Isiah Holmes, Wisconsin Examiner
As he transitions out of the Legislature, Rep. David Bowen (D-Milwaukee) is making a bid for Milwaukee’s 1st Aldermanic District. The district is one of five vacant common council seats in the city of Milwaukee. On Feb. 21, 2023 the city will hold a special election to fill the 1st, 5th, and 9th districts which are all vacant. Candidates have been able to circulate nomination papers since Nov. 28. Bowen put in his own bid just before Christmas.
“Serving honorably in public office has been one of the highest honors of my life,” said Bowen in a press release. “Following my departure from the state legislature, the outpouring of encouragement to continue to serve the residents of Wisconsin has been both valuable and overwhelming. After much reflection, prayer, and counsel, I am honored to bring my passion and experience to the 1st Aldermanic District race.”
Bowen has served in Wisconsin’s government for over a decade. As a member of the Wisconsin Assembly he advocated for increasing shared revenue for Milwaukee, gun control and criminal justice reforms. Bowen co-authored a package of police reform policies called the “enough is enough” bills of 2021 which would have instituted independent police shooting investigations, created annual use-of-force reporting standards and addressed toxic “warrior culture” in law enforcement. Bowen also joined the crowds of protesters who took to the streets calling for police accountability in 2020.
Milwaukee is facing “critical challenges,” said Bowen in his press release, “possibly the most challenging in Milwaukee’s history.” He cited public safety concerns, a lack of equitable economic opportunities and a dearth of quality housing.
“And our challenges with the city budget, due in part to a continuous lack of state support, continue to threaten Milwaukee’s future,” he added. “If Milwaukee fails, the state of Wisconsin fails. If Milwaukee grows its tax base, the state of Wisconsin grows its tax collection.” Bowen, a Milwaukee native who lives in the Rufus King neighborhood, says he’s already met with hundreds of locals, gathering support for the spring election.
This story was written by Isiah Holmes, a reporter for the Wisconsin Examiner, where this story first appeared.
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