandi, we’re all just screwed.
      Sooner rather than later.

      1. I worked on the 1986 IRCA with the Reagan Administration. He was not “snookered” and it was Republican Sen. Alan Simpson’s bill. Reagan had a “get legal or out” view. Congress enacted the Immigration Reform and Control Act (also known as the Simpson-Mazzoli Act or the Reagan Amnesty) and President Ronald Reagan signed it into law in November 1986. This act introduced civil and criminal penalties to employers who knowingly hired undocumented immigrants or individuals unauthorized to work in the U.S. However, the act also offered legalization, which led to lawful permanent residence (LPR) and prospective naturalization to undocumented migrants, who entered the country prior to 1982. Farm workers who could validate at least ninety days of employment also qualified for lawful permanent residency.

        U.S. law required qualified applicants, who had continuously resided in the U.S. since 1982, to apply within a one-year window, from May 1987 to May 1988, pay a fee, and provide extensive documentation, which included fingerprints, employment history, proof of continuous residency, and other documents. After 1986, U.S. law required hired employees to demonstrate work eligibility by filling out an I-9 form and submitting certifications of citizenship or work authorization. Applicants also had to complete interviews and medical examinations. Employers who failed to document 1-9 forms upon inspection were charged with warnings, fines, or criminal proceedings. The government was now authorized investigate employer discrimination against authorized immigrant workers, something Reagan was personally concerned about (“sweat shops”)/

        An estimated 3 million individuals—mostly of Hispanic descent—gained legal status through IRCA, securing economic and social opportunities as legal residents of the United States and gaining protection from deportation. In an effort to halt unlawful crossings and unauthorized workers, the IRCA also approved increased border security resources, including higher budgets for the Border Patrol and the Department of Labor.

        1. …my use of the word “Snookered”, at least where the President was concerned, was inappropriate regarding IRCA. The fact remains though that, due to a combination of ‘after-the-fact’ failures to execute, the thing never fully lived up to its objectives. Three million folks were granted amnesty.

          But the promise of a crackdown on U.S. employers’ hiring of illegals was rendered toothless. And the lure of employment in th USA would continue unabated.
          That has been, and will continue to be, what draws many.
          Many others, nowadays, are coming for the federal largesse available courtesy of the American taxpayer.
          This entire situation cannot end well.

    4. True enough.
      Barca is a viable challenger, though I suggest, a proven Democrat hack.
      A dutiful yes-man to whichever politician can keep him in a lucrative “appointment” when “in-between” elected office.
      Clinton, Antaraniam, Evers, whomever. Mr. Barca seems to be a decent man, not a creep. But I could never vote for anyone who can stand in ideological solidarity with “Tweedle-Dee and Tweedle-Dum”…Evers and Biden.
      They BOTH give me the creeps.
      I’ve watched Congressman Steil’s voting record pretty closely. And, with a few exceptions, I am satisfied with the manner in which he has been representing WI District 1.

      1. I wish I had the same confidence in Steil. He’s pretty much a rubber stamp with little or no independent thought. He’s not his grandpa.

  10. Barca has been out of politics for what, like 6 years? People’s memories are notoriously short when it comes to politicians. Plus, he’s 68 years old. People under 40 have no idea who he is. Didn’t the Kenosha County Dems learn their lesson with Lydia? They have got to stop trying to resuscitate these fossils. Just let it go, boomers.

  11. Kenosha is tied for 15th as far as road deaths by county (in Wisconsin) for 2023. This is something Zoerner and his deputies CAN help with— however, they’re rarely out controlling traffic on the Kenosha County Racetracks. As I see in-home patients, I drive in Kenosha County every day, and driving down S from 31 to I-94 is hazardous, if you’re not doing 65-70+. 31 is a disaster- some people doing ~40MPH, others racing by at outrageous speeds.

    Twice a week, I drive I-94 from Highway 20 to 165, and the only time I see KSD is if there is an accident— never just out doing prevention.

    When I drive past Kenosha County Center, I’ll see upwards of 10 squads just parked in the lot, deputies standing around talking.

    I’ve seen far too many speed-related traffic deaths happen while working in the ER. The phrase, “an ounce of prevention…” works well here, too…

    Zoerner, how about cutting down on the traffic occurrences in Kenosha, and easily funding your department WITHOUT BONDING, by having your deputies do their jobs.

    BTW- how many chases happen in Kenosha where PPPD can get ‘em, but not KSD?

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