Sunday, October 6, 2019

Lesser-known markers help explain WI GOP Sen. Ron Johnson

I see a lot of questions on social media that fall into the category of who is this guy, anyway? afterJohnson's self-inflicted time in the impeachment barrel this week.

Everyone has a favorite Johnsonism, from sunspots causing climate change, to health care and food being privileges, not rights, to Obamacare rating as the worst threat to freedom in his lifetime - - but a few perhaps lesser-known markers help explain where Johnson came from politically, what moves him and how he's chosen to operate:

* He said he decided on his eventual 2010 Tea Party run for the US Senate seat held by Democrat Russ Feingold because he was touched by a Fox News commentator's plea for a candidate

During a press conference announcing his candidacy, Johnson explained: “I was sitting at home watching Fox News and Dick Morris came on and said 'Hey, you know, Feingold is vulnerable. You know, if you're a rich guy from Wisconsin, step up to the plate.' I kind of looked at (my wife) Jane and said 'is he, like, talking to me?'”
* What may have been his first public defining ideological reveal was a statement he read before a Wisconsin legislative committee opposing extending the period during which child assault victims could sue for damages.

Here is the video 

in which then-business owner Johnson sided with employers.

And, separately, here is a link to a Journal Sentinel Dan Bice story which explained how Johnson came to make these remarks: 
"I believe it is a valid question to ask whether the employer of a perpetrator should also be severely damaged, or possibly destroyed, in our legitimate desire for justice."
Johnson had little to say about the victims of sexual abuse in his testimony. His was largely a financial concern....
"This bill could actually have the perverse effect of leading to additional victims of sexual abuse," he argued, "if individuals, recognizing that their organizations are at risk, become less likely to report suspected abuse."
So it was not completely surprising years later when it was learned that Senator Johnson had failed report to authorities a female staff member's complaint about being groped and assaulted by a GOP state legislator at a Republican fund-raising event - - a matter which became public after more allegations were made by additional victims against the same legislator which led to his arrest and conviction.

All of which is reprised in this 2017 post. 

But I'm not trying to paint Johnson as some sort of empathy-free politician, because this recent headline shows he has a heart.
US Sen. Ron Johnson says he feels sorry for President Trump


Anonymous said...

Rojo, Rojo, Rojo.

Maybe you can tell people you were actually born in Minnesota.

What a major-ass horrible performance on MTP.

Memo to Rojo's PR person: keep this guy away from the media. Unless you want Trump in prison sooner rather than later.

MadCityVoter said...

The funny think is that RoJo began the interview by thanking Chuck Todd for giving such a fair and unbiased introduction. Which sure wasn't what the Senator (and I use the term loosely) was spitting and sputtering by the end! Quite a performance. Can we recall him yet?

Tom Strini said...

If only Jane had said, "Not with my money you don't, you goofball. Now go and pretend to be a businessman."