The gubernatorial Rose Bowl bet: Scott Walker's a cheap-ass piker

Kari Chisholm FacebookTwitterWebsite

It's a silly American tradition - the bet between politicians over a high-profile athletic contest; usually with local products that show off their home region.

And so, no surprise: Governor John Kitzhaber and Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker (yeah, that guy) have wagered baskets of local food and beverage. Here's the wager (via Governor Kitzhaber's statement):

With the Ducks’ victory, Governor Walker will package up a selection of Wisconsin products including: Leinenkugel's beer (produced in the Chippewa Valley), authentic Wisconsin cheese, a package of Andes mints (produced in Governor Walker’s hometown of Delevan), and a bottle of Blushing Rose Wine from Wollersheim Winery in Prairie du Sac, WI.

In the unlikely event that the Ducks fall to the Badgers, Governor Kitzhaber will send a selection of Oregon’s best craft beers (from all corners of Oregon), Kettle Chips (produced in Salem), Oregon Hazelnuts and Oregon Smoked King Salmon, to Wisconsin to highlight just a few of the of the great items produced in Oregon.

Now, it's all in good fun - but really, Walker? A package of candies that can be bought in any 7-11 in Oregon. A bottle of wine that sells for $6-10. And Leinenkugel's? That's not good beer. Not even close.

Jeff Alworth - known here as a co-founder and editor of this blog - is also the author of the Beervana blog, a contributor to Sunset magazine, and the author of the soon-to-be-published Beer Bible. An Oregonian, Alworth is also a proud University of Wisconsin alum. Here's what he had to say about Walker's beer offering:

Leinie's is not good. Oregon is offering far better booty. It's sort of predictable that Walker would offer it, though--Leinie's splits the difference between macro and micro in Wisconsin culture. No one argues it's great beer, but it's beloved nevertheless. Plus, Walker's a half-wit. Go Badgers!

With Kitzhaber throwing in smoked king salmon and actual craft beer, that "authentic" Wisconsin cheese had better be really good.

Game time is 2 p.m. Go Ducks!

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    I've never had authentic Wisconsin cheese that compares to Tillamook. But I think you're missing the subtext. Shouldn't Oregon be laying odds against a weaker opponent anyway?

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    I note the press release refers to Oregon smoked salmon.

    And while I do trust our Governor is doing the right thing, and wagering native & wild Oregon salmon, it still made me recall the fantastic OPB story late last year that busted the myth that the products in Made in Oregon stores are, well, made here.

    In the story, OPB reporter Chris Lehman quotes a Made in Oregon store retailer: "The salmon may come from Alaska, but all the value is added here. It's created into a great food here."

    "In fact, in less than 15 minutes at this store, I found products from no less than 11 different countries" said Lehman


    Sure. It could be worse.

    We could be selling "Andes Mints" made more than 3000 miles away from the altiplano.

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    I am a born and raised Wisconsinite. I will say this: Leinenkugel's is produced by mega-crap brewer SAB Miller Coors. No big surprise here. Miller brewing has been a contributor to Scott Walker's campain.

    I am surprised he didn't put up some Johnsonville Bratwurst. (Another contributor to the Walker regime)

    I see they don't specify which Wisconsin cheese maker is being ante'd up, but I wouldn't be surprised if it was a mass-producer and Walker contributor.

    Ande's candies? Whatever... Oak's Candy in Oshkosh, WI is the bomb.

    Regardless, Walker has been about as creative about this fun little wager as my last toilet flush.

    I am very proud of my state and our many awesome products. I really couldn't give a rat' about the football game. The point of the wager is to highlight the wonderful products of our equally wonderful states. Once again, Walker fails miserably.

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      We could all have come together with some Sprecher Beer Flavored Kettle Chips!

      And Usingers sausage would have been much classier. Walker doesn't seem to really appreciate his state.

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    The outcome of this game has too many variables for me to invest emotionally, although I am recording it for subsequent review. The choice that I make is to link a more progressive Oregon with those in Wisconsin who have struggled with their gov. I hope that as a symbol that Oregon has a victory. I also see that too many of the Koch inspired and funded Shock Doctrine policies are in the Northwest. And did you watch Eric Cantor? We must defeat supply side delusions.

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    Having spent about 1/2 of my life in Wisconsin, I know about many of their fine products. Tillamook is great cheese, but we don't have the varieties of cheese in Oregon that they make in Wisconsin. There are many varieties made there that are fabulous. Aged Brick (or stinky cheese) is my favorite memory. Also, I miss going to restaurants where they serve a slab of REAL butter on the table. I hope Walker sends our governor some great stuff!

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    And it'll probably arrive postage due.

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    Thanks Jeff, I wondered about the Henry's comparison.

    Eat Cheese or Die!

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