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Research 2000 for Daily Kos. 6/8-10. Likely voters. MoE: ±4%. No trendlines.

Jim Doyle (D-inc)  48
Scott Walker (R)   36
Undecided          16

Jim Doyle (D-inc)  49
Mark Neumann (R)   35
Undecided          16

Jim Doyle (D-inc)  45
Tommy Thompson (R) 47
Undecided           8

Incumbent Gov. Jim Doyle has an unlovely 43-48 approval rating, yet he's still close to the 50% mark against his likeliest opponents, Milwaukee Co. Executive Scott Walker and former WI-01 Rep. Mark Neumann. As is typical for candidates like Walker and Neumann this far out from election day, neither is terribly well known - half the sample has no opinion of Walker, while a third doesn't know Neumann.

Meanwhile, former Gov. Tommy Thompson remains pretty popular (54-36), but only holds Doyle to a dead heat. Perhaps Obama's 14-point thumping of John McCain is a signal that Wisconsin's politics have changed - or maybe voters are just tired of Tommy, who was elected to an unprecedented four terms and then, after an ineffectual stint in the Bush cabinet, made a fool of himself with an embarrassing presidential run.

My gut is that the 67-year-old Thompson, who has been toying with a run, won't get in. Thing is, Doyle (who's already served two terms) might bow out as well. So we also tested his most likely replacement, Lt. Gov. Barbara Lawton:

Barbara Lawton (D) 44
Scott Walker (R)   35
Undecided          21

Barbara Lawton (D) 43
Mark Neumann (R)   35
Undecided          22

Barbara Lawton (D) 44
Tommy Thompson (R) 46
Undecided          10

Lawton, who holds a 35-17 favorability rating, fares quite well. Indeed, her numbers are almost identical to Walker's 33-16 favorables. The fact that she starts off with a natural nine-point advantage does suggest that something fundamental may indeed have changed in Wisconsin. (If so, thanks, Republicans!)

We also took a look at the Senate race, where Russ Feingold is up for re-election. While Feingold often makes things a lot more interesting than they have to be (he's never won with more than 55% of the vote), he looks to be in command at this point:

Russ Feingold (D-inc) 53
Paul Ryan (R)         32
Undecided             15

Russ Feingold (D-inc) 52
Mark Green            34
Undecided             14

Rep. Paul Ryan (WI-01), something of a GOP rising star, has more or less ruled out a run against Feingold. And former Rep. Mark Green, who lost the 2006 gov race against Doyle, is working for an anti-malaria non-profit in DC, following up on his stint as US ambassador to Tanzania. He says he's not "seeking out" any return to elective office at this time.

And therein lies the real story for Russ Feingold: the Republican cupboard in Wisconsin is pretty bare. We surveyed Ryan and Green largely because no other serious names have come forward. Feingold may get very lucky indeed next year.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 01:10 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  I think a few people from WI here (14+ / 0-)

    have said Herb Kohl may retire in 2012, and so it's more likely Ryan will run for that seat.

  •  Please retire, Gov. Doyle (11+ / 0-)

    Particularly with numbers like that for Lt. Gov. Lawton.

    •  Yeah, Doyle has been very lackluster... (9+ / 0-)

      ...he appears relatively non-corrupt, and relatively well-intended, but he is just a really poor manager.

      Like all states, we've got fiscal issues here. But he's manageing them pretty badly.

      I think the 2011-2012 budget is gonne be murder for whoever is in office at the time.

      REAFFIRMED as a second-class citizen since Nov 4, 2008!

      by Timoteo on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 01:30:00 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  How so? (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        askew, 3goldens, blueyedace2

        They just binded a budget together that keeps social service levels at their current levels. Pretty awesome job considering the circumstances.

        Justice for Siegelman

        by realwischeese on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 01:31:34 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Budget is a mess... (5+ / 0-)

          ... and social services have taken cuts, but I think those were probably needed.

          This year's process seemed even messier than most, even with the Dems in control. Lots of hokey-pokey ("put it in, take it out, put it in again") w/ fairly large budget items.

          Given the Dem strength in numbers [house, senate, gov & all but one consititutional office] the GOP should be trounced; it's not as if there appear to be any major philosophical splits in the Dem party here.

          But the Dems are often just muddling forward.

          The top of the diary points out Doyle's bad favorables.  I think I'm not alone in my feeling he's not doing the job as well as he should be.  

          REAFFIRMED as a second-class citizen since Nov 4, 2008!

          by Timoteo on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 01:39:47 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Bad Managment (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          blueyedace2, grasshopper, Puddytat

          Doyle picks bad managers, presumably because he is one himself. There are numerous state agencies where senior employees are retiring left and right with a real sense of frustration. Morale in state agencies is at an all time low. Some unions are talking about not backing Doyle in the election. It is not just that they got better deals from Tommy. Doyle is vindictive, and his managers micro-manage. There is a general sense that he neither trusts nor appreciates state employees.

          •  DoA employees in particular (0+ / 0-)

            don't much appreciate the way Doyle essentially threw Georgia Thompson under the metaphorical locomotive when Biskupic et al. railroaded her.  (Doyle's efforts to help Thompson get restitution came only after the 7th Circuit had literally laughed her conviction out of court.)  The extent to which Doyle perceives -- and accedes to -- the poor esteem in which much of the public holds state workers has never been much of a secret, and wasn't any secret in connection to his handling of that whole debacle.

            Not great for state workers' morale, and not great for Democrats either, considering that "state employees are vermin" is a Republican frame, and not the only one Doyle has been willing to reinforce to serve his idea of political expediency (see also "pledge not to raise taxes").

          •  He isn't just a bad manager; his policies are bad (0+ / 0-)

            Philosphically this guy is must a middle of the roader and that equals more of the same, keeping all our lives basically where they are.

            The unfair system that favors the wealthy and the connected stays in place.

            Totally dumb practices like the Wisconsin Knowledge and Concepts Exam for students, a practically meaningless fill in the bubble test stay in place.

            Status quo folks.  That's all Doyle is...and we deserve so much more.

            Obama used to be for single payer before he came out against it.

            by formernadervoter on Fri Jun 12, 2009 at 06:33:39 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  My respect for Doyle has gone way up (0+ / 0-)

          with his willingness to take on the bloated prison system. (even tommy, in his farewell speech, cautioned the then Republican legislature against building more prisons. "I've left you all you'll ever need, probably too many."

          Practicing Law without a License is my 3d favorite Crime.

          by ben masel on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 07:09:12 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Lackluster, true... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Miss Blue, blueyedace2

        but I too give him credit for limiting the damage to education and other social spending in an absolutely horrendous fiscal climate.

        I think the perception of him as lackluster is in large part due to his utter lack of charisma of any sort. I heard his speech at the state Dem convention in LaCrosse in '06, and diehard Democrats--his core supporters--were cringing at his poor delivery. I thought "this may be the worst public speaker of any successful politician that I've ever heard."

        But that being said, I think that substantively he has done about as well as we could hope for, given the alternatives.

    •  What do you know about Doyle? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      askew, blueyedace2

      Jim Doyle is an awesome guy, and knows how far to take his party left.  We now have control of both house and senate, and much of that is due to the steady hand of Jim Doyle. Please retire?-please delete comment more appropriate.

      Justice for Siegelman

      by realwischeese on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 01:30:11 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Beg to differ... (6+ / 0-)

        We now have control of both house and senate, and much of that is due to the steady hand of Jim Doyle.

        I think it's got a lot more to do with the GOP imploding here, and the general tack of the whole region.

        I think Doyle's a pretty good guy - but I think he's a poor manager, and that's gonna be more of a liability over the next few years.

        REAFFIRMED as a second-class citizen since Nov 4, 2008!

        by Timoteo on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 01:33:55 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Poor manager? (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          3goldens, Spirit of Fighting Bob

          Let's try this again.  How is he a poor manager?  The Dems control has much, much more to do with Obama's coattails than the GOP imploding.  We replaced all our GOP state reps and senators last election uphere in Eau Claire.  We finaly booted out the tired cronyism of our local Dem party with progressives who also were Obama folks.  It was as simple as that.  Nothing the GOP did to implode up here-we just organize and crushed them.

          Justice for Siegelman

          by realwischeese on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 01:39:14 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Managing the state (4+ / 0-)

            Doyle has carried on Thompson's tradition of outsourcing state jobs to private business at a higher cost than doing it with state employees. He continues centralizing more jobs in the Dept of Admin rather than in the operating departments of the state. IT projects, generally outsourced, continue to fail.

            Corrections continues to grow. I talked to the spouse of a guard and it looks like the eight days of forced, unpaid vacation that all state employees are going to be required to take in each of the next two years will be covered by other guards working overtime. It was foolish not to exempt them.

            •  Correction on the Correction (0+ / 0-)

              Doyle could not legally exempt one class of employees from the unpaid time off edict.  He tried to with the guards, but was advised this could not be done.  What a poor manager? Hardly.  He is trying his hardest to keep everything together and hope for a quicker than anticipated recovery.  Me too.

              Justice for Siegelman

              by realwischeese on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 02:03:27 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Doyle Is The Democrat's Biggest Liability (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Timoteo, grasshopper, noonan2

                in Wisconsin.

                Doyle does nothing to communicate a coherent vision for the state, he offers nothing inspiring to vote FOR, and if a decently well spoken and motivated Republican gets in the race we may be in trouble.  The Wisconsin media, particularly the many regional and local papers, are center-right and have little interest in delving into the basis of claims the Republicans make, so they will not help Doyle.

                As a leader, here is an example of Doyle failure in an area he doesn't have to fail in: Thompson removed appointment of the DNR Secretary from the DNR Board and made it a political appointment of the governor.  The "Hook and Bullet" crowd does not like this, and we have fought for years to return the DNR Secretary to DNR Board control.  Doyle talked support for this but blamed a Republican legislature for not being able to get it changed back.  Then, when the Dems finally retake the legislature, Doyle disappears on this issue, and has done nothing to make the change he claimed he supported.  If he made this change happen, he'd see an immediate bump in his numbers, especially north of Highway 29.  Republican sportsmen would see him more favorably, no one would view this as a bad move, but he doesn't do it.  Why?  It seems he likes the power of the appointment.  That is political tone-deafness on Doyle's part--he takes a win-win and makes it into a lose-lose.

                His inability to communicate a vision for Wisconsin, coupled with his political left-footedness make me worried that the Republicans will make a comeback here.

                •  How in the world did the incompetant Doyle (0+ / 0-)

                  kick Mark Green's ass so comprehensively?  Your example is not realistic as most sportsman have some beef with the DNR.  I really question how burning an issue the DNR Secretary is to that many cheesers.  I doubt very much, I have not heard a mention here in Eau Claire.  Doyle is viewed as a safe, friendly face up here.  Even the local media are friendly to him.  

                  Justice for Siegelman

                  by realwischeese on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 03:43:56 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  North of Green Bay (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    grasshopper, realwischeese

                    The "other" north of HWY 29 absolutely hates Doyle for the reasons mentioned above. Democrats are lukewarm about him. I have nothing to say to dispute what Lab Rat said. I've seen Doyle several times in front of a partisan, raucous crowd prior to his speech walk away with no vision or impression of what he said. Every time he's the keynote speaker, he kills the mood.

                    The best sig is no sig.

                    by noonan2 on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 04:20:01 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

            •  Corrections isn't growing. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              Much of the credit goes to lame duck Guv McCallum and former Senator Gary George, who snuck the end of Mandatory minimum sentences into the Dec. 2002 Emergency Budget Reconciliation.

              Doyle's budget calls for early release of elderly and some non-violent offenders. Many others who'd had time added to their sentences for minor infractions while imprisoned are getting these extra months restored.

              Practicing Law without a License is my 3d favorite Crime.

              by ben masel on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 07:24:59 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  I agree (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            The southside of Eau Claire had historically had a Democrat in the state senate, with the aberration of Brown for a term. It has gone back to the natural equilibrium of the area.

            "Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it." ~Mark Twain

            by Up North on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 03:02:06 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Gains started before Obama. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            A lot of the credit goes to Pocan's recruiting Assembly candidates in seats where the Republicans hadn't faced a challenge in years.

            Practicing Law without a License is my 3d favorite Crime.

            by ben masel on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 07:18:08 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  No! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      I'm not sure anyone further left than Doyle can be elected governor. Feingold is uniquely talented; that's the only reason he continues to be safe. I don't think Barbara Lawton would be a very strong candidate statewide, which means Doyle is our best option.

      The Bush Family: 0 for 4 in Wisconsin

      by Korkenzieher on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 01:44:54 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Eight years is enough (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        grasshopper, Puddytat

        I don't really think that we are better off with governors who go on and on. Eight years is longer than the average of the pre-Tommy governors. At some point, the good that a governor does is over.

        Another person who needs to retire is Fred Risser. There just aren't that many politicians who are bringing good ideas all the time. Most of them get tired or bored, but can't let go. It seems to be an addiction.

      •  Lawton would do well statewide. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Miss Blue, Timoteo, noonan2

        Of course she does well in lefty strongholds (Madison and Milwaukee) and has nice solid support from labor, etc. But boy you get her north of Highway 29, and people are absolutely NUTS for her. I mean, totally in love. It helps that she's from outside Madison, I think.

        Also she's not as lefty as she's made out to be. The first bill she drafted was a tax cut... sales tax holiday on Energy Star appliances. And she was the driving force behind tax cuts/incentives for the film and video production industry.

        Conservatives love America like four-year-old kids love their mommies. -Al Franken

        by leftilicious on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 02:04:20 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Lawton (0+ / 0-)

          I've seen her speak, and was very underwhelmed. Maybe I caught her on an off day. I'm just not sure about her. If she's popular up north, that's crucial, of course, since the Dems would carry Milwaukee and Madison.

          The Bush Family: 0 for 4 in Wisconsin

          by Korkenzieher on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 02:45:19 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Better than Doyle (0+ / 0-)

            And it's not even close. Yes, I'm from the north, and that's how the rank and file in the party feel as well.

            She lives outside of Green Bay, and her run would help hold the WI-08 seat Kagen has now.

            The best sig is no sig.

            by noonan2 on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 04:21:55 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  Feingold is an instititution now. HE WON'T LOSE. (12+ / 0-)


    Some friends of mine who are Greens vote for him, but not other Democrat.

    Some Democrat with Cajones 2012!

    by crazymoloch on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 01:19:52 PM PDT

  •  I've been worried about (4+ / 0-)

    Mark Green since I found he'd been parked first in the ambassadorship and then in that non-profit (even though it seems to be a legitimate enterprise).  Even so, I think (and hope) that Feingold beats all comers.

  •  The upper midwest is firming up. (6+ / 0-)

    If we can return some semblance of prosperity to Michigan, we'll be good as gold.

    -5.38/-4.41 © all rights reserved

    by Willamette Democrat on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 01:23:16 PM PDT

  •  I think Russ... (6+ / 0-)

    is trying to hoodwink the GOP by acting like he's somewhat worried this cycle. Getting lots of email from the campaign and they're going to open a field office in Green Bay. But I just don't see it. The WI GOP's bench is weak to say the least.

    The lesson of that history is that you must not despair, that if you are right, and you persist, things will change. -Howard Zinn

    by blueyedace2 on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 01:23:23 PM PDT

  •  I'll donate money to Russ Feingold (8+ / 0-)

    even if the race isn't competitive. Would love to see him win in a huge blowout.

    "The heresy of individualism: thinking oneself a completely self-sufficient unit and asserting this imaginary `unity' against all others" Thomas Merton

    by Pinko Elephant on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 01:23:25 PM PDT

  •  I'd take some issue (6+ / 0-)

    with the characterization of Mark Neumann as being a relative unknown in WI.  He held Paul Ryan's seat for a couple of terms in the House.  And he was Feingold's opponent in his first re-election bid for Senate in 1998--a race which Russ won in a real squeaker.  

    Neumann has been out of the public eye for a while, which doesn't help him.  His politics are basically the same as Ryan's, if anything even more to the right.  But he's not as telegenic or as good a talker as Ryan.  

    He does seem to be very well-liked by WI republicans, except for the people from his home town (same as Russ Feingold's)--when running for US rep, he always won the district but lost his hometown.  Maybe people know him a little too well there....

    •  Yeah, two-thirds name rec is not bad (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Pinko Elephant

      But it's not a comparison of equals.

    •  I was born there (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Janesville is a solid blue city especially when it comes to presidential election, so how can the district be red.  Isn't Janesville the largest city in the district?  Or am I mistaken?

      Russ Feingold is a force to be reckoned with

      by HoosierLiberal on Fri Jun 12, 2009 at 02:31:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  They've re-configured the district a few times (0+ / 0-)

        But it includes the painfully-Republican Walworth County, plus a lot of fairly conservative rural areas.  And outside of the UAW (and the GM plant of course is now closing), I don't know that I'd even characterize Janesville as "solid blue," though it's certainly not bad.

        The district has a mixed history, but I think since Les Aspin left Congress the district hasn't fielded a lot of strong Dem candidates for the House.  So it's been Republican for a while.

  •  I know Tommy's son in law he is a friend of mine (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    blueyedace2, realwischeese

    I will ask him if he has any inside info and report back.

    I was never warned. I was just suddenly locked out. -TocqDville'

    by dakrle on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 01:32:01 PM PDT

  •  This isn't the same Mark Green... (0+ / 0-)

    ... who ran for Mayor in 2001 on the Dem ticket is it? Please tell me this opportunist boob didn't move all the way to Wisconsin to jump into another political race. (Apologies to Mark Greens everywhere if it's a different guy)

    C'mon Olympia... Join the party!

    by OReillysNightmare on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 01:34:17 PM PDT

  •  Mischaracterization (13+ / 0-)

    I think you're a little bit off the mark saying that "Wisconsin's politics have changed." We were never a red or Republican state-- yes, we elected Thompson for 4 terms and both times Bush came close to winning the state, but that was something of an anomaly. WI has traditionally been a very progressive-leaning state, one of the "bastions of blue" in the Midwest.  If anything, then, Obama's sweep of the state was just a return to our roots.

    •  I hope we have returned to our roots (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bramish, Miss Blue, Puddytat

      I never could understand how Thompson, the sliimiest weasel ever, got elected FOUR times to the governorship.  I know my spouse and I sure never voted for him!

    •  Perhaps (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Pinko Elephant, Puddytat

      Though Obama won the biggest Dem margin in WI since LBJ. Change or return, I welcome it.

    •  No New Republican Blood (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Miss Blue

          Not only was Tommy Thompson, the last Republican to win major statewide office (President, Governor, or Senator) in Wisconsin, he was the last non-incumbent Republican to win major statewide office--in 1986! Since then, Republicans have run the Bushes, Dole, and McCain for President, Scott McCallum and Mark Green for Governor, and Susan Engeleiter, Robert Welch, Mark Neumann, John Gillespie, Tim Michels, and Robert Lorge for the Senate, without success.

          Probably because of Tommy Thompson's success and the close presidential races in 2000 and 2004, people got the idea that Wisconsin is a close state at the national level. It's not, and it's increasingly less so at the state level as well. I'm frankly surprised that Doyle runs this well after 7 years and with the economic problems we have. The fact that Lawton runs about as strong is a pretty good indication that Wisconsin voters still hold very negative opinions about the Republican Party. It's too bad that the poll didn't ask about favborable/unfavorable opinions about the parties. I think that would be more interesting that the favorable/unfavorables of Scott Walker and Paul Ryan, who've never run outside Milwaukee County and the first Congressional district, and are largely unknown even here in Madison, not to mention northern and western Wisconsin.

      •  Van Hollen. (0+ / 0-)

        was the last non-incumbent Republican to win major statewide office.

        Practicing Law without a License is my 3d favorite Crime.

        by ben masel on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 07:46:58 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  for crying out loud, Dukakis won the state! (0+ / 0-)

        The only reason it gets close in presidential elections is because of completely spineless candidates.  The close races (Dukakis, Kerry, and Gore) would shy away from attacks or wouldn't refute the attacks at all or not very well.  Wisconsinites hate that.  They like backbone.  Not to sound too cliche, but candidates must stand up for what they believe in to assure voters in WI of who they are even if it is a progressive ideal (because Wisconsinites like that).

        Clinton and Obama showed backbone and won the state quite easily.

        Russ Feingold is a force to be reckoned with

        by HoosierLiberal on Fri Jun 12, 2009 at 02:40:35 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  If that frackin' Tommy Thompson (8+ / 0-)

    DARES show that mug of his anywhere  in this state in terms of running against Doyle (or Lawton), I will do everything I can (donating, holding up signs at intersections, letters to the editor) I can to make sure we NEVER have to look at that ape again.  Bought and paid for shill for Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce!  UGH!  And he will be reminded VERY publicly of how the State Supreme Court slapped him down HARD for raiding the State Pension Fund in order to use that money for his budget.   Idiot.  Fool.  Moron.  All of that wrapped up  in ONE dumb person!  

    That said, can somebody enlighten me as to why Doyle is so unpopular with some folks here?  I think he's been ok----I just want to know what I'm missing in terms of his performance as Governor.

    •  He has very little charisma (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Miss Blue, 3goldens

      Sadly, people still vote on that. He's a smart guy and has done quite well in very trying times, but he doesn't make much of an impression - like your non-descript high school math teacher or something.

      That said, I'll vote for him again if he runs.

      "It is often pleasant to stone a martyr, no matter how much we admire him"...John Barth

      by Giles Goat Boy on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 01:46:19 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Thanks--that's kind of what I suspected. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Miss Blue, Giles Goat Boy

        He's pretty bland for sure.  I haven't heard much out of Janesville or Beloit----I'm wondering if his efforts there on behalf of all those former GM employees might pay any dividends come the election.  IF Janesville gets that GM plant that they're in the running for, it would help things in that area a lot.

  •  THANK YOU! (11+ / 0-)

    Thank you for polling this race.  Every couple of days I think, I need to email the dKos folks and ask them to poll WI, because the only other poll we have right now was from a right-wing outfit. (Notably, that poll also showed Walker and Neumann losing, though by smaller margins, and did not poll Lawton at all.)

    So, again, thank you!

    blog | -6.13, -5.95 | Live every week like it's Shark Week.

    by folkbum on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 01:36:00 PM PDT

  •  Little Scotty Walker (12+ / 0-)

    His entire tenure as County Executive he has been catering to the suburbs and positioning himself with the Waukesha County goopers. He only has two ideas: cut taxes and privatize everything. Sell off whatever public assets the county still has. Let parks go to hell, let the bus system go to hell, submit phony budgets, and crow about "holding the line" on taxes.

    He is the County Exec from hell. In the end I am not convinced that the rest of the state will not vote for Walker or Neumann in sufficient numbers, even though few people I know are enthused about Doyle. If we are mired in a sluggish economy this time next year I could see Doyle losing to Thompson--people love the guy.

    As for Paul Ryan: he's a fresh-faced Ayn Rand fanatic who spouts the same tired tax cut nonsense. I guess he looks good in comparison to some other goopers, but I think he's overated as a future "star" of the GOP.

    •  Thanks for the warning about Walker (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      scribeboy, Puddytat

      I really don't know much about him, but it sounds like he could be a royal pain if he runs opposite Doyle.  Just what we need---another Gooper raiding the State Treasury to give to the businesses while beating down to nothing budgets for education and social services and raising taxes of working people while cutting those  of businesses and the very wealthy.  We better be ready to beat him back if he tries a run for the Governorship.  

    •  Amen (7+ / 0-)

      He's horrible. Really horrible. The only reason his numbers can possibly be that high is because people outside the Milwaukee area don't know anything about him.

      I don't even think he has appeal in most of the suburbs anymore. His base is, I think, Charlie Sykes and Rush Limbaugh listeners on the south side. The rest of us are tired of the knee-high grass in the parks in a town that used have some pride about its appearance and governmental efficiency.

      Scott Walker as governor? I'll move to Illinois if that happens.

      The Bush Family: 0 for 4 in Wisconsin

      by Korkenzieher on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 01:53:24 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yep (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        scribeboy, badger, Korkenzieher

        Walker ruined the Milwaukee County Park system, and even though I moved to Waukesha County 25 years ago, I'll never forgive him.

        My husband and I have a little running joke.....when a local news story comes on talking about some local miscreant or other, we say it's Scott Walker's fault. We're only half kidding. I really do not like that man.

    •  I rec you once in the clicky box (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      scribeboy, bdizz, Miss Blue, Puddytat

      and infinity times in my heart. I cannot stand that man. His kids went to my son's school, so I had to see him at school functions. <grumble grumble grumble> As a VIP guest, no less. Whey-faced smug a**hole.

      •  You poor thing! (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        I only have to put up with him on the teevee.....I like to watch the weather on Channel 4, and he's on that station all the time. They should pay him. At least I can just turn the station when they "feature" him.

  •  Good (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    to see Russ leading by double digits. we need him back.

  •  Russ's record has finally caught up with him. (10+ / 0-)

    Yessiree, all those votes against the Patriot Act and against the Iraq invasion and against President Bush have exacted a heavy political price, and now it looks like poor poor Russ Feingold is going to pay it.

    Many critics along the way have warned about what happens to politicians from swing-states (Gore and Kerry won Wisconsin by a razor's edge in 2000 and 2004) who dared to stand up for the Constitution and human decency. And now we see what happens when you take these sorts of risks, and we should all take the lesson to heart.

    If only Feingold had taken political lessons from more adept Senators Harry Reid or Joe Lieberman, he wouldn't be in this situation, and would be looking forward to a tenure of the same longevity and security that they are.

    Alas, alack.

    "It's like we weren't made for this world, But I wouldn't really want to meet someone who was." --Of Montreal

    by andydoubtless on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 02:08:37 PM PDT

  •  Hey, Milwaukeeites! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    badger, Miss Blue

    Are you aware of the move to privatize Milwaukee's water? Read this blog too.

    Scary stuff. Spread the word statewide! I was gonna diary this but got sidetracked with other Stuff In Real Life (tm).

  •  Wisconsin! Thompson is a Bush's man! (0+ / 0-)
    •  Tommy stormed out on Bush. (0+ / 0-)

      he cwas immediately doublecrossed on the deal under which he'd given up the Governorship for the HHHS post, having been promised no secondguessing. They immedddiately ordered him to cancel a stem cell summit, even before the swearing in. On visits home, he'd privately refer to the Bushies as a "nest of snakes."

      Practicing Law without a License is my 3d favorite Crime.

      by ben masel on Thu Jun 11, 2009 at 07:54:17 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Paul Ryan Won't Run (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Miss Blue

    for Senator because he is friends with Feingold.  He will however run in 2012 for the likely open seat of Herb Kohl.  Depending on how Obama is standing in the state then Ryan could be a formidable candidate.

    Doyle seems to be the right fit for the state.  He has won five elections statewide in a row....3 for state Attorney General (90, 94, 98) and 2 as Governor (2002, 2006).  People appear comfortable voting for him and if the economy gets better in 2010 he would likely win.

  •  Tammy Baldwin in 2012? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Miss Blue, zett, coolsub

    Too early and slightly off track, but based on all I know about Tammy Baldwin, I think it'd be great if she took over Kohl's seat in the 2012 election. Is Kohl going to retire?

  •  They'll have a hard time with stem cells... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Miss Blue

    ...Last time when Green ran, the only thing I could really discern from his campaign was that he'd ban one of the fastest growing economic generators in the state -- Stem cell research.  

    In order to win a repub primary, they'd have to toe the line with stem cell and other ideological anti-science lines, which will not play well in a state with a concentration of biotechnology firms second only to the State of California.  

    Though I can't wait to see Paul Ryan try.  He's one of the ones who always reassured us that losing our manufacturing jobs was A-OK because we were going to replace them all with new, high tech jobs.  I can't wait to see him explain why, now that all the manufacturing jobs are gone, the new high tech jobs should be banned because some of them involve embryonic stem cells.  

  •  Thompson wrecked the economy (0+ / 0-)

    So, it really goes to show you how much data the public uses in assessing the man in a poll: nothing.

    Whether it was free trade policies, or cutting wealthy people's taxes, or giving corporations tax credits for jobs they created for about a year, or shoveling money into the prison money pit, or oppressing teachers and students with meaningless standardized testing crap, Tommy carried on wrecking the state.

    That we're an economic basket case now is largely due to his helping to carve out necessary tax base and overspend on roads and prisons.  

    Of course, all along, he was helped by the Democrats.

    What's Doyle's solution?  Go to single payer to save on health care costs?  No.  Raise taxes to where they should be on wealthy people.  Nope.

    Those two right there would bring in billions in savings.

    No, he's cutting school funding.  That should make the election pretty close.

    Obama used to be for single payer before he came out against it.

    by formernadervoter on Fri Jun 12, 2009 at 06:22:14 AM PDT

  •  Other Dems should take a page from Feingold (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lol chikinburd

    He repeatedly sticks his neck out, and stands up for progressive values.  He doesn't compromise his position when the minority tries to assert their non-existent power.  He's not afraid to champion issues that Conservative pundits shout against.

    And yet, Feingold, in a state that sits center-left at best, continues to win elections.  I know plenty of conservatives in Wisconsin that still vote for Feingold.  He's straightforward, honest, and willing to just say what he thinks.  People find it refreshing.

    Wouldn't it be great if we had more Senators and Reps like Sen. Feingold?

  •  Wisconsin (0+ / 0-)

    As a Wisconsinite, I hope that Doyle bows out.  He has been a lackluster governor, doing on the state level just what Clinton did on the national level, i.e., allowing the conservative changes to continue (on the national level Reagan, on the state level Thompson), while making nothing but cosmetic changes to state affairs.  By allowing Thompson's tax cuts to the rich and big business and also his huge prison spending programs to continue, we now have a huge budget deficit.

    Barb Lawton would make a better governor.

  •  Beware (0+ / 0-)

    No doubt that Walker is as shitty as it gets when it comes to elected officials.  But anyone underestimating his chances in 2010 is doing so at his/her own peril.  The GOP gave Doyle and the Democrats a huge gift in 2006 by foolishly trotting out then U.S. Congressman Mark Green as it's nominee at a time when anti-Washington sentiment across this state was at record levels due to the failings of the pathetic 109th U.S. Congress.  Doyle never missed any opportunities to remind voters of that and succeeded in defining Green as pretty much part of the beltway establishment and the wrong guy in the wrong place at the wrong time.

    I'm not about to write Doyle off by any means and I think he's done a decent job considering the absolute mess that Thompson left Wisconsin in, but it's going to be much tougher for him this time around.  Walker is the absolute darling of the AM-hate radio hosts and it's throngs of kool-aid drinking listeners and he's already gearing up his campaign.  With the state's shrinking economy and subsequent revenue shortage, Doyle's in a pretty tight spot and risks potential backlash from some voters across the entire spectrum since cuts in the budget affect nearly everyone's pie.  

    Walker managed to weasel his way into the County Executive Office on the heels of a pension "scandal" and he'll try the same stunt this time around by trying to convince voters that Doyle is to blame for our state's budget "crisis".  That's how Walker has climbed the ladder.  He's always been the guy who manages to exploit voter backlash to his advantage in times of "crisis" or "scandal".  I'd agree with some of the comments early in this thread stating that Walker's been very bad for Milwaukee County.  He parades around in front of the media in attempts to portray himself as someone who's fighting for the taxpayer by constantly issuing budget vetoes while the County Board subsequently votes to override every veto once it becomes apparent that Walker's insane cuts in the budget couldn't possibly be sustained.

    The County Board has to do all the dirty work while Walker has done absolutely nothing for years but try to cultivate his image as some kind of no-nonsense, no more taxes "hero".  Wisconsin really needs the Dane County vote to turn out for Doyle next year or Walker won't be just Milwaukee's problem.  I really fear for the state if Doyle loses.  Walker will pander to any extreme right wing group if he thinks it would result in him gaining or consolidating his grip on power.

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