On Wisconsin

Saturday night RNC Chairman (and former Wisconsin GOP chairman) Reince Priebus will share a stage with Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker and GOP Presidential nominee-apparent Mitt Romney at the Lincoln/Reagan Waukesha County GOP event. Those of us who watched Priebus shuffle Walker through the Wisconsin GOP gubernatorial primary would do well to make note of the public event. It’s the Holy Grail of national primary moments right there at the Country Springs hotel. My backyard. Who’d’ve thunk it?

In addition to calling your attention to what I’ve already proclaimed an early acceptance of the nomination by Romney, I want you to consider how Wisconsin might play for the general election. Wisconsin is still considered a swing state. We landed three red branches of state government in November 2010 remember? But the state voted for Obama in 2008. It’s been speculated for a while that Paul Ryan might be a suitable vice-presidential running mate for Romney. He’s a congressman and a VP nod might move him up the ladder more quickly for a presidential bid of his own should Romney fall short in November.

But what if Walker was the VP contender instead? The decision would still deliver Wisconsin, but it would also sweep Walker away from the union-directed recall frenzy at a most opportune time. A Walker pick would certainly balance the perception that Mitt Romney is actually a Democrat who leans to the right as Walker is loved around the country for his Act 10 chutzpah. Choosing Walker over Ryan also lets Ryan put his head down and run through what really need to be some important changes in the U.S. budgeting habits.

Consider the event is the Saturday before the Wisconsin presidential primary. Consider Wisconsin is the state that will put Romney past the post for the nomination. Consider that Reince Priebus is not one to leave such public displays to chance.

I’ll be popping up a local endorsement later today. See you then.


  1. Walker would be too polarizing as a VP choice. It’s looking like he might actually lose to Kathleen Falk, which I wouldn’t have believed 2 months ago. Romney is trailing badly in the general election polls, and he needs someone who can appeal to a broad audience.

  2. The Lorax says:

    It will never happen. You sure like to create these fantasy narratives. But think for a moment about three Obama states that are going to be instrumental in securing a Romney victory: PA, IN, OH.

    The rollback of collective bargaining rights is VERY unpopular in these three states, perhaps even moreso than Wisconsin. In Ohio especially–which is the one Romney will really need.

    Walker brings pretty much a net negative to a national ticket. No nominee in their right mind would pick the person who is literally the most controversial governor in the nation, and who’s presence on the ticket would cause Democrats to come out en masse to vote against Romney/Walker.

    Not to mention he doesn’t have a college degree, and his experience as governor only spans less than 2 years.

    But I’d love to see Republicans make another stupid, devastating choice for VP. Palin doomed McCain this time. Too bad Romney’s already doomed.

  3. Randy in Richmond says:

    I would submit Palin helped McCain rather than doom him. It was his inept, middle of the road campaign that did him in.

  4. J. Strupp says:


    You ever see a chart of McCain’s approval rating from the time he nominated Palin until the day of the 2008 Presidential election?

  5. I think it’s just time to admit that, as they always do, the GOP overplayed their hand. They were elected in 2010 not because people supported them, but because people were against what the Democrats did. Lorax is right about Walker. Unless Romney wants to challenge Mondale’s record in 1984, he’ll stay away. Likely he’ll manage about as many electoral votes as Mike Dukakis instead. Obama’s numbers are back above water, and Romney is cratering. He’s losing every swing state, and Obama is approaching 50%. It’s over. The only chance to keep Obama in check is a favorable SCOTUS ruling in June, and that’s only if the Democrats don’t regain the House and a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate. I think both are reasonable possibilities in 2014 (it is mathematically impossible in 2012 for the Democrats to achieve the latter). If they do, they’ll ram through single payer. Meanwhile, hopefully Kennedy, Scalia, and Thomas can make it until January 2017.

  6. Well we certainly couldn’t label you an eternal optimist today, could we KPOM. Democrats regain the House? Really?

    No, divided government is here to stay for a while. The 2008 trifecta left us dazed and confused. It will take a while to get over it.

  7. Randy in Richmond says:

    Well, let’s just call the Presidential election off and have another coronation.

  8. Randy in Richmond says:

    Oh, I looked at Real Clear Politics ratings before making my comment. From the time Palin gave her acceptance speech on September 3, 2008 until election day McCain lost 1.8 points to Obama on the RCP averaged polling data. Considering the unprecedented negative media barrage focused on Palin and the inept campaign McCain ran, I really thought the spread would be larger. She didn’t hurt him.

    And McCain’s Approval Rating is just that–his.

  9. Look at the latest polls. Wisconsin is solidly in the Win column for Obama in November. By June, you could have Kathleen Falk as your governor and a Democratically-controlled state senate.

    I don’t think the House will flip in 2012, but 2014 is a possibility if Obama finds himself in a best-of-all-worlds scenario next year (taking credit for everything good and blaming everything bad on the GOP). There is now almost no chance the GOP will pick up the Senate, which means at least 2 and likely 4 more years of Harry Reid as majority leader, which of course means 4 more years of rubber-stamping the additional “flexibility” that Obama will have with Russia.

  10. When one suggests “look at the latest polls” perhaps one could provide links to those polls referenced. 🙂

    I see there’s no sunshine in your corner of the office this morning, either KPOM. 😉

  11. Well there goes that invented theory. Word now is that Santorum will be at the evening GOP event as well. The plot thickens…

    I really thought yesterday this was Priebus’ way of shutting down the primary. That’s pretty much what Paul Ryan said this morning, too, as he endorsed Romney.

    Someone let me know what happens!

  12. Randy in Richmond says:

    No chance the Republicans will pick up the Senate? You’re kidding, right? They may not but they have a very good shot at doing so. It is presently 53–47.

    McCaskill(D) will lose.
    Conrad, a Democrat, will be replaced by a Republican in ND.
    In Montana it’s a toss up for Tester’s(D) seat.
    WV could be close.
    Who Knows in Wisconsin. Nelson in Nebraska very vulnerable.
    New Mexico is a toss up for Bingaman’s(D) seat.
    Brown’s(D) seat in Ohio–a toss up.
    Right now Allen with small lead in Virginia.
    Another Brown ahead in Mass.
    Nelson(D) in Florida is vulnerable.

    On the Republican side Ensign and Hatch best look out.

    There’s a lot of wishful thinking on this site based on polls of Registered Voters–not likely voters–and some where the candidates aren’t even chosen.
    And the Republicans are after each other in the primaries so their polling is really not reliable.

    The doomsday talk here worries me not at all.

  13. The Lorax says:

    LMAO, you’re in a dream world, Rand. Here’s my honest assessment (not my hopes):

    McCaskill (D-MO) is a true tossup. Lean R?
    Conrad (Open-ND) is a tossup. Lean R slightly more?
    Tester (D-MT) will be a D hold.
    Manchin (D-WV) will be a D hold.
    Kohl (Open-WI) will be a D hold. Obama GOTV will secure that seat.
    Bingaman (D-NM) will be a D hold.
    Brown (D-OH) will be a sure D hold.
    Webb (Open-VA) is hard to say. Polling has been back and forth. Recent polls I saw showed Kaine pulling away. I think Kaine will win with Obama GOTV.
    Brown (R-MA) will be close. Tossup.
    Nelson (D-FL) will be a sure D hold. Obama effect again, here.
    Nelson (Open-NE) will be a R pickup.

    Your analysis is also off in a few areas. Ensign is no longer a senator. That would be Dean Heller in NV who is running for that seat against Rep. Shelley Berkley (D-NV) which will be a tossup.

    Also, Nelson (D-NE) isn’t vulnerable as you say – he’s retiring! Bob Kerrey, the former NE senator, is running for that seat. He will lose.

    Which is to say, there are three seats (at most) I think the Republicans could pick up, with some chance of Democrat pickup. You failed to mention the Maine senate race, where everyone thinks Angus King will win and caucus with the Democrats. That’s -1 to Republicans and +1 to Democrats as well.

    Democrats will hold the Senate. I’m willing to bet someone lunch on that one.

  14. Randy in Richmond says:

    Thanks for your corrections Lorax. I meant to say Nelson’s seat in Neb. is vulnerasble. I still think it’s very doable and we’ll just wait and see. As you know 7 months in politics is a lifetime.

  15. I wouldn’t be so sure about the Kohl seat, and Angus King’s entry angered the Democrats because they were worried that he would split the left-leaning vote. That’s partly why he declared that he’s a Democrat in all but name.

  16. The Cook Political Report has HI, NV, NM, MT, ND, MO, WI, VA, MA, and ME is tossups (Republicans currently hold 3 of those, Dems 7). It also has OH, MI, and FL in play, but leaning Dem. Cook assumes 1 sure Republican takeover in NE.

    Assuming the Dems hold those 3, the Republicans need 5 (if Romney wins) or 6 (if Obama wins) of the 10 that are tossups to win the Senate.

    And for what it’s worth, futures market intrade.com says the Republicans have a 63% chance of controlling the Senate.

  17. If Romney picks Walker, I’ll cut off my left testicle. I would not be surprised at all if Romney picks Paul Ryan. I also would not be surprised at all if Romney picks a woman (his lieutenant governor in MA was female and it seems like women have gotten a lot of his endorsements in the past… Nikki Haley, Meg Whitman, Carly Fiorina, etc.)…Susana Martinez, the Latina Governor of New Mexico would be a fine choice.

  18. Well Ryan, you win the make-Cindy-spit-her-coffee-on-her-computer-screen award for this week. I guess you feel strongly about the matter. 😉

    He’ll need a candidate to invigorate the South. Nikki Haley would be an interesting choice. Thanks for mentioning it.

  19. Randy in Richmond says:

    The political slant to your anatomic statement is not missed. Keep hanging in there. 🙂

  20. The Lorax says:

    Interesting as in tax fraud interesting – Nikki Haley has too much baggage.

  21. Rumors your new hobby Lorax?

  22. Randy in Richmond says:

    It’s less than a rumor-it’s false. The source was an anonymous blog.


    But, if the false allegation had been true and the Obama method of choosing appointments had been followed, her best position would have been Secretary of the Treasury–replacing Timothy Geither.

  23. The Lorax says:

    Aw, shucks.

  24. I may be crazy, but at least I have company. This tweet came through last night:

    Lee is Mordecai Lee from UWM.