Friday, February 25

Personal Interview: Underheim

This last week I was able to have a personal interview with Gregg Underheim, ask him many questions and get a feel on his candidacy.

I must add that the difference in meeting him and the cold response I have experienced from the Burmaster campaign made for a stark contrast. I called upon Underheim unexpectedly while I was down in Madison and with no apparent effort he spoke with me for about an half hour, while after three emails and now three phone calls I have no response from Burmaster although they said I should get a response by the end of next week. I wouldn't hold my breath.

Although I did not have my exact list of questions before me to ask him, I found out where he stood on some very important issues that I had not been able to find info on before.

First, Underheim is very interested in other options in education in the state. When I gave him some of the information I had gathered on tax credits, he did not commit to any direct implementation, but seemed to be genuinely interested in it as an alternative. He also stressed the importance on the some of the new virtual learning systems that have been implemented in the state which save costs and have suffered litigious attacks from Burmaster and WEAC.

Second, he understood and committed to supporting in anyway he could the home schooling’s communities basic desire to be unregulated and left to teach their children in the way that seems best--a system which he acknowledged has worked very well.

Third, Underheim pledged that teaching in the classroom must not be limited to only teaching one side of the debate like has happened with the evolution idea. Part of learning is understanding that there are two sides to the debate and presenting both sides. Hint: keep your eye on this issue throughout the campaign.

Fourth, he was supportive of abstinence education although he reminded me that many of those types of decisions are made on a local level.

From a legislative perspective I was disappointed to find out that he had voted against the constitutional protection of marriage in Wisconsin, but he did agree that the schools are no place to push the anti-marriage agenda, unlike Burmaster.

There was urgency behind him as he explained the W3 plan or what works in Wisconsin plan. Under this idea, he would push for more accountability in the schools and an emphasis on streamlining school administration to provide tax savings and results in schools across the state.

Underheim can be contacted at his website

One more thing to add...Underheim seemed to be quite informed about the blogs that were and were not covering the race. I was actually amazed at how much Madison insiders watch the blogs. They keep an eye on how things are reported.