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On the record with Sarah Godlewski: An NBC 26 exclusive interview

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Posted at 6:20 PM, Jul 20, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-20 22:59:59-04

GREEN BAY (NBC 26) — In an NBC 26 exclusive interview, Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate Sarah Godlewski shared how she would address issues impacting Wisconsin residents if elected.

“I’m a proud fifth-generation Wisconsinite from Eau Claire," Godlewski said.

She is a Wisconsinite with a lengthy political career. Godlewski advised the Pentagon for nearly a decade, working in national security and foreign affairs before transitioning into finance. More recently, Godlewski been serving as state treasurer since she was elected in 2018.

“I lead a $1.3 billion investment fund and those funds actually benefit our schools," Godlewski said. "During the pandemic, I was actually able to provide a special distribution for our schools to buy hot spots, and e-learning books and really address the digital divide.”

Godlewski toured the YWCA of Greater Green Bay Wednesday morning. She met with child care leaders to discuss the current landscape.

“One of the things I think is so challenging is we’re not actually sufficiently providing funds for our child care centers," Godlewski said. "This is a critical industry for our communities, because if you don’t have child care providers, you can’t participate in the workforce.”

When looking at inflation and the high cost of gas, Godlewski said she'd like to see the 18.4 cent federal gas tax suspended. In addition, she said she wants to hold fossil fuel companies accountable.

“One [issue] is closing the fossil fuel tax loop hole. They’re getting anywhere between $2 to $20 billion a year in tax subsidies. That money should be going back to working families," Godlewski said.

And with the mass shootings we've seen across the country, Godlewski would push for "common sense gun reform," she said, if elected to a U.S. Senate seat.

“We need better background checks and we need to close these loop holes. We need national red flag laws, because we don’t want a domestic abuser to have a gun," Godlewski said. "And finally, I do not believe we need weapons of war in our communities."

Godlewski said she knows these type of gun reform proposals could require her to meet those on the other side of the aisle in the middle.

“You’ve got to come to the table. You’ve got to listen and actually participate in these conversations," Godlewski said. "That’s what I’d been doing when I was supporting and working for the Pentagon, was coming together. That’s what I’ve been doing as state treasurer, was coming to the table and talking about bipartisan ways we can work together. And I plan on doing the same thing when it comes to gun safety legislation.”

But as someone who's pro-choice, Godlewski said abortion access is one thing she's not willing to compromise on.

“While I’ve always been pragmatic, and will always be pragmatic, for me right now, my focus is on making sure women get back this right to choose, because it’s a fundamental right that’s been taken away," Godlewski said. "I would pass the Women’s Health Protection Act, which is [U.S. Senator] Tammy Baldwin’s act, that would actually make Roe v. Wade the law of the land. We don’t have enough pro-choice Democratic women at that U.S. Senate table. It’s one of the reasons I’m running, is because women’s rights will never be an afterthought for me.”

Godlewski said she's also passionate about protecting Wisconsin's lakes from pollution. She said Congress needs to take a "better stance" to keep the state's water clean and would push to regulate PFAS.

The primary election is August 9. The winner of that election will likely face Sen. Ron Johnson, (R) Wisconsin, in the November general election.