Not quite as big of a political year as in the past (aren’t we all grateful?) – so what will the future look like for us political junkies?
Governor: Scott Walker has a 47-41 lead in the ballot, 49-44 approval rating, and a 54-40 lead in “right track” (Marquette Law). As long as he doesn’t close any bridges, he should be re-elected (again) over challenger Mary Burke.
Attorney General: Will Brad Schimel avenge the defeat of the last Waukesha DA who attempted to gain the top law enforcement prize in the state? He has nailed down the endorsement of 66 DA’s and Sheriffs, and the existing AG. If the election were today, he’d have the organizational win over Ismael Ozanne, Jon Richards, and Susan Happ, but the election is not today. Fun Fact – Schimel could be the first Waukesha DA to become a Republican AG.
State Senate: Currently GOP 18-15 DEM. For those who judge all things by Act 10, that is 17-16 (Schultz voted No). But Dale Schultz is retiring in SD 17 because while he has under $5,000 cash on hand, GOP challenger Howard Marklein has over $142,000 Cash on Hand. While the district is D+4, Marklein was re-elected in a district that went almost 60% for Obama.
Schultz’s retirement now makes the SD-21 GOP Primary the #1 primary in the state on August 12th. With incumbent John Lehman going for the Democrat nod for Lieutenant Governor, odds are that the winner of the Van Wangaard / Jonathan Steitz primary will win the seat.
If the D+2 seat stays with Kathleen Vinehout, and the R+4 seat stays with Mike Ellis (and all the other safer seats stay with their parties), the Act 10 vote will likely go from 17-16, to 19-14. This would tie post-2010, but replacing Schultz with Vinehout, and potentially with Steitz instead of Van, yield an even more conservative Senate than in 2010.
And all this would reshape the current list of the Most Powerful Politicians in Wisconsin….