One of the news stories I wrote for my day job involved an interview with the executive director of a non-partisan watchdog organization that keeps track of campaign spending, and he said Wisconsin is probably going to be “darn near ungovernable” in the next few months, until things settle down a bit more.
125 million dollars – the total spending for political ads, flyers, robocalls, yard signs, t-shirts, you-name- it – involving all the recall elections in Wisconsin in the past year and a half. That is simply insane.
A few thoughts.
New Rule: No candidate for public office is allowed to mention his or her opponent in ANY way in ANY political ad. This rule shall be universal. PACs and SuperPAC’s, since our politicians don’t have the backbone to accomplish any meaningful campaign reform, will be required to identify which candidate the PAC supports, and shall be forbidden from ANY reference to the opposing candidate. No PAC, SuperPAC, nor any other organization or individual, shall be allowed to do any “issue” advertising.
In other words, the candidates will be forced to talk only about what THEY will do if elected.
This will prevent the sort of rhetorical dynamic that pervades and pollutes the political scene today. In other words, if candidate X says he prefers to eat his breakfast cereal dry, opposing candidate Y will be enjoined from saying “Candidate X hates dairy farmers”.
I know this New Rule violates a number of recent U.S. Supreme Court decisions. Too bad.
A word to the Solidarity Singers, drummers, and hangers-out at the Capitol: go home. Find something else to do. You’re not helping.
A word to the listeners of shout radio, hate radio, and other forms of talk radio: limit your exposure. The people who do these shows can’t help themselves.
A word to hard-core lefties like Brett Hulsey: in case you haven’t been paying attention, the Democrats just got their ass kicked. Hard. One win out of six recalls is an ass-kicking. So, when Governor Walker says now that the recalls are over, he’d like to work with the opposing party, your response “I’ll believe it when I see it” sounds petulant. Try something like “we welcome this move by Governor Walker and are eager to work with him.” The fact that Walker talked about a “burgers, brats, and beer” get-together for legislators won him a lot of points with regular folks.
I’m an independent, born and raised in the Fox Valley. There are a lot of people like me in this state, and we’re the ones that really decide elections. We’ll vote for Democrats like Bill Proxmire and Russ Feingold, and we’ll vote for Republicans like Lee Dreyfus and the OLD Tommy Thompson (as opposed to the lobbying Washington insider Tea Person Tommy has morphed into).
My lefty pals will hate me for this, but the 14 state senators who decamped for Illinois are not heroes. To a lot of Wisconsinites, they looked and acted like anything but. Disrupting the Governor, regardless of who the Governor is, when he’s talking to a group of Special Olympians, is just plain stoopid. Jumping in front of a TV live shot with a t-shirt that says F*CK WALKER is a no-class move. Pouring beer on somebody’s head, in many parts of this state, will get you a trip to the ER and a huge dental bill. Here’s a news flash: the clenched fist symbol does NOT sit well with a vast majority of Wisconsinites.
Don’t get me wrong. Remember, I’m an independent. And as far as I’m concerned, the brothers Fitzgerald are two of the most arrogant asses ever elected to public office anywhere. Glenn Grothman is a huge national embarrassment. Becky Kleefisch’s comments about gay people place her squarely in the middle of the 14th century.
You know how you get rid of people like that? You defeat them in the next election.
You have a lot of work to do.