Wisconsin

There are two ways to win votes in Wisconsin. John Kennedy demonstrated one of them four years ago when he traveled up and down the state calling on its citizens to face up to the 1960's; they responded by giving him his first great boost towards the White House.

This year George C. Wallace, the little man whom Kennedy blew out of the doorway at Alabama University last June, told the voters of Wisconsin that "this so-called civil rights bill is not in the interest of anybody"--and 250,000 of them voted for him in Tuesday's primary.

The official explanation offered from Democratic headquarters was that Republicans crossing over under Wisconsin's liberal primary law--anyone is free to vote in either primary--cast their ballots for Wallace in an attempt to embarrass President Johnson. But Wallace's position had some appeal to the voters. It is hard to imagine 250,000 Republicans crossing over to vote for a man like Wallace out of sheer joy of playing a prank on Lyndon Johnson.

So the President has learned that George C. Wallace can get votes in Wisconsin, even against a popular Democratic governor and such an astute politician as Johnson can hardly be expected to overlook the returns. But the President ought to remember in planning his own campaign that John Kennedy got votes a different way--and he got far more than Wallace.