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Final Thoughts Before the Gubernatorial Primaries

Walker smilingIn every discipline, whether the sectors are private or public, work experience is a considerable factor in determining who can do the job most effectively.  This is not a matter of ideology, but empirical fact.  However, voters don't always see it that way.  If they did, John McCain would be President today.  So whether right or wrong, determining the best candidate for office will involve more than just work experience. 

Experience

Between the two candidates, Scott Walker has the most experience managing government; and this is not just any experience, it's executive experience.  Another thing to note is that Walker is the only candidate in the Republican primary who has managed a larger government (something comparable to governing a state).  This may help him hit the ground running if elected governor.

True, a savvy businessman like Neumann could bring effective management to the table, but not all businessmen make good politicians.  If Neumann were running for the CEO of a private sector business, he would be the most qualified for the job hands down, but this isn't a private sector job application.  Running a government involves dealing with unions, liberal boards, and the liberal media, something Walker understands well.

And while Walker's work experience is noteworthy, Neumann's record in Congress is rather forgettable.  Come to think of it, I don't know of one remarkable thing he did in Congress.  Well, I take that back, Neumann voted for an 8 billion dollar bill in pork spending.

Walker's public sector record is different.  He has reduced the county workforce by 20%, reduced government debt by 10%, increased the county's bond rating, and produced annual county surpluses for 8 years.  Walker's budgetary record, his management of the Mitchell International Airport, and his recent award-winning County Parks are all pluses when considering a vote onTuesday.

Some may say that this is what we should expect of a conservative politician, that Walker did what any conservative would do in his shoes.  Well, it's easier said than done in Milwaukee County - a county mind you that has never elected a Republican County Executive in its history.

The liberal machine in Milwaukee runs on all 8 cylinders, which includes an overwhelming liberal majority on the county board, a union body with a propensity to oppose conservatives, and a liberal paper that often takes up the Democrat cause.  If you doubt this, just take a look at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's recent editorials, which include support for high speed rail, early inmate release, an apologia of Governor Doyle's legacy in office, attacks on both Republican gubernatorial candidates, and a recent endorsement of JoCasta Zamarripa who is pro-choice, pro-gay marriage, and anti-school choice.

Better Chances of Beating Barrett

Another thing to take into consideration is the political viability of a candidate.  Yes, a recent Rasmussen poll showed that Mark Neumann would give Tom Barrett as much trouble as Scott Walker in the general election, but this is not a trend.  Many political insiders believe that Neumann is still the weaker candidate.

Democrats including Governor Doyle, Tom Barrett, and Mike Tate are on a continuous offensive against Scott Walker while largely ignoring Neumann.  Liberal blogs and left-leaning news outlets attack Walker like dogs while propping up Neumann as the candidate to beat.  The Rasmussen poll aside, it's hard to rationalize why Democrats would deliberately ignore the better candidate if they were truly interested in winning this November.

Viability also takes form in campaign financing.  Neumann has spent $4 million inundating the airwaves with commercials touting his conservatism.  Neumann's estimated worth, or so we are told, is $10 million.  This means he's invested virtually everything he has in the primary leaving little for the general election against Tom Barrett - this is assuming Neumann doesn't want to spend the majority of his wealth and potentially lose to Barrett anyway.  This means that if Neumann wins on Tuesday, his candidacy will be much more financially weak than Walker's.

Probably the most significant factor in terms of political viability involves Milwaukee County.  Historically, the liberal base in the Milwaukee and Dane Counties create Democrat governors.  Given the fact that Walker is popular in Milwaukee County, it may neutralize Barrett's liberal advantage, thus handing the election over to Republicans.  If Neumann wins the primary, he will have no such advantage.  But either way, the tide is on the GOP side.

Ultimately, Scott Walker is the better candidate and most capable of beating Tom Barrett in the general election.


Comments (8)
  • Zeus Rodriguez

    Is it purely by accident or was it deliberate to expound on the candidates "public" sector experience and say virtually nothing about their private sector experience?

    Just wondering...

  • Aaron M. Rodriguez

    Didn't I say that a savvy business man like Neumann might bring effective management skills to the table?

    Either way, there is not much more to expound upon. There really is no way to be certain that Neumann's success in the private sector will translate into success as a governor.

    Certainly, he knows how to manage employees efficiently, make sound profit-driven decisions, and how to adapt to the shifts in the free market. But he has yet to manage a bulky government, deal with unions that have a strong propensity to oppose conservative leadership, and roll with a liberal media that second guesses and investigates every executive decision made.

    Walker has such experience; he's been tested; and he's shown good leadership in the public sector. In my opinion, there is less risk involved in electing Walker.

  • Frank J. Tamel  - My take on the GOP Primary

    See my most recent post and the next one which will be posted on Monday at www.examiner.com/Milwaukee.

  • Zeus Rodriguez

    No offense Aaron, but the fact that you think Mark Neumann's experience as a successful educator and business man is of dubious value to being a good Governor shows your lack of historical political acumen.

    Reagan had Zero political "experience" before becoming governor of California. Bottom line, Walker may ultimately be a better choice for Governor but it's not because of his work experience...

  • Aaron M. Rodriguez

    Zeus,

    You're putting words into my mouth. I said that not all good businessmen make good politicians. I don't think this statement was unreasonable or unclear.

    To your second point, inexperience is not always a problem. The examples you provided demonstrated that point.

    My line of thinking is this: both candidates would make good governors. Neumann is a successful small business owner who understands how to be an effective leader. This is certainly an asset for leadership-based positions.

    Walker is a successful politician - successful at getting elected (something Neumann lacks) and successful at doing the right thing while holding office. Like Neumann, Walker is a proven leader. But unlike Neumann, Walker has demonstrated he can endure a liberal machine and come out on top each time.

  • VOTE WALKER

    Zeus, what exactly do you mean by saying that Aaron lacks "historical political acumen"?

    I've been around the block a few years more than Aaron has (so have seen and been involved in a few more elections) I have the same opinion as him. Are you saying all Walker supporters lack "historical political acumen"? What will you say when Walker wins the primary?

    Are you also ok with the negative and lie filled campaign that Mark Neumann has run? This has highlighted his lack of character and has shown he doesn't deserve to be Governor. When there are two candidates with very similar views on most conservative issues, I can't for the life of me why you would support a guy who ran a campaign like he has.

  • scot @ OWN  - c'mon

    aaron --
    zeus did not "put words in your mouth." We all know it's Walker who puts the words in your mouth.

    Was your major in college "gag-inducing sycophancy"? If it t'was, you most assuredly got your money's worth.

    scot @ OWN

  • Aaron M. Rodriguez

    Scott,

    Do you ever post anything that isn't satiated with ad hominem or overdone with hyperbole?

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