Former Mequon Mayor John Wirth sent me this “letter to the editor” endorsing Concordia University professor Van Mobley in the special election Republican primary for state senate district 8. (These are the days when I miss my friend the late Kevin Binversie who would remind me of the other elective offices previously sought by Van Mobley.) I am going to comment a bit on the race in the upcoming “Life, Under Construction” newsletters. – James Wigderson 


Senate District 8 deserves the best and most qualified representative in the Wisconsin Senate. We have been fortunate to have Alberta Darling as our Senator for the past 19 years. Agree with her or not, she had influence and ability. Only one of the candidates running to replace her has the ability to fill her shoes.

I write in support of Van Mobley. He is by far the most qualified candidate. As importantly, Van is a good person. We do not have enough of them in Madison.

As one of the most Republican districts in the state, Senate District 8 will be represented by a Republican. Therefore, it is important to examine the candidates in this primary carefully.

Van has been successful in both his chosen profession – rising to a full professorship in economics and history – and has been selected to be on a bank’s board of directors, owned an investment company and owns rental property. One of his opponents is a bar owner and the other worked for her husband’s investment company. In reality, both of his opponents have been full-time career politicians for a long time.

Van is the most educated candidate. He obtained a PhD and Masters and undergraduate degrees from prestigious universities. One of his opponents did not finish college. The other has a bachelor’s degree.

All three candidates have been very active conservative Republicans. But Van is also a good American and does not engage in performative nonsense. One of his opponents was so disruptive that the other Republicans in the Assembly kicked her out of their caucus. She was still pushing to decertify the 2020 election in 2022. Both of Van’s opponents were among only 15 Wisconsin Republicans who signed a letter asking Vice President Pence to break the law and block the certification of the election. That is crazy and wrong. In contrast, although he was disappointed with the results, Van promptly acknowledged that the election was over.

Van is active in community organizations and participates in every community event. In contrast, one of his opponents has represented part of Mequon for 12 years. Yet, I have never seen him at a parade or community event. Also, unlike other state representatives, I do not believe that opponent has ever attended a Mequon city government meeting.

Van has excellent experience, having served as a Village Trustee and, for the past 12 years, as President of Thiensville. Unlike his opponents, who have spent their time with lobbyists for many years, Van has worked with residents.

Van gets things done. People said it would be impossible to merge the Thiensville and Mequon fire departments. In the past, Thiensville shot it down. Van shouldered the leadership role and negotiated an agreement that is good for Thiensville, resulting in a viable, more efficient department that will save lives. I was on the other side of the table as Mequon mayor. If not for Van’s leadership, hard work and civility, it would not have happened. There are numerous other examples. We did not always agree, and he could be a tough negotiator, but he was always civil and reasoned and worked hard.

Please vote for Van Mobley. We need to elect someone who can work with other people and get things done. We do not need more politicians who believe performative tantrums and incivility constitute representation. Van is the best and most qualified candidate and will continue the strong leadership to which Senate District 8 has been accustomed.


John Wirth
Former Mequon Mayor

Life, Under Construction Every Monday and Thursday


Please follow and like us: