The state auditor race is between Democratic incumbent Rebecca Otto and Republican challenger Pat Anderson.
This is a race between two experienced candidates with state auditor tenure - Otto from 2006 to 2010 and Anderson from 2002 to 2006. This is also a repeat of the 2006 race, when Otto defeated Anderson, and has been a race of accusations and allegations between the two sides.
The state auditor's role is to oversee the $20 billion spent annually by local government in the state, primarily by performing audits of financial reports.
Otto has adopted a less-confrontational approach than her predecessor. She has worked more collaboratively with local officials. She has worked to keep partisanship out of the auditor's office. Her weakness is an appearance or perception of not holding local government more accountable.
Anderson is a self-proclaimed watchdog on local government accountability. During her first term, she identified a growing pension liability problem in some local governments, which needed to be addressed. She worked to keep the public informed on the strengths and/or weaknesses of local government. Anderson's weakness is a confrontational style, which she embraces as a management philosophy.
Frankly, this political race of allegations between these two candidates, leaves voters wanting a third-viable candidate. In the end, Anderson's watchdog strategy makes her our pick in this race.
We endorse Anderson for election as state auditor.