Tom Loftus "is going to lose his bid for governor," Isthmus news editor Bill Lueders writes in an opinion column, "because Tommy Thompson is a popular, hard-working politician who hasn't made many mistakes. He's going to lose because Thompson plans to spend obscene amounts of money donated by his fat-cat friends. Most important, Tom Loftus is going to lose because he and his party deserve to lose." The column says Loftus' performance at the first debate "revealed a man who is fundamentally confounded by his own lack of principle - in other words, a true party Democrat. His message was unrelentingly negative, his jibes petty and mean-spirited; his vision of the future, like Thompson's, calculated and hollow...." Thompson easily wins reelection by a 16-point margin and goes on to win two more elections.