Wednesday, September 28, 2005

The Candidates

by Tom Bozzo

Is it that time already?

Jay at Folkbum reminds me that Bryan Kennedy, who also ran against F. James Sensenbrenner in 2004, is already at it with TV ads highlighting Sensenbrenner's saintly opposition to Hurricane Katrina aid.

I've said before that I almost feel sorry for F. Jim on this one. His notional reason for voting against was an absence of controls to ensure that the taxpayer's money was well spent. This is an entirely founded concern, as Mark Thoma observes the pigs lobbyists lining up at the trough over at Economist's View. The problem with this, of course, is that F. Jim is a senior Republican, so if he can't get Denny Hastert to insert sensible financial control provisions in the House bill, he either didn't have them to insert or is otherwise totally useless. As I said, almost.

Best of luck to Kennedy. He'll need it, as the WI-5 includes much of Milwaukee's heavily Republican suburban sprawl.

I've also been asked by a friend in D.C. to consider giving some financial love to Jamie Wall, who is running against paleoconservative Assembly strongman John Gard for the open and thus in principle more contestable seat in the eighth district. Wall was an intern in the guy who should be president's (*) domestic policy shop in ancient times. Ah, for the days when the administration had policies.

Wall's site is pretty bare-bones for now, though it's not too bad of an idea, as such things go, for Wall to project himself as the in-touch guy with business experience and a love of the north woods, versus carpetbagger-career-politician — not that there's necessarily anything wrong with that — from Sun Prairie (who moreover looks like he's sucked on a lemon after an already-bad day in every photo I've seen of him) Gard. Heck, it might have worked for Tim Michels had Michels actually had "ideas" and thus not looked so much like an empty suit next to Feingold.

Keeping Gard out of the federal government would be a very good idea, so I am receptive to the plea.

Addendum: Stacie Rosenzweig has some discussion of WI-8 candidate Steve Kagen over at the Vast Dairy State Conspiracy, and a commenter there speaks favorably of Nancy Nusbaum, a former mayor of DePere and two-term Brown County executive, who presumably has name recognition advantage over the rest of the field.

(*) I am, of course, talking about the guy who, under a more accurate Florida voting system, would have won the electoral as well as the popular vote in 2000.
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