October 11, 2011

Jeff Fitzgerald — the speaker of the Wisconsin Assembly — will run for the U.S. Senate seat that Herb Kohl will vacate.

AP reports:
[Fitzgerald,] one of the key backers of Gov. Scott Walker's proposal curbing bargaining rights for public unions... said... he believes his role in passing that law is his largest asset heading into the race. The proposal drew protests as large as 100,000 people and made Wisconsin the center of a national fight on union rights,
"It's the No. 1 thing I've got going for me. It's fresh in people's minds," Fitzgerald said. "We did it right in Wisconsin. ... There are conservatives who think Wisconsin is ground zero for the movement."
There is one Democrat in the race so far. It's Tammy Baldwin, who walked arm-in-arm with Jesse Jackson, demonstrating strong support for the protesters.

On the Republican side, Tommy Thompson has declared his candidacy. One difference between Thompson and Fitzgerald is age. Thompson is 69. Fitzgerald turns 45 tomorrow. Thompson is taking the opportunity to run for a seat with no incumbent after he declined to challenge Russ Feingold in the 2010 elections. Back then, when the hard work of unseating Feingold lay ahead, Thompson asserted that it was time for a new generation. That bothers me.


traditionalguy said...

Tommy does business the old fashioned way, but we are in a new fashioned age.

If Thompson does not want to fight Dems, but only wants an old age hobby and sinecure for himself, then what use is he.

edutcher said...

A Walker Republican vs a machine Democrat.

Consider the possibilities.

Ann Althouse said...

Back then, when the hard work of unseating Feingold lay ahead, Thompson asserted that it was time for a new generation. That bothers me.

Old fire horse hears the bell.

mariner said...

Thompson was right; it's time for a new generation.

A. Shmendrik said...

Fitzgerald, I don't know, but the notion of a full-tilt train wreck between him and Baldwin has some appeal. Contrast in politics is good. The collective bargaining matter is a great cleaving issue, and I think it cleaves generously on the GOP side.

The old-age hobby thing Wisconsin experienced with Kohl. Rich guy satisfies his ego buying the seat every 6 years. It was a trophy piece for his mantle, he was a waste, very ineffective. Don't do that again.

Chuck66 said...

Not sure if this is healthy for the state, a Madison leftist vs a Walker-style Republican.

It will certainly be loud.

Chuck66 said...

And if it ends up being between those two, there will be about 5% of the voters who are clueless and won't decide who to vote for until close to November 2012. The parties and special interests will spend millions and millions trying to reach those few clueless voters. Thank God for satillite radio as my radio and TV will be off next year (due to nasty campaign commercials)

Carol_Herman said...


Is as if the senate is a department store catering only to a "select breed." Kohl had the lock on the seat. Now that he leaves, another "powerful" man rises up to claim the title.

I am so unimpressed, you have no idea.

The bigger question. If Jeff Fitzgerald loses ... does he go back to claim his high (speakership) in Madison?

The whole population of "talent" ... no longer comes from businessmen.

NOW. Take Anthony Weiner's old house seat. Did you see what happened, there?

The "powerful insider" decided he wanted that seat. SO HE LOST IT TO A REPUBLICAN!

How come Jeff Fitzgerald didn't see enough work, ahead, that he didn't even have to think twice about this attempted "jump?"

In November 2012, "splitting tickets," is going to turn into an American art form.

Hoosier Daddy said...

This guy is my age is named Herb? I'd have changed that to something else.

NYTNewYorker said...

Will Thompson be the spoiler if he stays in?

Sofa King said...

A race between Tommy and Tammy would be a hoot, just because of the names.

richard mcenroe said...

The politicians of the last century aren't going to fix the problems they've caused for this one. Goodbye, Tommy.

Ann Althouse said...

"A race between Tommy and Tammy would be a hoot, just because of the names."

Maybe there's someone named Timmy who can step up.

richard mcenroe said...

Tommy,Timmy, Tammy... and Teddy as the third-party candidate no one thinks has a chance...

a psychiatrist who learned from veterans said...

You know that U.S History/civics we are not supposed to get. It's a good thing Wisconsin is part of the U.S.S.R. It's fun to get this special English language news via the internet. I'd be concerned if Wisconsin was like in the U.S. But I digress. Really I do recall that Wisconsin was progressive, LaFolette you are there, and was the first to vote for something cool (I forgot what it was; besides I was adolescent at the time I learned; so maybe I wouldn't now agree with that former me). But seriously, take a deep breath; life can go on without it; it might even go better.

Carol_Herman said...

There are about 13 states that are considered "flippable." On election night? Either you will start to see the "wave" as polls close. Or it's gonna be tight all evening. "FLIPPABLE." This means these are the states being watched ... because they can go "either way."

It starts on the east coast:

New Hampshire (4)
North Carolina (15)
Pennsylvania (20)
Virginia (13)

Moves in to close an hour later:

Florida (29)

Mid-section states:

Ohio (18)
Iowa (6)
Michigan (16)
Wisconsin (10)
Minnesota ((10)
Colorado (9)


Nevada (6)
New Mexico (5)

OH, REMEMBER McCain's 2008 showing: 47%.

Pick your republican nominee ... And,you'll notice the current crop could do worse than this. With a bottom somewhere near 44%.

Does an Independent challenger, like Ross Perot ... change these odds? Sure. But what are the odds of that happening?

Gypsies will charge you money to tell the future. But all you do is part with money.

john d hyland said...

Better yet, draft Christie and you would have Timmy, Tammy and Tummy

Mitochondri-Allie said...

Fitzie just trying to keep a paycheck from the taxpayers .He sees the handwriting on the wall and after having had a taste of power and noteriety can't stand the idea of sliding back into obscurity and impotence.

sorepaw said...

He sees the handwriting on the wall

Fitzgerald wasn't subject to a recall election this year.

So what is the handwriting foretelling?

Mitochondri-Allie said...

The handwriting is telling that in 2012 when Democrats retake both bodies, and walker is out on his ear, he will no longer be speaker. I guess he MAY still have a job In the legislature IF his constituents don't vote for someone else. He won't win the US Senate seat.

Mitochondri-Allie said...

I stand corrected , the next election for the Legislature is 2014. Well he won't win the US Senate seat and when Walker is out he won't be speaker either.

ken in sc said...

Does Allie think we have a parliamentary system

Carol_Herman said...

"Tummy's" for Mitt!

I can't see Mitt winning.

And, I don't think college professors, be they "neutral" ... or more towards center-right ... actually expressing how a "flip state" will vote in November.

Other than the word "enthusiasm" showing up ahead of the crowds.

More interesting, still, is that Herman Cain went "way up" while Michele Bachmann tumbled to the ground. (Or back down to earth.)

Or whatever.

She made a big effort.

But she got overtaken by a black clown. Only in America.

Beer Ninja said...

I'm relishing the idea of one of the namesakes of Fitzwalkerstan taking on the most liberal (or close to it) member of Congress. It will be an election with true contrast to say the least.

Tommy was a good governor but his time has past for so many reasons.

As for Mark Neumann, I'm pretty sure he has lost an election every year since I was of voting age. That in addition to his bizarre, self benefiting attitude toward green energy makes him a real problem for me.

That leaves Fitzgerald. We could do a lot worse than the guy who championed Walker's collective bargaining reform and finally made Wisconsin the 49th conceal carry state after how many years?