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Jon Plumer is straightforward and disarming in his bid to become the 42nd Assembly District’s next state representative in the special election June 12.

“What is the problem? How can I fix it?” is his approach to public service.

He’s a moderate Republican, small businessman, town board supervisor and community booster in Lodi who pledges to work hard to forge agreement across the partisan divide at the state Capitol.

“Great ideas don’t come from one party,” he told our State Journal editorial board last week during a joint meeting with his opponent, Democrat Ann Groves Lloyd, also of Lodi.

Plumer’s open mind and strong priorities — including fixing Wisconsin’s roads, expanding rural broadband and supporting nonpartisan redistricting — make him the best choice June 12 for voters in the 42nd District who will fill a vacant seat previously held by Keith Ripp.

The State Journal editorial board endorses Plumer in the race.

The 42nd District includes most of Columbia, northern Dane, northwestern Dodge, the western corner of Fond du Lac and southern Marquette and Green Lake counties. The oddly drawn district — which was gerrymandered by top Republicans to protect Ripp in what had previously been one of the most competitive seats in the state — now favors Republicans. But Democrats have been defeating Republicans this year in surprising places as many voters across the political spectrum object to the crude and chaotic behavior of Republican President Donald Trump.

So the upcoming special election for the 42nd District seat is drawing lots of outside money and negative ads.

Yet we’re happy to report that the hostile tone to the political ads in this race doesn’t match the spirit of the two candidates. Both of these Lodi residents are good people, heavily involved in their communities, civil and respectful of each other.

“I don’t know how to tweet,” Plumer says, when asked about the Republican president’s bad habit of attacking others on Twitter.

Given that the 42nd District is shaped to favor Republicans, it’s encouraging to hear Plumer’s unequivocal support for a nonpartisan process of drawing legislative district lines following the 2020 census. The owner of a karate school in Lodi, he also understands how government decisions affect the economy and hard-working people.

Groves Lloyd, who retired last week as a UW-Madison academic adviser, is polished and smart. She shares Plumer’s priorities of fixing roads and adopting fair maps. But her politics lean too far left for this district. She offered a vague response, for example, when asked if she is a socialist.

Plumer is a better fit with more promise as a uniter who can listen to and work with anyone. Voters should support his bid June 12.

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