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As I See It

A strange start to U.S. Senate campaign



The race for a U.S. Senate seat in Wisconsin between incumbent Tammy Baldwin and challenger Eric Hovde is getting interesting. For a long time, it appeared Baldwin, a Democrat, would not have a Republican challenger. Hovde just got into the race weeks ago and is already placing big advertising buys to promote his campaign. It started when Hovde filmed a clip swimming shirtless in a cold Madison lake to try to prove he is a real Wisconsinite. Although I don’t know many people in the state who spend the winter jumping in ice cold lakes. Democrats are trying to portray Hovde as a Californian, with little ties to the state, and as a rich banker. That seems to be trying to make a mountain out of a molehill. If Hovde got rich in the banking business, good for him. To counter that, Hovde has unveiled a new ad promising to donate his entire $174,000 salary to charity if elected. That is a nice gimmick, but doesn’t seem to mean much. After all, according to a report in Politico, Hovde’s investment firm owned $74 million in investments in insurance companies based in Bermuda where they were exempt from paying federal income taxes. That means he likely avoided paying millions in taxes to the U.S. government. If he really wants to make a difference, he could pay what he should have owed in taxes, and keep his annual salary.

Scott Robert Shaw serves as WIZM Program Director and News Director, and delivers the morning news on WKTY, Z-93 and 95.7 The Rock. Scott has been at Mid-West Family La Crosse since 1989, and authors Wisconsin's only daily radio editorial, "As I See It" heard on WIZM each weekday morning and afternoon.

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  1. Greg Symons

    March 20, 2024 at 6:21 am

    It always bothers me when someone complains about someone else not paying enough taxes. Most people I know do everything they can to pay as little tax as possible. Democrats have always been the leaders in bigotry. They lead the way thru the KKK to fight civil rights reform. Now they lead the way in class warfare. Trying to divide us, the rich from those with less is the “new” racism. We’re all in this together. We’re all Americans and need to regain the pride in that.

    • tom

      March 20, 2024 at 9:44 am

      That is another way of saying you are fine with the status quo, and anyone who isn’t so fine with it is engaging in “class warfare”. Of course if we don’t oppose the current unfair system of taxation, the wealthy win the class warfare by default.

  2. nick

    March 20, 2024 at 10:14 am

    We all want to pay the least amount of taxes. You seem to mention corporate income taxes and not personal income taxes. You need to clarify that since it is definitely not clear.
    No matter what he does or promises he will not beat Baldwin since she is all for abortion with no limitations.
    I wrote to her asking that she do everything possible to bring a vote on TIKTOK to the floor and vote to ban it.
    How many of these users would be happy if the U S government had a full dossier on them? The Chinese government probably does.
    Sickening when you read that some subscribers get their news from an app that is controlled by the Chinese Communist Party.

  3. Char

    March 20, 2024 at 10:26 am

    It is past time for Tammy Baldwin to retire from Government. It seems, Mr. Shaw, that you don’t seem to care that she votes lock step with all of the other Dems and doesn’t care that a lot of her votes are against we, the people. At least Mr. Hovde made his money BEFORE running for a government position not AFTER getting into government.

    If you and others want companies to pay more, then get the tax code changed. But, beware of what you wish for, because more taxes paid by companies means products will cost even more than they already do.

  4. Kent Porter

    March 20, 2024 at 12:52 pm

    I don’t see Tammy lifer Baldwin donating here $ 174000 wage , She also gets per diems for food gas , lodging and who knows what else , SO shake it off Scotty !!!!!!!!!!!!

  5. Walden

    March 20, 2024 at 1:53 pm

    So Hovde is a bad actor because he invests in Bermuda? Consider the following:

    Thousands of insurers and re-insurers have a domicile in Bermuda for tax reasons. If YOU own a broad index fund in your 401k or ira YOU are invested in these insurers.

    The State of Wisconsin Investment Board (SWIB), which is responsible for investing that multi-billion $ state surplus, and investing the retirement funds of state employees, invests in Bermuda as well, for the same reasons Hovde does, to make more money for YOU. If you are a state of Wisconsin employee you are in good company with Eric Hovde.

    This information is easily verifiable; just dispense with the “journalism as activism” schtick and tell it like it is.

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