Just took a look at this week's Isthmus. The cover story features two opinion pieces by Ruth Conniff and Christian Schneider, the former blasting Ron Johnson and the latter criticizing Russ Feingold. (I can't link to it yet because it's not online -- pick up your own damn copy)
Christian, Christian, Christian...Nice guy, good sense of humor, and significantly, he is capable of speaking candidly about politics occasionally. This was not one of those occasions.
Now, some of the criticism Schneider makes against Feingold is fair. He points out some of the disingenuous attacks that have come from the incumbent's campaign, including the brouhaha about Ron Johnson supporting Communist Chinese economic policy (it's not really communist anymore, anyway) as well as the allegation that Johnson would "hand over the Great Lakes" to oil companies.
Some of it was weaker. For instance, Schneider never really accomplished his task of disproving Feingold's "maverick" label. He points out that when Feingold does part ways with is party, it is because the Democrats' position isn't "liberal" enough. But the premise of touting a "maverick" record is to prove to voters that one is not beholden to a party leader or a special interest, not that one lacks an ideology.
And this part absolutely drove me up the wall, which, I admit, may mean Schneider succeeded:
...Feingold labeled himself a penny-pincher. This from a senator who voted for nearly $1 trillion in "stimulus" dollars that nobody believes stimulated anything except for the GOP's electoral chances in November.
I'll give Christian the benefit of the doubt, and assume by "nobody" he only means the people who haven't looked at the numbers, have no expertise in economics and/or oppose any Democrat-backed legislation on partisan principle.
Still, it would have been nice if he had snuck in a little reference to the CBO estimate which credited the stimulus for saving millions of jobs. He could have denounced it as part of a big government conspiracy, but at least it would have been out there.
Christian, as Vinny told The Situation at the end of Season 1 of Jersey Shore: Bro, it's not like I got beef, but like, I just don't think you're bein real wid us.
As for the notion that no conservative in his right mind would support Feingold that's obviously a subject for endless debate, but I have met Republicans who like Feingold. I know one self-described Republican who interned for his office last summer, and said she "respected him." I also know a former student coordinator for a major GOP campaign who told me he votes for Feingold because "he's not good for Wisconsin but he's good for the Senate as an institution." That's probably not a good slogan to win this next election, but I find it worth mentioning.