“While other politicians rely on volume and insults to pit Americans against one another, Evers’ understated yet knowledgeable leadership has been a welcome relief for Wisconsin.”
MADISON, Wis. — In case you missed it, the Wisconsin State Journal’s Editorial Board announced their endorsement for Governor Tony Evers this weekend.
In their announcement, the State Journal’s ed board praised Gov. Evers’ leadership over the past four years — most notably highlighting his role as a check on Republican power in the State Legislature.
The board also noted Gov. Evers’ ability to deliver on some of his biggest promises, such as investing in public education, cutting costs for Wisconsinites, expanding broadband access across the state, and fixing our roads.
Read more about the Wisconsin State Journal’s endorsement for Gov. Evers:
Wisconsin State Journal: Our endorsement: Keep Gov. Tony Evers as a check on GOP extremes
Tony Evers has been a calm and responsible governor during chaotic times.
While other politicians rely on volume and insults to pit Americans against one another, Evers’ understated yet knowledgeable leadership has been a welcome relief for Wisconsin.
Evers, a Democrat, has been the only real check on Republican power at the statehouse. That’s because Republican lawmakers have repeatedly gerrymandered voting districts to give themselves an unfair lock on legislative power. They’re unlikely to lose their majorities over the coming decade even if Democrats win a wave election.
Evers has come through on some of his biggest promises, including investing in public schools, fixing our roads and expanding rural broadband. He signed more than $2 billion in income tax cuts while avoiding the chronic budget deficits of the past. Wisconsin now enjoys a financially healthy surplus that’s projected to top $5 billion by next summer.
With so many attack ads this fall claiming candidates of all stripes are “too extreme” for Wisconsin, such a charge against Evers would be laughable. He’s modest, moderate, civil, sensible and relatively consistent. You know what you’re going to get if you reelect Evers — something that can’t be said of his opponent.
The Wisconsin State Journal editorial board endorses Evers for another four-year term in the Nov. 8 election.
The race for governor features sharp contrasts.
Evers is a Plymouth native and lifelong state resident with lots of experience leading government institutions. He can speak at length, and with depth and insight, into Wisconsin’s challenges and opportunities.
Evers was a school leader for decades in Oakfield, Oshkosh, Tomah and Verona before statewide voters elected him three times to guide Wisconsin’s K-12 schools as superintendent of public instruction. Evers is indisputably the “education governor” in this race. He’s put his heart and soul into helping our children learn to succeed and improve, including support for public charters schools.
Republican nominee Tim Michels is the owner of a large construction business. He calls the Waukesha County lake community of Chenequa his home, though he owns a $17 million estate in Greenwich, Connecticut. Michels has never served in public office and was defeated by a double-digit margin when he ran for U.S. Senate in 2004.
Michels sent his children to private academies in Manhattan and Connecticut while living much of the time on the East Coast during the last decade. He appears detached from many of the struggles Wisconsin’s public schools face, such as hiring enough teachers.
On abortion, Evers is fighting in court and called a special session to try to defeat an 1849 state law banning the procedure in virtually all cases. The Republican-controlled Legislature has so far refused to act.
Women couldn’t even vote when the state’s harsh law controlling their bodies was adopted. The old law appears enforceable again because the U.S. Supreme Court overturned a constitutional right to an abortion in June.
As recently as last month, Michels offered unqualified support for the 1849 law, showing just how backward his views can be. The ancient law doesn’t even allow exceptions for rape or incest. In recent weeks, Michels has tried to moderate his position, suggesting he’d accept narrow exemptions if the Legislature sent him such a bill. But his changing statements don’t appear genuine.
During a meeting last week with our editorial board, Evers promised to sign a bipartisan bill for nonpartisan redistricting if it ever reaches his desk. The bill mirrors Iowa’s proven model for fair maps. Rural and urban counties across Wisconsin have approved advisory referendums favoring this good government solution.
Michels is making no such commitments. Though not wholeheartedly embracing it, he has played along with the bogus conspiracy theory that the 2020 election was stolen from former President Donald Trump. That’s a view that ignores elaborate recounts, independent audits and the findings of dozens of court cases. President Joe Biden won fair and square.
Though he hasn’t made his plans clear, Michels seems to want to let his partisan pals run elections in the future — a skewed proposition that Wisconsin voters should reject.
Michels has kowtowed to the juvenile and litigious Trump to secure the former president’s endorsement in the GOP primary. With Michels’ apparent approval, Trump still refuses to concede his obvious defeat, which is dangerous and unprecedented in modern American history.
Michels’ biggest boast is his business experience. He’s certainly been successful, though his family construction business started before he was born. Michels claims he’s an outsider who will “turn Madison upside down.” But his road-building firm is well connected with insiders and lobbyists.
Republicans fault Evers for spending his career in the public sector. But Michels Corporation relies heavily on government contracts. Michels appears to have benefited from public spending far more than he’s tried to limit it.
We’d like to know more about Michels — and so would voters, we suspect. He hasn’t run an energetic or grassroots campaign, relying heavily on TV ads, instead.
Evers isn’t flashy or charismatic. But as Wisconsin’s leader, he has proven he’s capable and sincere. With so much division and continuing threats to our democracy, Evers is the much safer bet for the future.
Voters should reelect Evers Nov. 8.