Most politicians are honest individuals trying to do the best they can. You may disagree with them, but at least you know they are trying to be honest public servants.
Then there are those like Waukesha Alderman Aaron Perry whose shameless social climbing would make most professional politicians shudder.
Last year, Perry announced he was switching his party affiliation from Democrat to Republican, even though the office he holds is non-partisan. He did it (very conveniently) right after being re-elected to another term on the Waukesha Common Council – after the voters could have passed judgment on his supposed conversion through the ballot box.
Perry’s political conversion tour (newspapers, radio) caused a number of people to wonder if he was planning on running for state Assembly again. He had run as a Republican in 2014 and finished fifth in the August Primary Election.
When Perry criticized former Lt. Governor Rebecca Kleefisch (R) on Twitter for not giving an answer about running for public office again, we asked Perry if he was going to run for the Assembly:
It was as Shermanesque a statement a politician can make.
But honesty is such a “yesterday” value, and September was so long ago. Who would remember such a blanket promise not to run for an office after criticizing another politician for not answering the question?
So, no surprise really, Perry is announcing his candidacy for the 97th Assembly District this weekend on social media.
We would have missed it except a disgusted reader tipped us off. Perhaps Perry was afraid we would remember our Twitter conversation.
Interestingly, Perry thinks he has the advantage because the Coronavirus means he won’t have to look voters in the eye as he asks them for their votes.
Yes, we agree with Perry that voters in the 97th Assembly District will have a defined choice.
The incumbent, Rep. Scott Allen (R-Waukesha), has been a positive public presence in his community both before and during his time in office. While some voters may disagree with Allen on various issues, there is no doubt that his conservative philosophy and his honest representation has been a good fit for the 97th Assembly District.
On the other hand, Perry wouldn’t even tell voters who he supported for president in 2012 when he last ran for Assembly. He has twice attempted to use the non-binding referendum process at the Waukesha Common Council (a non-partisan body) to push the Democratic Party’s agenda, once with success. He deliberately withheld his political conversion until after he was safely elected to another term. And he lied when he said he was not going to run for the Assembly.
We’re not advising the Allen campaign. But if we were, if someone proposes a candidate forum that attempts to put Allen and Perry on the same stage to answer questions, Allen should decline. After all, what is the point of debating someone like Perry who is capable of saying anything without any thought of whether it’s true?
Addendum: We found this to be funny.
Apparently Perry is warning us about the conduct of his campaign before it begins.