“You’re really doing a good job, Scott.”
Tommy Thompson is out on the hustings (whatever those are) campaigning in a red sweater for Scott Walker’s re-election as governor for, really, the first time in four elections (including the recall). What does that tell you? Answer: That Walker is in trouble.
O.K., not in Washington Post trouble, which wrongly implied it’s all over. It’s not. Marquette Law School is always on the money (except for Trump. Everyone missed Trump). Marquette has Walker up by a point. Well within the margin of error so it’s close, yes. But over? No way!
So calling on Tommy Thompson is the smart move. Even state government workers love Tommy. And no one can work a room like Tommy T, Wisconsin’s happy warrior. He’ll name check every one in the room, squeeze their hands — and later on — call with condolences at the loss of a family member. That kind of retail politician comes around once in a generation.
Walker, on the other hand … At the Republican National Convention in Cleveland two years ago, Walker hosted a party one night aboard a riverboat on the Cuyahoga River. Swear to God he spent the entire night talking to the same two people off in a corner. That burns me to this day. You pays good money to attend these conventions, you want your face time.
Good on camera
So Scott Walker suffers by comparison to my Tommy. Then again, Walker is Mr. warmth and personality when compared to his predecessor, the remote and unlovable Jim Doyle. In any event, the camera loves Scott Walker, who is one of the more photogenic governors in my memory (which goes back, barely, to Vernon Thompson in the 1950s.). Walker is relaxed and natural in front of a camera, whether at the podium or on a sofa in a 30-second TV spot. Tommy always played hot, in the McLuhan sense.
This is unfair, but Tony Evers presents like those 98-pound weaklings that used to get sand kicked in their faces in those old Charles Atlas advertisements.
So, Scott Walker needs to improve his likability metric. (Not that the Squire knows anything about likability, dammit!) Especially when Democrats are painting him as the schoolyard bully who steals your lunch money (and makes you contribute to your gold-plated pension and health insurance). This spot may help. The governor appears with his recently widowed mother who, like all mothers, pats her boy on the hand and whispers “You’re really doing a good job, Scott.”
Elections are won this way. You have to like the person as much as his/her policies. Usually. For most people. Once upon a time, anyway.
(The Squire in me would like to think that the campaign cut out the next sentence where Mom Walker adds, “not like that Prick, Tony EH-vers! UGH!” Likeability is over-rated. Just ask Donald Trump.)
No snowflakes in Mosinee
In case issues DO matter, Tony Evers drank the Kool Aid with Bernie Sanders Monday when he promised the kids at UW-Milwaukee to raise the minimum wage to $15. “We’re going to $15 an hour, minimum. Minimum.” More here.
That should get the college students all jazzed up! They’ll have something for which to look forward after graduation. $15/hour minimum wage jobs. .
BTW, what do Paul Jadin, Ed Wall, and Peter Bildsten have in common? Answer: three things.
1) Former members of Walker’s cabinet (respectively, Commerce, Corrections, and Financial Institutions).
2) They are all blasting their old boss and supporting Evers.
3) They were all fired or left “on bad terms.”
Ed Wall lets Lincoln Hills boil over and HE blames Walker? Jadin couldn’t keep track of WEDC loans and HE blames the governor?
Speaking of unlikeable, Donald Trump is stumping for Walker, Leah Vukmir, and company in Mosinee tonight (10-24-18) (Mosinee is Wisconsin’s version of flyover country.) Say what you will, Trump’s mega-rallies seem to energize. Even longtime Never-Trumpers Ted Cruz in Texas and Dean Heller in Nevada are welcoming Trump. The President’s appearances are paying off in better polling numbers. Heller, in particular, was once toast. Not any more. (“Heller proves resilient against Blue Wave.”)
Two predictions: 1) Walker wins. 2) Rachel Maddow cries election night.