Now that the midterm elections are over, it’s time to take a step back and see what happened. I always like to look how the endorsements of the Milwaukee JournalSentinel turned out. The editorial page is led by its left-leaning editor, O. Ricardo Pimentel, who you may recall has stated that he will never return to his home state of Arizona while the State attempts to identify illegal aliens and deport them back to their home countries. He and his merry men endorsed two Republicans and five Democrats in seven competitive races here in Wisconsin. That resulted in three wins and four losses -- not too bad!
Topping the list of winning Republican endorsements was Scott Walker for governor. One could be a little suspicious about this endorsement as a desire to get the only elected Republican in office in Milwaukee County out of town so that the County Executive’s position can be filled by a liberal Democrat who knows how to raise taxes and drive business from the County. At the same time, it keeps Tom Barrett as Milwaukee’s Mayor and one who knows how to raise taxes and drive jobs out of the City.
The other winning Republican endorsement was for Sean Duffy to be the Congressman from District 7, to replace that old war horse Democrat David Obey, who has served since 1971. One thing you can say for Obey, is that he saw the writing on the wall early in the game and retired before he was fired by his constituents.
With both Republican candidates above as winners, the MJS added another in the form of Democrat Congressman Ron Kind in District 3. You may recall that Congressman Kind declined to be a candidate for Governor, obviously foreseeing the voters’ ill humor toward Democrats, opting to retain his supposedly safe seat. He did so, but only after a much closer contest than he bargained for, garnering only 50.3% of the vote. Whew – that was close!
With three victories under the MJS belt, let’s now turn to the four defeats – all Democrats. Endorsing Senator Feingold must have been a rote decision as the MJS has been doing that for the last 18 years. O. Ricardo and his minions obviously never detected the underlying wrath of much of the electorate over Feingold’s strong support of ObamaCare. That lady who got up at one of his public sessions and told him that he better get his resume ready, hit it right on the button. I attended one of those sessions and gagged over his vehement affirmation that ObamaCare would reduce the Federal deficit by billions.
The other three losing endorsements included 2-term Democratic Congressman Dr. Steve Kagan, who was bounced by Reid Ripple up in the Green Bay area by the landslide margin of 60% to 40%. Closer to home, the MJS endorsed two incumbent State Senators – John Lehman from Racine and Jim Sullivan from Wauwatosa. Both went down to ignominious defeat - Lehman to Van Wanggaard 45% to 55% and Sullivan to Leah Vukmir 46% to 54%.
So the MJS batting average was three out of seven, not too bad considering O. Ricardo Pimentel probably had to hold his nose to endorse the two Republican winners. I look forward to 2012 to see whether the MJS endorsement record improves or deteriorates.