Monday, December 5th, 2016

Will Neumann stop the scorched earth campaign?

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I’m a believer in rough-and-tumble primary election campaigns. I not only find primary elections where everyone is nice to each other dull but they’re also unproductive. How is the voter to know for whom to vote if neither candidate draws a contrast? So, by all means, lets have a few raised voices during the primaries, sharp discussions on the issues and even the character of the candidates involved.

I once had a great deal of respect for Mark Neumann.  I supported him in his congressional races and in his race for senate.  If anything, what I had heard about his congressional races was that it was hard to get Neumann to go negative on his Democratic opponents.  Apparently he seems to relish bashing Republicans, even when the facts do not support his claims, such as his claims Walker is a bigger spender than Governor Jim Doyle.

Then there was Neumann’s bizarre behavior at the Republican Party of Wisconsin state convention.  Neumann announced prior to the convention he would not seek the endorsement of the delegates after trying to campaign for Republican support.  Then he showed up at the convention to hold a luau in a hospitality suite, presumably to court the support of the delegates.  Then the next day he shipped in a bunch of people as protestors claiming his supporters weren’t welcome in the convention hall (none of them had even applied for guest status).  After that circus left town, Neumann went to the convention floor where, as a delegate, he cast a ballot in the contest for the party’s nomination for governor.

However, when a campaign strays over into complete dishonesty and even poor taste as often as Mark Neumann’s campaign for governor, it is incumbent on us that comment on politics to object. The Neumann campaign seems to take a sadistic pleasure in finding ways to sink to new lows in campaigning, as evidenced by the Neumann’s campaign decision to try to use the death of a teenage boy for political advantage, a step even Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett wouldn’t take.  For me, this was the final straw.

While I might have considered voting for Neumann in some future election, this is no longer the case.  Neumann’s erratic behavior and the unscrupulous conduct of his campaign have rendered him to the ranks of the fringe candidates, and recent polling seems to confirm this (Neumann’s campaign praised the poll 24 hours prior ).

I’ve launched a Facebook page, Conservatives That Won’t Vote for Mark Neumann, to allow concerned conservatives to state publicly that Mark Neumann’s campaign tactics are no longer acceptable.  I have not been asked to do this by the Walker campaign. (If they had, I would not have done this.)  It was the natural result of my revulsion at the tactics of the Neumann campaign.  It’s time for Mark Neumann to end this war of falsehoods and loathsome tactics.  Perhaps by making this public statement, we can uncover whatever spark of decency that is left in Neumann so he can end this now.

James Wigderson
Waukesha, WI
7/5/2010

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