Barrett, Walker exchange barbs

    Gubernatorial hopefuls Tom Barrett and Scott Walker exchanged verbal shots this week over Milwaukee County’s Mental Health Complex and Walker’s annual Harley ride.
    Barrett, appearing in Madison, questioned the timing of Walker’s annual ride to promote Milwaukee County, noting it coincides closely with the Republican Party of Wisconsin’s state convention, which starts next May 21 in Milwaukee. Barrett said the ride seemed designed to promote Walker, rather than Milwaukee County.
    Walker chief of staff Tom Nardelli countered that the ride reaps benefits for the company and the county.|
    Barrett also ripped Walker for problems at the county complex, saying the situation was caused by "a decision by the Walker administration to put women in harm’s way."
    The criticism followed reports of sexual assaults at the facility.
    Walker campaign spokeswoman Jill Bader shot back that Barrett was putting politics ahead of care for mental health patients, saying that every public psychiatric hospital in the state has mixed gender units.

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