Boots & Sabers

The blogging will continue until morale improves...

Category: Politics

Averagen Gas Prices Surge to $5.10 per Gallon

But… but… Putin or something.

CAMARILLO, Calif. — The average U.S. price of regular-grade gasoline spiked 39 cents over the past three weeks to $5.10 per gallon.

 

Industry analyst Trilby Lundberg of the Lundberg Survey said Sunday that the price jump comes amid higher crude oil costs and tight gasoline supplies.

 

The average price at the pump is $1.97 higher than it was one year ago.

When can we all admit that Democrats’ policies are crushing our economy? The only real question left is whether their policies are rooted in malice or stupidity.

Vaccines “Appear” to Be Safe for Small Kids

Yeah… no. The chances of a child under 5 getting very sick or dying from COVID is almost nothing. I’ll take those odds over a vaccine that “appears” to be safe and whose effects are not known after two years.

WASHINGTON — Federal health officials said Sunday that kid-sized doses of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccines appear to be safe and effective for kids under 5, a key step toward a long-awaited decision to begin vaccinating the youngest American children.

 

The Food and Drug Administration posted its analysis of the Pfizer shot ahead of a Wednesday meeting where outside experts will vote on whether the shots are ready for the nation’s 18 million babies, toddlers and preschoolers. Kids under 5 are the only group not yet eligible for COVID-19 vaccination in the U.S.

 

Late last week the FDA posted a similar analysis of Moderna’s shots for children under 6.

Trump’s endorsement changes GOP primary

Here is my full column that ran in the Washington County Daily News earlier this week

The long wait and speculation is over. Donald Trump has weighed in on the Republican primary for governor. Trump endorsed candidate Tim Michels saying, “Tim Michels is the best candidate to deliver meaningful solutions to these problems, and he will produce jobs like no one else can even imagine.” What does Trump’s endorsement mean for the election?

 

There is little doubt that Donald Trump still holds great sway in the Republican Party. Given his tremendous success as president and the legions of voters he attracted to the GOP, there are many Republican candidates who covet Trump’s endorsement. They covet it with good reason. Trump’s endorsement has the power to raise marginal candidates to be viable and to give a candidate enough support to win in a tight race. Trump’s endorsed candidates have a remarkable record of winning, but there are a couple of facts to keep in mind with that record. First, Trump has many positive qualities, but they come with some deep personal flaws. He is as narcissistic as they come and he wants to win. This has led him to endorse several candidates who were already going to win handily. This character flaw has also led him to endorse losing candidates because of personal grudges (Georgia). It also leads him to sometimes endorse the candidate that he thinks is going to win instead of who might actually be the best person for the job.

 

This leads us to the second fact to bear in mind with Trump endorsements. Trump’s passion to win trumps any ideology. His endorsements do not necessarily mean that the endorsee is conservative. For example, Dr. Mehmet Oz has a long-standing history of supporting gun control and big government healthcare, but he squeaked out a win in Pennsylvania over a proven conservative after Trump endorsed him. These are issues that loom large in the next Congress and Oz may prove to be a bad apple in the barrel of conservative policy.

 

With all of that in mind, Trump’s endorsement still matters a great deal in a tightly contested primary race like in Wisconsin. The difference of a few thousand votes could make the difference. Remembering that the Republican primary voter is not the same demographic as a general election voter, the impact of the endorsement in Wisconsin is varied.

 

Candidates Tim Michels, Rebecca Kleefisch, Kevin Nicholson, and Tim Ramthun all wanted Trump’s endorsement, but it mattered differently for each of them. For Ramthun, Trump’s endorsement was his only path to victory, but even had he received the endorsement, he stood little chance of winning. It was a long shot and he has zero chance of winning.

 

Nicholson is in much the same boat as Ramthun. Nicholson is a more viable candidate than Ramthun, but with two heavyweights in the race, he needed Trump’s endorsement to put him back in the ring. Without the endorsement of Trump, Nicholson’s odds are very, very long to edge out a victory.

 

Then there were two. Kleefisch had sought Trump’s endorsement, but receiving it would have likely been a mixed bag for her. It would have made her a more attractive candidate for some of the more Trumpian primary voters, but might have also turned off some of the stalwart conservative base Republicans who handed Senator Ted Cruz the primary victory in 2016 instead of Trump. Kleefisch won 55% of the vote at the state Republican convention a few weeks ago demonstrating that she already enjoys significant support amongst the reliable Republican primary voter.

 

By endorsing Michels, Trump has probably leveraged his greatest possible impact on the race. Coming in late, Michels is blitzing the state with commercials and had already moved to a virtual tie with Kleefisch. Trump’s endorsement gives Michels unlimited free media attention from a mainstream media that still laps up whatever scrap Trump throws in their bowls. The endorsement also likely moves some voters from Nicholson and Ramthun into the Michels camp. Combined, it makes Michels the frontrunner with nine weeks to go until the election.

 

Perhaps endorsing Michels was inevitable for Trump. They share interests as builders and businessmen. Michels was something of an insider during the Trump administration while serving on Trump’s infrastructure task force and as a financial supporter. Michels fits the same mold of the businessman-turned-politician. But Trump is always Trump’s biggest fan and does not endorse candidates who do not demonstrate fealty.

 

My fervent hope remains that the Republicans have a robust debate about the issues that matter to Wisconsinites and how Gov. Tony Evers has failed the people of Wisconsin. Winning on Aug. 9 is important for the candidates. Winning on Nov. 8 is crucial for Wisconsin.

Inflation Continues to Worsen

Our economy is collapsing and families are hurting as the politicians and media put on a theater production in D.C.

Inflation accelerated further in May, with prices rising 8.6% from a year ago for the fastest increase since December 1981, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Friday.

 

The consumer price index, a wide-ranging measure of goods and services prices, increased even more than the 8.3% Dow Jones estimate. Excluding volatile food and energy prices, so-called core CPI was up 6%, slightly higher than the 5.9% estimate.

On a monthly basis, headline CPI was up 1% while core rose 0.6%, compared to respective estimates of 0.7% and 0.5%.

 

Surging shelter, gasoline and food prices all contributed to the increase.

 

Energy prices broadly rose 3.9% from a month ago, bringing the annual gain to 34.6%. Within the category, fuel oil posted a 16.9% monthly gain, pushing the 12-month surge to 106.7%.

 

Shelter costs, which account for about a one-third weighting on the CPI, rose 0.6% for the month and now are 5.5% higher from a year ago.

 

Finally, food costs climbed another 1.2% in May, bringing the year-over-year gain to 10.1%.

Washington County Extends “Temporary” Sales Tax… Again

I know that I’ve been on this for 20 years, but this is the object lesson for never believing government when they sell a tax as a “temporary” measure for some “emergency.” Come to think of it, that lesson applies to any government program.

WEST BEND — The Washington County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved keeping the county’s 0.5% sales tax in place Wednesday night.

As a reminder, I wrote this is 2006:

In 1998, Washington County was in a bit of a pickle. Several large capital improvement projects, like an expansion of the University of Wisconsin Washington County, the courthouse addition, and new Highway Department facilities, were looming and there wasn’t going to be enough tax revenue to pay for them. In the face of a crisis, the County Board did what governments always do – they raised taxes.

 

In this case, the new tax came in the form of a half penny county sales tax. They also designated part of the sales tax to be used for debt service, but that didn’t kick in until three years ago. Since 1999, the sales tax has removed over $49,400,000 from the pockets of people who choose to spend money in Washington County. Since the new sales tax was primarily for one time expenses, the County Board put in a provision that says that the County Board can vote to stop collecting the tax in 2006 – this year. If no vote is taken to stop the tax, then the tax will continue indefinitely.

Californian Voters Vote for Anti-Crime Candidates

How bad does it have to be for Californians to vote this way?

For months now, voters in San Francisco and Los Angeles have voiced their concerns that daily life in their cities appears to be spiraling out of control. Residents in San Francisco have been contending with a rise in burglaries and car thefts, as well an alarming spate of hate crimes directed against Asian Americans. Los Angeles residents have witnessed a sharp increase in violent crime, while city leaders have been grappling with a homelessness crisis that has led to the proliferation of tents and trash across parks, sidewalks and public spaces, while exposing an untreated mental health emergency on their streets.

On Tuesday, San Francisco voters registered their disquiet by recalling District Attorney Chesa Boudin amid concern that he was advancing progressive policies as a national criminal justice reform advocate at the cost of their safety. It was a move that signaled just how far the political pendulum has swung since the 2020 election cycle when many Democratic voters cited police accountability and criminal justice overhauls among their top concerns – a debate that reached a crescendo following the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis.

On the same night, voters in the overwhelmingly progressive city of Los Angeles signaled their unease with Democrats’ handling of crime and homelessness by elevating billionaire shopping mall magnate Rick Caruso, a former Republican who became a Democrat earlier this year, into a runoff race to replace term-limited Mayor Eric Garcetti.

Trump’s endorsement changes GOP primary

My column for the Washington County Daily News is online and in print. Here’s a part:

There is little doubt that Donald Trump still holds great sway in the Republican Party. Given his tremendous success as president and the legions of voters he attracted to the GOP, there are many Republican candidates who covet Trump’s endorsement. They covet it with good reason. Trump’s endorsement has the power to raise marginal candidates to be viable and to give a candidate enough support to win in a tight race. Trump’s endorsed candidates have a remarkable record of winning, but there are a couple of facts to keep in mind with that record. First, Trump has many positive qualities, but they come with some deep personal flaws. He is as narcissistic as they come and he wants to win. This has led him to endorse several candidates who were already going to win handily. This character flaw has also led him to endorse losing candidates because of personal grudges (Georgia). It also leads him to sometimes endorse the candidate that he thinks is going to win instead of who might actually be the best person for the job.

 

This leads us to the second fact to bear in mind with Trump endorsements. Trump’s passion to win trumps any ideology. His endorsements do not necessarily mean that the endorsee is conservative. For example, Dr. Mehmet Oz has a long-standing history of supporting gun control and big government healthcare, but he squeaked out a win in Pennsylvania over a proven conservative after Trump endorsed him. These are issues that loom large in the next Congress and Oz may prove to be a bad apple in the barrel of conservative policy.

 

With all of that in mind, Trump’s endorsement still matters a great deal in a tightly contested primary race like in Wisconsin. The difference of a few thousand votes could make the difference. Remembering that the Republican primary voter is not the same demographic as a general election voter, the impact of the endorsement in Wisconsin is varied.

Ancient Politician Heads to Africa During Campaign

Arrogant or indifferent?

La Follette told The Associated Press that he plans to leave on a trip to Kenya and Zimbabwe on Sunday and doesn’t plan to return to Wisconsin until “early July.” The 81-year-old Democrat said he booked the trip two years ago but had to postpone it due to the COVID-19 pandemic and doesn’t want to lose his down payment.

The trip comes as La Follette faces a challenge within his own party for his job and with Republicans targeting his office.

“It’s probably not the best time, but I had no choice unless I had to forfeit the payment I made for it,” he said. “So I decided that life has to go on.”

Politicians Discuss Restricting More Civil Rights

Good, but they aren’t done yet.

“We’re not going to put a piece of legislation on the table that’s going to ban assault weapons, or we’re not going to pass comprehensive background checks,” Murphy, a Connecticut Democrat, said Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union.” “But right now, people in this country want us to make progress. They just don’t want the status quo to continue for another 30 years.

Canada Moves to Ban Handguns and Toy Guns

Totalitarianism under the mark of altruism and safety.

OTTAWA (Reuters) -Canada’s government introduced legislation Monday to implement a “national freeze” on the sale and purchase of handguns as part of a gun control package that would also limit magazine capacities and ban some toys that look like guns.

 

The new legislation, which resurrects some measures that were shelved last year amid a national election, comes just a week after a gunman killed 19 children and two teachers in their classroom in Uvalde, Texas.

 

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told reporters the new measures were needed as gun violence was increasing.

“We need only look south of the border to know that if we do not take action firmly and rapidly it gets worse and worse and gets more difficult to counter,” he said.

 

The handgun freeze would contain exceptions, including for elite sport shooters, Olympic athletes and security guards. Canadians who already own handguns would be allowed to keep them.

Knudson Resigns from WEC

Good.

Former GOP state Rep. Dean Knudson Wednesday announced his resignation from the Elections Commission once a replacement is in place.

 

Knudson, appointed to the commission by Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, said during a late afternoon meeting it has become clear to him that he’s no longer effective in his role as a Republican on the body.

 

He moved — and the commission approved — putting off selecting a new chair until a replacement is selected.

 

Knudson said he wasn’t interested in the role.

 

“It’s been made clear to me from the highest level of the Republican Party of Wisconsin that there’s a deep desire that I not be the chair. That’s fine,” Knudson said without offering specifics.

Knudson has been bad at this job. It curious, however, how his resignation came about. There have been calls for his removal and replacement from base Republicans and various Republican leaders since early 2020. It was early in 2020 when it became clear that the WEC was going to ignore laws, overstep its authority, and do so in favor of Democrats whenever possible.

And yet… those calls went unanswered until now. Knudson clearly felt that he should stay in the role because someone in the GOP leadership was telling him to do so. Vos? Of course. Who else? And who finally changed their mind? And why did it take so long?

Who is the real outsider?

Here is my full column that ran in the Washington County Daily News earlier this week:

The Wisconsin Republicans held their convention this past weekend. State political conventions are usually fairly lively and fun for those who attend, but utterly boring for those looking in from the outside. It is a time for party loyalists to reconnect with friends, revel in philosophical debates with people who think about such things, and advocate for elected and party leaders. It is only during important election years that anyone outside of the party pays any attention with opponents looking for “gotchas” and loyalists looking for direction.

 

The most anticipated and interesting event from this year’s state Republican convention was the result of the party endorsement vote. Every four years, the delegates of the convention will vote to endorse a primary candidate for governor. In order for the party to endorse a candidate, 60% or more of the delegates must vote for the same candidate.

 

The party’s endorsement is not just about bragging rights. It carries with it official party support with financial and logistical support for the endorsed candidate. Party members are free to support and work for whichever candidate they choose, but the party itself cannot support a primary candidate without that candidate being endorsed by the convention delegates. In recent memory, there has always been a strong front-runner for the Republican ticket well before the convention, so the convention delegates have used the endorsement vote as a mechanism to rally support for the chosen candidate. For example, in 2006, Mark Green and Scott Walker were battling for the nomination, but Walker dropped out in March and the Republican convention that year was more of a campaign rally for Green than anything else.

 

This year is different. With expectations high that the Republican candidate will have a strong chance of winning the governorship against incumbent Tony Evers, there is a sporty race for the Republican nomination. This cast a new importance on the party endorsement, but with a reversed polarity.

 

Many voters who always vote Republican or might lean that way this year are fed up with politicians. There is a strong feeling, stoked by traditional anti-government groups and egged on by the Trump wing of the party, that we need to throw all the bums out and elect political novices to office. That feeling is justified by the poor performance of our entire political establishment and rooted in our American tradition of amateur governance.

 

In this environment, the party endorsement is viewed by many as a negative. When the people want an outsider, the endorsement of a political party is political poison. How can a candidate be an outsider if the party establishment, as represented by the delegates of a formal convention, have endorsed that candidate?

 

Rebecca Kleefisch has been the GOP front-runner for months and, until Tim Michels entered the race, was widely expected to receive the Republican Party’s endorsement. Since entering the race, Michels has been flooding the media with commercials touting him as an outsider. Michels is wrangling over the title of “outsider” with Kevin Nicholson, who has been positioning himself as such for years. Timothy Ramthun might actually be the biggest outsider, even though he is an elected member of the state Assembly, as he runs on the fringe issue of overturning the 2020 election. Kleefisch, not to be out-outsidered, reminds people that she was an original outsider who challenged and beat the party favorite to get the Republican nomination for lieutenant governor (true).

 

So who is the real outsider? Frankly, who cares? It is a stupid distinction by which to decide for whom you will vote. Instead of bickering over who is the outsider, or the real outsider, or the super outsider, or the out-there outsider, we should cast our vote for the person who most shares our values and who is most likely to be effective in governing by those values. Values matter. Ideology matters (see: Biden administration). Backbone matters. Leadership matters. Execution matters. The insider-outsider continuum is meaningless.

 

For the record, nobody won the Republican party’s endorsement, so I guess all of the candidates are outsiders.

Most Americans Do Not Want Stricter Gun Laws

I was kind of shocked to see this on CNN.

Perhaps the best way to understand the public mindset on the gun control debate is to look at Gallup polling from earlier this year. The survey asked a simple question and a follow-up: Are you satisfied with the nation’s gun laws? And if you’re unsatisfied, do you want stricter or looser gun laws?

 

This year, only 36% of Americans said they were dissatisfied and wanted stricter gun control laws. Sixty-one percent were either satisfied (41%), dissatisfied but wanted less strict laws (13%) or dissatisfied and wanted no change (7%).

 

These numbers do shift somewhat from year to year, but the “dissatisfied and want stricter gun laws” opinion has never been a majority one this century.

 

The reason I like the question is because it gets at the intensity of feelings about the gun debate. Most people are generally fine with our country’s gun laws (to the degree that they are satisfied) or want them to be less strict.

Biden Responds to Shooting by… *checks notes*… Cracking Down on Police?

You can’t make this up.

The executive order signed by Biden will create a new national database that contains records of federal officer misconduct, including convictions, terminations, de-certifications, civil judgments, resignations and retirements while under investigation for serious misconduct.

It also requires all federal law enforcement agencies to revise use-of-force policies, banning chokeholds and restricting the use of no-knock warrants — two tactics that were widely criticized following the deaths of Floyd and Taylor.

Schumer Bellows for More Gun Laws But Won’t Postpone Vacation

Typical. It soooooo important, but despite Democrats won’t even bother postponing their long weekend to actually do anything. Good, but typical.

Schumer said he is willing to work with Republicans, but acknowledged that no gun bill is imminent and that the chamber would likely depart Thursday for its Memorial Day recess as scheduled.

And get the framing of the filibuster by the lefty reporters.

“Americans can cast their vote in November,” he said, despite the fact that Democrats already control both chambers of Congress and the White House. Because of current Senate rules, most legislation cannot pass without 60 votes due to the legislative filibuster, which was historically used to block civil rights legislation.

No Lifeguards. Two Solutions.

All of southeast Wisconsin is struggling to find lifeguards to staff their various swimming areas. Two of the most conservative areas of the state are taking radically different directions to solve it.

West Bend, via the Washington County Insider.

Last week the West Bend common council voted 5-2 (with alderwoman Tracy Ahrens absent) to seek bids on what it would cost to fill a portion of Regner Park Pond to turn it into a 3-foot wading pond. The early cost estimate was about $100,000.

Waukesha, via Fox6.

Waukesha County Parks beach swimming season will open with Swim at Your Own Risk (SAYOR) hours at six beach locations on Friday, May 27. There will be no lifeguards staffed at any beaches this season due to the labor shortage.

West Bend wants to pour taxpayer money into the pond and eliminate it as a swimming hole. It would take much more money to reverse the decision and dredge the pond again when and if lifeguards are available again. (At the rate of inflation, it might be cheaper to actually fill it with dollar bills instead of sand, but that’s a different discussion.)

Waukesha takes the simple and free approach that respects citizens as competent people who can be responsible for themselves.

West Bend’s approach is something I would expect from Milwaukee or Madison.

Waukesha’s approach is something I would expect to see in… well… West Bend.

Get it together, West Bend. Be more like Waukesha.

Who is the real outsider?

My column for the Washington County Daily News is online and in print. Here’s a part:

Rebecca Kleefisch has been the GOP front-runner for months and, until Tim Michels entered the race, was widely expected to receive the Republican Party’s endorsement. Since entering the race, Michels has been flooding the media with commercials touting him as an outsider. Michels is wrangling over the title of “outsider” with Kevin Nicholson, who has been positioning himself as such for years. Timothy Ramthun might actually be the biggest outsider, even though he is an elected member of the state Assembly, as he runs on the fringe issue of overturning the 2020 election. Kleefisch, not to be out-outsidered, reminds people that she was an original outsider who challenged and beat the party favorite to get the Republican nomination for lieutenant governor (true).

 

So who is the real outsider? Frankly, who cares? It is a stupid distinction by which to decide for whom you will vote. Instead of bickering over who is the outsider, or the real outsider, or the super outsider, or the out-there outsider, we should cast our vote for the person who most shares our values and who is most likely to be effective in governing by those values. Values matter. Ideology matters (see: Biden administration). Backbone matters. Leadership matters. Execution matters. The insider-outsider continuum is meaningless.

 

For the record, nobody won the Republican party’s endorsement, so I guess all of the candidates are outsiders.

Biden Rattles Saber Regarding Taiwan

Two concerns

President Joe Biden said Monday that the United States would intervene militarily if China attempts to take Taiwan by force, a warning that appeared to deviate from the deliberate ambiguity traditionally held by Washington.

 

The White House quickly downplayed the comments, saying they don’t reflect a change in US policy. It’s the third time in recent months – including during a CNN town hall in October – that Biden has said the US would protect Taiwan from a Chinese attack, only to have the White House walk back those remarks.

 

During a joint news conference with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida in Tokyo, Biden was asked if the US would be willing to go further to help Taiwan in the event of an invasion than it did with Ukraine.

First concern, I am not convinced that this is good policy. Our historic commitment to Taiwan is important and has been a stabilizer in the region for almost 70 years. If we do not defend Taiwan, then we are likely to see Japan and Korea rapidly rearm since they can’t rely on American support against a Chinese threat. This could lead to a much wider conflict. But there are a lot of layers of supporting Taiwan before we get to committing American lives to their defense.

Second concern, is anyone else concerned by the statement, “It’s the third time in recent months… that Biden has said the US would protect Taiwan from a Chinese attack, only to have the White House walk back those remarks.” If the president does not set foreign policy, who is? Why is the “White House” (read: nameless functionaries) determining our nation’s foreign policy instead of the president?

Evers fails to act to stem rise in violent crime

Here is my full column that ran in the Washington County Daily News last week.

Two facts have become very clear this election year. First, crime is a huge priority for Wisconsinites. Second, crime is not a priority at all for Gov. Tony Evers.

 

Since Tony Evers took office, crime — particularly violent crime — is way up in Wisconsin. Reviewing the crime statistics compiled by Wisconsin’s Department of Justice tells a tragic story. In comparing 2018 (the last year before Evers took office) to 2021 (the last full year), there were 82% more murders in Wisconsin, 16% more aggravated assaults, and 111% more vehicle thefts.

 

Even more tragic, while murders were up by 82%, arrests for murder were only up 15%. And while aggravated assaults were up by 16%, arrests for aggravated assaults were down by 4%. We have more violent crime, and we are arresting fewer of those violent criminals.

 

The vast majority of the rise in crime is coming from Milwaukee. The crime in Milwaukee made national news last Friday when 21 people were shot near the Deer District after the Bucks game. The violence prompted the Bucks to cancel the planned watch party in the Deer District for game seven of the series. Sadly, such violence is only slightly worse than what has become a normal weekend night in Milwaukee. It would be easy to dismiss the crime in Milwaukee. After all, citizens of the city of Milwaukee made it clear in the last mayoral election that they are unconcerned with the crime. They had a clear choice to elect a pro-law enforcement crimefighter and picked the other guy instead. But Milwaukee remains an economic and cultural nexus of the state. What happens in Milwaukee impacts all of Wisconsin. Despite the rising crime that is eating the core of Wisconsin’s largest city and spreading to other communities, Evers has made it clear that fighting crime is not a priority. After each heinous crime, Evers tweets the requisite sympathies and admonitions to behave, but does nothing.

 

After a monster with a history of violent crime and racist online rants was freed on $1,000 bail in Milwaukee two days before careening through the Waukesha Christmas Parade killing six and injuring dozens, Evers shared the appropriate sentiments and did nothing. Evers did not even admonish Milwaukee District Attorney John Chisholm for recommending a trivial bail, nor did he use his power as governor to remove Chisholm from office. Chisholm’s office has a history of coddling violent criminals, but Evers supports Chisholm’s policies.

 

After the shootings in Milwaukee last week, Evers once again took to media outlets to express his sorrow and outrage. And once again he is not acting to make any changes to keep it from happening again. Evers’ lieutenant governor, Mandela Barnes, who is also running for U.S. Senate, tweeted about the need for gun control — the old hobby horse of totalitarians throughout modern history — without even bothering to give any specific policy prescriptions.

 

In each of Evers’ budgets, he failed to offer any policy initiatives to reduce crime. Instead, under the label of “criminal justice reform,” Evers proposed spending more money on education and training for crooks in jail. He campaigned on closing the juvenile facilities of Lincoln Hills and Copper Lake, but four years later, they remain open waiting for a better solution for Wisconsin’s young criminals. Evers is consistent in advocating to legalize marijuana as a means of reducing crime, but such policies are more about appeasing college kids and crusty hippies. Nowhere in Evers’ budgets is there anything designed to lock up more criminals, empower law enforcement, or compel district attorneys and judges to conduct themselves with the rigor and vigor that justice and victims deserve.

 

Safe behind the walls of his taxpayer-provided mansion with armed guards escorting him wherever he goes, Governor Evers has consistently demonstrated disinterest in the explosion in violent crime that is wrecking lives and destroying the quality of life in the state. Wisconsin needs a new governor who cares more about victims than criminals.

Wisconsin GOP Does Not Endorse for Governor

Huh.

MIDDLETON, Wis. — Wisconsin Republicans voted Saturday not to endorse anyone for governor ahead of the GOP primary in August, with former Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch falling just short of the 60% needed to get the nod — and cash — that comes with winning the party’s official backing.

 

It marked the first time delegates have not endorsed a candidate for governor. Many activists, and one of Kleefisch’s rivals, had argued for not endorsing anyone, saying it would fracture the party.

 

[…]

 

Kleefisch got 55%, while “no endorsement” got 43% on the final ballot. The other candidates were all in the single digits.

I’m not there, so I don’t have a personal feel for the mood of the delegates. Judging from comments on social media, Michels and Nicholson supporters were pushing for no endorsement because they knew that their respective candidates could not win it. I don’t know what Ramthun’s supporters were up to. In the end, no other candidate was strong enough to deny Kleefisch the endorsement, but there were enough people who did not want to risk fracturing the party.

What does it mean? I think that Michels and Nicholson miscalculated. They are both running on the “outsider” ticket and are trying to paint Kleefisch as the “insider.” But by managing to deny her the endorsement, Kleefisch doesn’t appear to be the insider that they are trying to portray her as. Meanwhile, Kleefisch has still demonstrated strong support from core Republicans with a solid 55% showing. Michels and Nicholson would have been better off pushing to get Kleefisch the nomination (quietly, of course), so that they could hang it like a millstone around her neck during the election. As it is, they helped muddy the insider/outsider dynamic.

There is the practical matter that the endorsement brings with it official support from the Republican Party including money and party resources. But given Kleefisch’s strong support, she’s likely to get all the help she needs anyway from the state and county party functionaries.

 

Archives

Categories

Pin It on Pinterest