The Wisconsin Recall: A Bellweather Of November, Or Not?
Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker is one week from potentially being ousted from office.† Is that a big deal or not, and does it have national implications come November?
Yes, says Republicans.† No, says Democrats.
According to reporter Dan Balz, the GOP is pretty sure that whatever happens is a precursor to how the state — and more blue collar worker states –† will fare come the general election. “Karl Rove….argues that the results of Walkerís recall election and the margin of the vote will offer the first genuine clues as to whether Wisconsinís political environment is similar to four years ago or has reverted to the nail-biter status of 2000 and 2004. ‘This will give a very clear indication of whether Wisconsin and the industrial Midwest will be up for grabs this year,’ Rove said.”
Not so fast, says Florida Congresswoman and DNC spokesperson Debbie Wasserman Schultz. “‘I think, honestly, there arenít going to be any repercussions,’ Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.) said in a broad-ranging interview on C-SPANís ‘Newsmakers.’ ‘Itís an election thatís based in Wisconsin. Itís an election that I think is important nationally because Scott Walker is an example of how extreme the tea party has been when it comes to the policies that they have pushed the Republicans to adopt,’ Wasserman Schultz said. ‘But I think itíll be, at the end of the day, a Wisconsin-based election, and like I said, across the rest of the country and including in Wisconsin, President Obama is ahead.’Ē
So why the disagreement?† Because the Republicans are fairly certain that they will be the victors come June 5th, where as the Democrats just aren’t as sure.† Walker is still leading slightly according to most polls, including those commissioned by Democrats.† As long as the results are in doubt, the Democrats, and most especially the DNC, who have been heavily criticized for sitting out the race until the last minute, need to make it a public argument that should Democratic candidate Tom Barrett lose, it means nothing to the party itself.
If Barrett does pull off a victory, you can guarantee that the tunes will change from both parties.† The Republicans will remind the press that until 2010 Wisconsin always voted mostly for Democrats.† The Democrats will be sure to push that Walker’s recall is just the first sign of the shifting momentum for 2012.
In the meantime, progressive groups are doing extra work trying to support Barrett in his race, such as the Progressive Change Campaign Committee’s last minute financial gift of $100,000 to help unseat Walker. ”
“The Wisconsin recall is a top national priority for progressives — and it should be†for†the national Democratic Party. When we heard that the Democratic National Committee wasnít giving Wisconsin Democrats the resources needed to get out the vote, the PCCC made a strategic decision to do less fundraising for our own Wisconsin TV ads and instead focus our attention on righting the DNCís wrong.Ē
Apparently not everyone in the party got the DNC memo that this race doesn’t really matter in November.
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