If Leinenkugel's in, Tommy's out of Senate race

Dick Leinenkugel just resigned as Wisconsin's commerce secretary because he plans to run for the Senate as a Republican against Russ Feingold, WisPolitics reports.

If that's true, Tommy Thompson is out of the race, and Leinenkugel knows it. (His sister Kate is married to Mark Bugher, a Thompson confidant and booster.)

So the Republican primary would be a three-way affair, with Leinenkugel the RINO (Repub in Name Only) in the race against conservatives Terrence Wall and Dave Westlake, who have not gotten much traction.

How will the Tea Partiers in the GOP like a guy who's been in Jim Doyle's cabinet, oversaw the stimulus money, and champions Doyle's climate change bill?

More at 11 -- or whenever we get around to it.

2nd Amendment Foundation And Black Community Agree To Joint Gun March, Rally

New York (FNS)—In an effort to help dispel concerns of racism, Terri Stocke, President of the Second Amendment March, agreed to coordinate with members of the Reverend Al Sharpton’s National Action Network and the Reverend Jesse Jackson’s Rainbow/Push Coalition in an effort to encourage more members of the Black community to bear arms and to carry them publicly.

In return, members of the Black community have agreed to flood the 2nd Amendment March, scheduled for April 19, 2010, in Washington, DC, with hundreds of thousands of heavily armed residents of Chicago’s South Side and New York City’s Harlem and Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhoods.

“We hope that the Black community understands that 2nd Amendment rights apply to all Americans” Ms. Stocke told the crowd outside Mr. Sharpton’s offices.

St. Norbert-WPR poll predicts 99% voter turnout in November -- and flying pigs

There's a big Republican surge in Wisconsin, if you believe the St. Norbert-Wisconsin Public Radio poll. I don't.

The poll's serious problems are not limited to the US Senate numbers, which got our attention previously.

The numbers for the governor's race are even crazier. Asking 400 Wisconsin residents -- not voters or likely voters, just anyone who answered the telephone -- the survey finds Scott Walker and Mark Neumann in a dead heat in the Republican primary, and either Neumann or Walker killing Democrat Tom Barrett in the general election matchup.

Here's one quick measure of how unreliable those numbers are: According to the poll, 93 per cent of the people interviewed plan to vote in the Republican primary for governor, and all but 1% of them plan to vote in the general election.

Remember, these are not people on a voter list they called; just random Wisconsin citizens. And 99% of them plan to vote in November.

Remarkable, since the highest turnout race in memory was the 2008 presidental, when 70% of Wisconsinites voted.

Non-candidate Thompson might win -- if you count non-voters

The latest in a long series of meaningless political poll coverage by the Wisconsin media, courtesy of the Associated Press:

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A new poll suggests that if Republican Tommy Thompson decides to get into the U.S. Senate race, he would defeat Democratic incumbent Russ Feingold.

The St. Norbert College Survey Center Poll released Tuesday shows Thompson with 45 percent support compared with 33 percent for Feingold.

...Terrence Wall and Dave Westlake are running as Republicans but Thompson has flirted with getting into the race.

The telephone poll of 400 Wisconsin residents was done between March 23 and March 31 and has a margin of error of plus of minus 5 percentage points. It was sponsored by Wisconsin Public Radio.

A new technique -- interviewing non-voters about a non-candidate. (UPDATE: They didn't even ask about the two GOP candidates who actually are running, David Westlake and Terrence Wall.)

A recent poll by Daily Kos/Research 2000 had Feingold beating Thompson.

What's the difference?

Wikileaks reveals Iraq Coverup

5th April 2010 10:44 EST WikiLeaks has released a classified US military video depicting the indiscriminate slaying of over a dozen people in the Iraqi suburb of New Baghdad -- including two Reuters news staff. Reuters has been trying to obtain the video through the Freedom of Information Act, without success since the time of the attack

. The video, shot from an Apache helicopter gun-site, clearly shows the unprovoked slaying of a wounded Reuters employee and his rescuers. Two young children involved in the rescue were also seriously wounded.

I'm putting this out here partly because the Wikileaks web site seems to be inundated with traffic at the moment.

Collateral Murder - Wikileaks - Iraq

Too mean to Van De Water? It was too nice

Over in the Wigderson Library and Pub, a commenter wonders why us libs are always picking on innocent conservatives like Linda Van De Water, the train wreck who seems about to be elected an appeals court judge.

That made me realize that my previous piece about her was too kind. I forgot to mention that the bar association in her home county, who know her much better than I do, rated her as unqualified.The Journal Sentinel reports:

... [I]n the race for District 2 Court of Appeals, where two sitting circuit court judges are running, Paul Reilly received the highly qualified-qualified rating from 93% of those completing a survey. He was rated unqualified by 3%, and 4% stated no opinion.

His opponent, Linda Van De Water, was rated highly qualified or qualified by 36% of lawyers completing the survey and unqualified by 44.5%. Another 19.5% had no opinion.

Things Aren't Always As They Seem

“Reduce your prescription drugs costs now!” the headline screamed. The fine print mentioned millions of dollars in savings because pharmacies would not have to meet state requirements to mark up drugs by 9%.

Citizens were asked to call their senators and show support for a bill to lower drug costs.

The bill is being pushed by Wal-Mart and other organizations have been recruited to support it.

And the real story is not as advertised.

Seventy years ago, Wisconsin passed a “predatory pricing’ law to keep large companies from forcing smaller competitors out of business. The law prohibits selling goods below cost to force a competitor out of business. 

Tony Huppert drove from Spring Valley to Madison for a hearing last week to testify against the Wal-Mart bill that would allow prescription drugs to be sold in Wisconsin below cost.

 “I have been in business for forty years,” Tony said. “There are only two reasons to sell below cost. One is to go broke. The second one is to eliminate competition…Trust your instincts; businesses do not sell below costs out of the goodness of their heart.”

Simple anti-terrorism language too much for legislators to cope with in energy bill

It's a well-established fact that nuclear reactors at 103 power plants in the US are suseptible to terrorist attack. It's one of those inconvenient truths we try not to think about, especially if we live near one of the sites.

The issue surfaced again recently when it was learned that an Al Qaeda suspect had worked at five nuclear sites.

The Center for Defense Information says nuclear waste could become an ingredient for a so-called "dirty bomb":

The most accessible nuclear device for any terrorist would be a radiological dispersion bomb. This so-called 'dirty bomb' would consist of waste by-products from nuclear reactors wrapped in conventional explosives, which upon detonation would spew deadly radioactive particles into the environment. This is an expedient weapon, in that radioactive waste material is relatively easy to obtain. Radioactive waste is widely found throughout the world, and in general is not as well guarded as actual nuclear weapons.

It's accumulating in Wisconsin at Point Beach and Kewaunee. And if pro-nuclear forces have their way with the Clean Energy Jobs Act, Wisconsin could be living with growing stockpiles of high-level radioactive waste for a long time to come.

Who butters Tommy's bread?

Tommy Thompson says he has so many clients these days that he can't even remember them all. But it's pretty clear that Tommy knows who's paying his salary while he ponders a race for the US Senate.

Thompson, appearing on Neil Cavuto's show on Fox, said there's a major problem with the new health care bill "that's gotta be fixed or it will have a detrimental impact." On his clients, that is.

Thompson is shilling for corporations that now can double dip by providing prescription drug plans for their retirees under Medicare Part D.

The scheme, cooked up by George W. Bush and then-Secretary Thompson of HHS, gives corporations a subsidy of $1,300 per retiree for continuing to offer the drug plans. But here's the kicker: It also lets the corporations claim the subsidy as a tax deduction. This sounds like I must have it wrong, I know, so here's an explanation from a credible source.

Sly in the Morning, in a segment on his Madison radio show outed Tommy and played clips from his appearance with Cavuto.

What's Dave Obey done for Minnesota lately?

Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty has endorsed Sean Duffy, the Ashland County DA running against Rep. Dave Obey for the House of Representatives.

That should be useful, since many of the people living along the border think they live in Minnesota anyway.

Suggested slogan:  "Duffy will do more for Minnesota."

That's a Duffy lapel pin at left.

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