Will Tom Barrett Run?November 13, 2009
Since there is no Democrat candidate for Governor in Wisconsin, even though the WI GOP has been trying to help the Democrats find one, Tom Barrett has been facing extreme pressure to run. However, Barrett has so far not made any official statement on his candidacy.
Rumor has it, tomorrow Barrett will be making an announcement on whether or not he’ll run for Wisconsin Governor. Local Fox News has a blip about Barrett’s upcoming announcement.
Recently Dan Bice wrote a column speculating on how Barrett will govern. Apparently there is the suggestion out there that Barrett should be governing from Milwaukee because of his family and kids. This is something Barrett seems to be seriously considering. He has already state that he wouldn’t move his kids out of their current school situation and his wife just found a job in Milwaukee. The problem would be how that would play with the voters and if they think this would damage his ability to influence the legislature.
This is all just speculation on the assumption that Tom Barrett will run for Governor. I am predicting that he WILL NOT seek the office. Personally I think he is happy being the mayor of Milwaukee and he might even be doing a good job at it. He stands to real opposition and is popular in Milwaukee. Shuffling his kids around, working in Madison while living in Milwaukee and another long campaign against a Milwaukee rival may not be the best move for Tom. Living in Milwaukee certainly won’t play well with voters, especially those from the upper and western parts of the state that may still view Milwaukee as a “far away big city.”
The fact of the matter remains that being Walker is going to be tough for any democrat. He’s got the money, he’s got momentum, he’s a recognizable figure, he’s got grass roots support and a good network. That puts everything in line. It’s pretty much Walker’s to lose at this moment. He won Milwaukee county by 60% over Lena Taylor and that may scare Tom Barrett who would lose some of his Democrat base support. Not only that but considering the other candidates for Lt. Governor on the Dem side, this looks like it’s going to be a Milwaukee heavy ticket, which will certainly turn off voters from the rest of the state (Lena Taylor and Tom Barrett would probably have as good of a relationship as the current Governor and Lt. Governor). And let me add one thing in this to make things worse. It just came out that Wisconsin is a really shitty state, economically speaking. Since Democrats have controlled Wisconsin since 2003, Barrett would have to defend a lot of the legislation and governing that has gotten in this position.
I think that’s just too much for Tom to really want to take on, especially with a family. I bet that by this time tomorrow, Democrats will still be with out a candidate.