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.



Photo credit: wikimedia commons


Carl Oerke
Carl O5 years ago

The Wisconsin recall election of Scott Walker is a bellweather and harbinger of things to come. Walker is under a cloud of suspicion and his allies have been charged with felonies. It is likely that he will also be charged. The battle now being waged in Wisconsin is of paramount importance. Walker's supporters have out spent his opponent Barrett 25:1. If the Koch Brothers and Karl Rove's PACS are able to outspend the oppostion and win the re-election battle it will signal that Citizens's United has won. Democracy may be lost in this country because the rich and powerful will get their way and candidates with small budgets will not be able to compete no matter how competent, talented or principled the candidate. If Walker wins it will be a black day for this country but a sunny day for the Kochs and Rove. Make the right choice Wisconsin. The rest of the country is counting on you

Don H.
Don H5 years ago

Get out and vote against Walker!

Walker represents a new America-Fascist America.

Frances C.
Frances C5 years ago

This is what Citizens United has wrought. The Billionaires are pouring money into Wisconsin to elect that little weasel Walker. The tea party R's are sending in people as well as tons of money...buying an election has reached a new disgusting high. I hope the good people of Wisconsin will prevail.

Charles P.
Charles P5 years ago

Debbie and Barrack should be ashamed of themselves. They did nothing for WI while the Koch brothers financed and the repugnant guvs were sent in there like an invading army. It almost makes me want to stay home on election day, but I love my country and fellow workers too much to throw the election to willess moneyr.

Don Lukenbill
Don L5 years ago

Regardless of what happens, the neocon movement will paint it as no big deal.

Headline writer: I believe the word is "bellwether."

Roberta K.
Roberta K.5 years ago

I'm not a religious woman, but I pray that he is ousted. The man is dangerous.

donald baumgartner

A little over 144 hrs, & it's bye bye Walker!!!

Chris Cole
Chris C5 years ago

Regardless of who thinks what...let's just hope Walker IS ousted and the state of Wisconsin vindicated. Let's also hope they remember this BIG MISTAKE, don't listen to all the Repub lies and vote the right way in the future. Then I'd love to see Walker REALLY investigated for crimes commited before and during his run for Governor!

Jean Sage
Jean Sage5 years ago

The governor is “fixing” the state budget by moving debt into the future. The numbers released by the administration include several actions that raise cash by ‘refinancing and restructuring’ debt. The Walker administration delayed paying over $500 million in debt payments. The consequence is increased principal and interest payments over the next 20 years. Ouch…so much for that “balanced budget” he’s been bragging about.

Since taking office, enforcement against illegal polluters has dropped by more than half. In a recent action involving a repeat polluter, Walker appointees overrode the DNR staff’s recommendation to pursue charges against Herr Environmental through the DOJ. The Herrs have made donations to Scott Gunderson, a top political appointee in the Walker DNR who urged DNR staff to drop enforcement proceedings. They’ve also donated to Gov. Walker, Lt. Gov. Kleefisch and her husband Rep. Kleefisch who interceded on the behalf of the Herrs in an attempt to get the DNR to go easy on a repeat offender.

Follow the money. The mere fact that 25 times more money is being launched at Walker’s ads, than his opponent’s, should make you take pause. As for me, support of veterans, an honest budget and the safety of our drinking water should not be for sale.

Jean Sage
Jean Sage5 years ago

From WI. I submitted this as a letter to the editor. I hope they publish it.

Honoring Memorial Day on June 5th

I am writing this on Memorial Day, May 28th. I grew up participating in the marching band from 5th grade on. We would finish the parade route and play a somber piece or two in the gymnasium as part of the commemoration ceremony. My dad had served in WWII and I was sensitive to what an emotional day it was for him.

You must be wondering what this has to do with June 5th. I have started this missive multiple times. I’ve lost sleep over it. I’ve told myself that voters’ minds are already made up, so what’s the point?

What I see happening is a blatant disrespect for our servicemen and women and their families. I am referring to the ever widening John Doe corruption probe in which former top-aides of Gov. Walker were charged with embezzling thousands of dollars from a taxpayer charity meant for Iraq and Afghanistan veterans and their families.

As Milwaukee County Executive, Scott Walker routinely cut funding for veteran programs, services and for the War Memorial at the Lake Front. Another example of Walker’s policies negatively impacting Veterans is SB202 which strips veterans of their right to sue their employer for punitive damages in state court.