Who Is Ron Johnson, Anyway?

Before 2010, Ron Johnson had no intention of entering politics. A successful businessman with an accounting background, he had spent some 30 years building a custom plastics extrusion business in Oshkosh, Wisconsin.

The national debate raging over Obamacare woke him up. He became especially incensed over a speech in which Obama vilified physicians, specifically surgeons, alleging that they often performed unnecessary procedures for profit.

Johnson had quite a different experience with surgeons. A daughter was born with a severe heart defect -- so serious that the newborn was flown to Children’s Hospital in Milwaukee, where a pediatric heart surgeon was roused in the wee hours to perform emergency surgery on the tiny heart. He re-routed the blood through the atria and ventricles. In effect, the girl’s heart was fixed to work backwards, but it worked.

The senator is today very proud of the young lady -- she works as a nurse at the very hospital where her life was saved.

Such doctors, thought Johnson, are not venal hacks who perform unnecessary procedures, and they don’t deserve to be tarred with that brush.

With specific intention to undo the harm done during the first two years of the Obama administration, Johnson threw his hat in the ring and defeated incumbent Senator Russ Feingold in a stunning (and largely self-financed) upset.

His plan was to spend the first two years of his term getting to understand the Senate and the workings of the federal government in general, then to spend the next four actually fixing things under a Republican president. He could not imagine that Obama would be re-elected, and he was confident that a Romney-Ryan administration would be able to set things straight. Of course, it didn’t turn out that way.

But the senator has not been idle.