July 6, 2012
I am rich. Therefore you can trust me!
When Herb Kohl ran for the Senate his theme was about as simplistic as it comes.
"No one's Senator but yours." It was clever and effective. He was saying, I am so wealthy that I will not even think about self-dealing. No lobbyist need call; special interests will not be welcome in my office; I am trustworthy because I am rich! A lot of people bought the line, and Herb is probably the most popular public official in Wisconsin.
So what happened in the 1988 campaign? Herb avoided debates, avoided tough issues, funded his own campaign and won easily. And he remained in office, as far as we know, for four terms. What did he accomplish? Not much. Did he show up for work? Who knows? Indeed, one is hard-pressed to name a single piece of legislation or cause bearing his name. We saw Feingold-McCain but not Kohl-McCain. What is the point of seeking one of the most important jobs in America if you are not planning to do something important? Mo Udall said some people just want to be called Senator; some want to do things that will help people.
So here we are facing an election to replace Herb Kohl. What are the Republican choices? A guy named Hovde whose net worth is over $50 million. He takes the No One's Senator But Yours another step into the abyss. Hovde tells us that we can trust him because he made outrageous amounts of money as a hedge fund manager. Message seems to be, "Hey, I know how the system works to favor wealthy people. Ride with me oh party of wealth!"
There is also corporate Tommy Thompson who has made millions and millions of dollars by serving on the boards of those he once regulated. His theme seems to be, "Vote for me. I can't get any more corrupt than I am so you can trust me! Besides, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel likes me."
What a mess we have created.
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I've heard of Herb Kohl. You mean, he was a US senator from Wisconsin? Wow!
We have an inept and rich guy in the senate now. Dare we elect one more?
I'm very worried about Tammy's chances. Wisconsin is in trouble, but most of us already know this.
The dollar doesn't buy much these days unless it's an elected official. Most people supporting the wealthy and the ineptitude their money buys seem to be satisfied with whatever scraps are leftover and brushed off the table. Why is this? Answer this question and maybe we can figure out where our democratic form of government went wrong.
-Pietr Haikuu | Hurley, Wis. | July 6, 2012
This is the first time I have ever seen you be critical of Kohl. Congratulations on being about 24 years late to the party.
Only now do you realize what a mistake it was to elect him? Just think what an effective advocate could have accomplished in this time.
-Michael Anderson | Madison, Wi | July 6, 2012