7 months after "winning" his recall election Wisconson Governor Scott Walker (R-MoneyBuysElectionsLand) has kicked off his re-election bid for 2014 by picking a new campaign team. Sure, it's 2 years early, but when several of your top aides in your former elected office have been convicted of felonious conduct and you still have ongoing local and federal John Doe investigations into the activities in that office, you can't start too soon.
Stephan Thompson, Executive Director of the Wisconsin Republican Party and former Deputy Campaign Manager of Walkers 2010 Gubernatorial campaign will be his Campaign Manager. Keith Gilkes, Campaign Manager for both Walkers 2010 campaign as well as the 2012 recall, will serve as an "unpaid advisor".
Nicole Tieman, who served as the Wisconsin spokesperson for the RNC during the 2012 elections, will become Walkers new campaign spokesperson.
Jonathan Wetzel, who served as an assistant campaign manager on former Governor Tommy Thompsons attempt to become a US Senator (losing to Democrat Tammy Baldwin) will serve as Deputy Campaign Manager.
In the money money money department, Colleen Coyle, who has served as a fundraiser for the GOP, will raise funds for Walker as the campaign Finance Director.
No Democrat has yet announced an intention to run for Governor in 2014.
In other Walkerlicious news, he's distancing himself from Republican State Senator Glenn (slob) Grothmans racist views on Kwanzaa which were detailed here by Giles Goat Boy. In short, calling the holiday something invented by "radicals", celebrated not by African-Americans, but by "white liberals" who want to divide the country.
“Yeah, I mean, to me it just doesn't make any sense why he’s doing that, I mean, I've commented on Kwanzaa in the past and everybody's got a different opinion, but I don't know why someone like that would go out of their way to alienate people over something that some people support,” Walker told WKOW-TV's 27 News in an interview. "Our standpoint is he needs to be focused on things regarding state business, not issues like that."Walker has been called upon to denounce those statements by Grothman, bus hasn't.
Graeme Zielinski, (Wisconsin Democratic) party spokesman, said Friday that the Republican governor is “trying to have it both ways.”(information in italics added for clarity)
“It is not merely that Grothman, a top Republican leader, went out of his way to alienate people. It is that he did it in a way that directly attacked our shared commitment to decency and tolerance,” Zielinski says. “Our black caucus has called on him to denounce Grothman's conduct, but, for whatever reason, Walker seems to have little interest in doing that.”
Of course, Walker won't denounce those comments. He's the guy who who ordered the removal of a painting with a diverse group of children playing which had hung for many years in the Governors Mansion. His lengthy history of white people only as his aides and advisors is as well known as his attitudes on minorities.
In more local news, Madison radio station WTDY, formerly the home of RW wingnuttia, but also the home of John "Sly" Sylvester a firebrand supporter of the Wisconsin Uprising and worker rights has changed to become the THIRD Madison sports talk station. 8 employees were abruptly fired and the station went to a Christmas format about 6 weeks ago.
WOZN becomes Madison's third sports talk station, joining the Clear Channel-operated station The Big 1070 on 1070 AM and ESPN Radio, operated by Beaver Dam's Good Karma Broadcasting on 100.5 FM.There have been efforts to get Sly on the air since then. His free podcasts were always "must hear" at my house (I'm not in Madison and even if I was, I don't get up that early). The information on state and local news and guests (John Nichols was on every day) were always great. He's been missed to an enormous degree.
Stay tuned for further newsiness as it happens.