Ron Johnson's Reinvention Tour Day 2: Ron Johnson's Willingness to Horse Trade the Home Mortgage Deduction

Oct 18, 2010

WisDems Highlight Ron Johnson’s Reinvention, Attempt By his D.C. Handlers to Avoid the Media, Mislead Voters and Hide his Extremism 

MADISON — Republican Senate Candidate Ron Johnson has dodged 15 debates during the election, rarely releases his schedule to the media, and is basing his run on an $8 million ad campaign that explains precious few of his extremist stands on the issues. Never in Wisconsin history has a candidate actually admitted that his campaign is based on so deliberately misleading the voters — until Ron Johnson.
Ron Johnson has attempted to mislead the voters about a variety of his extremist positions such as his “true feelings” denying climate change, his “true feelings” opposing unemployment aid for the jobless and his “true feelings” about how Dick Morris motivated him to run for Senate by asking a “rich guy from Wisconsin,” to run.
Below is another extreme position Ron Johnson has tried to hide, his willingness to “horse trade” the home mortgage deduction that thousands of Wisconsin families rely on. According to WKOW, Johnson indicated a strong opposition to government subsidies, so the station asked whether Johnson also opposed the mortgage deduction:

“We asked if that applied to home mortgage interest deductions, and whether that popular program should be eliminated. Johnson said his goal is to lower taxes and simplify the tax code, and, as part of that, he wouldn’t rule out doing away with the interest deduction.”

“If that means horse trading with reductions of certain deductions I’m willing to take a look at all of the options,” Johnson said. [Johnson willing to ‘horse trade’ mortgage interest deduction, WKOW, 8/20/10]

The Johnson campaign then tried to back away from Johnson’s comments, claiming that his “true position” was misunderstood:

This claim was made following an interview with WKOW’s Bob Schaper.  During the interview, Johnson stated his willingness to “take a look at all of the options in terms of how you simplify taxes.”   Johnson supports the mortgage interest deduction, but stated a willingness to explore a variety of options to reduce the tax burden and simplify our tax code. Johnson’s response was a far cry from any assertion that he would specifically look to “horse trade” mortgage interest deductions and simply an inaccurate claim. [Fact check: Voters deserve to hear the truth about Ron Johnson’s record, Johnson campaign, 8/21/10]

Johnson recently made an unprecedented admission — that his constant reversals and ‘do-overs” on the campaign trail are actually part of a pattern designed to camouflage his “true feelings” and mask his extremism from the voters. According to Politico:


“He feels stung by a story in the Journal Sentinel in which he questioned the science behind global warming and said “sunspots” are just as much to blame. It lacked context, he says, though he considers himself a strong global warming skeptic. So he watches his words, ignoring the fact that he’s already making the trade-offs conventional politicians make to win office. It will be different once and if he wins, he promises. Then, his true feelings can take voice.”  [Politico, 10/12/10]

 It’s no surprise that Johnson is avoiding the media — he previously suggested that the media is engaged in a conspiracy (along with lawyers and professors) to create a socialist state:

“By controlling the faculties of our colleges of education, law, and journalism, liberals have been able to exert far greater influence over our schools, our courts, and our media, than the strength of their ideas ever would have allowed. Far too often, our schools indoctrinate our children with liberal dogma. Our courts have created the right of privacy out of thin air, and codified lie – codified laws abridging the right of free speech. And all this is aided and abetted by a mainstream press whose liberal bias knows no bounds. Through the control of these institutions, together with their sweeping electoral victory in 2008, radical liberals finally attained the power they had been so desperately seeking. We may appear to be peering into abyss of a financial system meltdown, but the real abyss we are hovering over, is that of socialism and state control.” [Shawano County Republican Fall Dinner, 9/26/10.]

Johnson was recently criticized by his hometown newspaper, the Oshkosh Northwestern for failing to debate in Oshkosh and for refusing to meet with the newspaper and answer simple questions about his stands on the issues.