Island endorsements: Johnson and Walker

On the eve of the primaries, we here at LiB have been mulling our options in the major races across the state. We've been critical of some candidates, curious about others, and supportive of a few. But now it is time to make choices, and pick those fine few we think would be most effective in moving our state and country in the right direction.

At the state level, we like Scott Walker. Although we've found room for criticism, Walker has the knowledge and skill to lead the state back from the tax hell it's become and start to right an economy that's been largely in the doldrums lately. Neumann's questionable understandings of the Constitution and weird stunts are indications of problems that run more deeply than a poorly-run insurgent campaign and point to real problems of judgment. Nor have we been entirely able to get past his weak ideas -- hand-waving about technology is not enough to close the massive budget gap that Wisconsin is currently facing.

Scott Walker has successfully led Milwaukee County. We believe that he understands what it will take to bring more jobs to Wisconsin and create an atmosphere in which these businesses can thrive. He has proven to be a reformer, not an empty suit who has the right phrases. Combined with a depth of experience that has been earned through years in government, Scott Walker is what Wisconsin -- and the Republican Party -- need for the years to come.

On the opposite side of the coin, LiB also endorses Ron Johnson.  Experience is crucial, but it can slide into complacency.  Russ Feingold has grown too comfortable in his seat, and has made the wrong choice too many times to be considered for a further term in the Senate.

Johnson echoes the better facets of the Tea Party -- focusing on less spending and more responsibility, and a government that knows its place and will not step beyond its proper boundaries. He appears willing to part ways even with Bush-era Republicans who spent hand over fist before the economic meltdown. Although I personally disagree with some of his foreign policy positions, his views on trade and domestic spending are rightly the focus of his campaign. His knowledge of what is really needed by the private sector trumps any legislative experience that Feingold may carry.