Wisconsin gubernatorial candidate Kathleen Falk (D) came out with her first ad of the recall election Monday. Now her chief rival in the May 8 primary, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, has entered the fray.
Like Falk, Barrett argues that a state that prides itself on civility has been misled. Unlike Falk, Barrett names the man he holds responsible and hopes to unseat — Gov. Scott Walker (R).
“Isn’t it time to end the civil war in Wisconsin?” Barrett asks. “Scott Walker has divided our state. And while he’s pursued his ideological agenda, last year Wisconsin lost more jobs than any state in the country. We can’t afford to have a governor who says, ‘It’s my way or the highway.’”
Barrett faced Walker in 2010 and lost by five points. Walker’s policies limiting collective bargaining sparked a backlash in the state, and that wave has given Barrett a second chance. But first he will have to overcome hostility from many of the same public unions, who resent his own budget negotiation tactics and are supporting Falk.
The general election is on June 5; Walker has been airing ads for months.