Dueling Records: Russ Feingold vs. Paul Ryan for Senate in Wisconsin

Bill Kaplan considers the possibilities for a Russ Feingold Senate run in 2012 now that Wisconsin’s Herb Kohl has announced his retirement:

Two potential front runners, former Wisconsin Democratic Senator Russell Feingold and current Wisconsin GOP Representative Paul Ryan, have completely opposite voting records:


Feingold Issue Ryan
NO Bush tax cuts YES
NO Iraq War & fighting wars with borrowed money YES
NO Patriot Act YES
NO TARP YES
NO Repeal of Glass-Steagall Act YES

My nod goes to Feingold, who always fought for the common good and successfully reached across the partisan divide to his GOP colleagues to pass groundbreaking legislation.

Will it be Russ Feingold vs. Paul Ryan for Senate in 2012?There are other comparisons to be made in the legislative records of Russ Feingold and Paul Ryan. Consider their voting and cosponsorship records in the 111th Congress:


Feingold Issue Ryan
YES Extending Unemployment Insurance NO
YES Children’s Health Insurance Program Reauthorization NO
YES Don’t Ask Don’t Tell Repeal YES
COSPONSOR Employment Non-Discrimination Act NON-COSPONSOR
YES Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act NO
COSPONSOR Uniting American Families Act NON-COSPONSOR

Russ Feingold and Paul Ryan stand for two starkly different visions of America: one in which the civil liberties of Americans are preserved, discrimination is brought to an end and we lend a hand to those who need it, and another in which government prerogatives matter more, discrimination is made legal and struggling people are left on their own. If Feingold and Ryan end up as their parties’ nominees for U.S. Senate in Wisconsin, I can’t imagine a clearer race.

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