In Madison, the influx of poor people from Chicago is testing the city’s historical liberalism. About one-quarter of the 3,300 Madison families receiving welfare are former Illinois residents.
Even Mayor Paul Soglin, who earned his liberal stripes in the anti-establishment politics of the 1960s as a Vietnam War protester, now talks of “finite limits of resources” for the poor.
“We’re like a lifeboat that holds 12 people comfortably,” Mr. Soglin said. “We’ve got about 16 in it now, and there’s a dozen more waiting in the water. Since we’re already in danger of going under, what can our community be expected to do?”
A vibrant economy in Wisconsin accounts for much of the migration among poor people, most of them looking for jobs. The state’s unemployment rate has dipped below 4 percent while that in Illinois is 4.4 percent.
my correspondent notes:
Here is an interesting article from 1995. Worth revisiting with Soglin back in office (just because he is the mayor quoted at the time), but mostly as it pertains to our discussions around Madison Prep. What are the unique attributes and qualities that make up both our white population and our minority population?