Over the weekend, Scot Milfred a editorial page writer for the Wisconsin State Journal outlined in a column that if Tom Barrett does not run for Governor, the Democrats will be down to what they call their “B” team in 2010.
Scot Milfred’s thoughts may be leaning true as right now the word I hear from many people is that Tom Barrett is not leaning towards not running for Governor for many reasons. In my recent interview with John Fund with the Wall Street Journal, Mr. Fund told me that Tom Barrett has more political capital working against him then for him. This is attributed by the growing opposition by legislators and special interests to Mayor Barrett’s plans to have mayoral control over the leadership of Milwaukee Public Schools.
Second, the Mayor is not seeing many allies in his corner if he intends to run for Governor. State Representatives like Barbara Toles, and prominent County Supervisors including Marina Dimitrijevic and Elizabeth Coggs-Jones have been throwing their support behind Barbara Lawton. Also, the Milwaukee County Democrat Party Chairwoman Martha Love is not throwing her support behind Barrett showing that the Mayor is at a serious disadvantage. It is undecided which way the Godmother of School Choice , Rep, Annettee Polly Williams or School Choice Advocate Rep. Jason Fields will go in who to support for Governor. Also, add on the constant onslaught of attacks from Milwaukee Area Civil RIghts groups against the Mayoral takeover plan and there is evidence showing that Tom Barrett would not have the support in the City of Milwaukee to field a winning Governor’s bid.
Also, add on the fact a costly Democratic primary would not do Barrett any good as he may have popular appeal in Outstate Wisconsin, but with the growing opposition to the MPS takeover would hurt his chances to win the Democratic nomination. Mayor Barrett’s handling on the Milwaukee City budget has recieved a lot of flack from front line firefighters. This could come back to haunt him if he wins the Democratic nomination. Mayor Barrett could look at what has happened in Virginia with their Democratic primary for Governor this year. A costly and expensive primary divided their party up and their nominee Creigh Deeds is seeing his chances of winning out of reach. The same result may happen in Wisconsin if Barrett decides to run in which the MPS issue has already divded Democrats in Wisconsin.
These facts show that Democrats will be relegated to a top-ticket candidate who will only have the appeal for the progressive sect of the Wisconsin Democratic Party. A Lawton candidacy will give the opportunity for many moderates and blue dogs to cross party lines to support Scott Walker.