MADISON (WKOW) -- As bratwurst cookouts and religious sermons search for political middle ground in the wake of Wisconsin's contentious recall elections, there are still signs the deep divide in the public square will only slowly dissipate.
A one-story high sign proclaiming Governor Walker as "morally bankrupt" remains on Tom Link's historic Bellevue building in downtown Madison.
Link said voter support for the governor in the recall race leaves him unmoved toward conciliation, when he reflects on the make-up of some of Walker's campaign donors.
"It's out of control. A few multi-millionaires, and billionaires are controlling the dialogue."
But Link told 27 News he accepts a more civil, political tone is a laudable goal.
To that end, more than two hundred members of the clergy in the state have lent their names to an interfaith initiative to promote civility in congregations on matters of political differences.
Reverend Scott Anderson of the Wisconsin Council of Churches said there's a yearning among clergy for such direction, after watching political rifts intensify.
"Families in their congregations were divided. (They) Couldn't even talk to each other."
Anderson said the civility effort will culminate with workshops to help clergy members provide alternatives to congregations in approaching discussion of red-hot political issues.
Anderson said workshops will be timed to brief clergy members before November's elections.
Walker himself prioritized political healing when he hosted both republican and democratic leaders at the state's executive residence in what was dubbed a "brat summit" to foster discussion.
Link said his insistence on maintaining a sign of protest is begrudging.
"I wish I could say, 'Well, I'll take it down, we're starting to turn a new page.' "
But Link said political healing steps to-date are still outweighed by the effects of Walker's continuing policies.
Link did remove the unflattering poster about Walker last year from a higher perch on his apartment building, but only after city officials said its display more than fifteen feet above the ground violated code. Link relocated the protest sign to the building's ground floor.
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