Barb Caffrey's Blog

Writing the Elfyverse . . . and beyond

Update: Wisconsin state Senate Recalls, part 1.

with 2 comments

Now, as for the recalls — first up was the primary election on 7/12/11  for the Democrats running against the six Republicans across the state.   We had to have a primary because the Wisconsin Republican Party put up “fake Democrats” (what the Rs called “protest candidates”) to stall the Dems and give their own R Senators more time to raise money and fight the recall effort. 

I’m pleased to report that the real Democratic candidates all won; most won easily, with Shelly Moore of River Falls having a relatively tough race against Isaac Weix of Menomonie due to the efforts of the St. Croix County Republican Party, which actively worked to get Republicans to vote in the open primary  in an attempt to force Moore out.  Moore won by the percentage of 54-46, with 17496 voting for Moore and 14990 voting for Weix with 97% of the vote counted in Senate district 10.

Here’s an overall look at the recall races from the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, with the insightful title of, “6 fake Democrats fall, setting stage for GOP recalls.”  A relevant quote from the article:

Six fake Democratic candidates put up by the Republican Party to buy time for Republican state senators subject to recalls accomplished that job Tuesday, but none of them did the unexpected and knocked off a real Democrat.

Candidates backed by the Democratic Party won all six Senate primary elections, all but one of them by substantial amounts. They’ll all go on to face the Republican incumbents on Aug. 9, in an attempt by Democrats to regain control of the state Senate and put the brakes on Gov. Scott Walker’s agenda.

That the primaries were held at all is a function of the twists and turns of political strategy played out in recent months as the state broke into warring camps over Walker’s attempt to restrict collective bargaining for public employees.

The Republican Party forced the primaries to give its six senators facing recall another four weeks before facing a Democratic challenger, in order to allow them to take their case to the voters and argue that their work on the budget was good for the state.

Take a look at that last sentence again.  Do you all remember the mantra, “Wisconsin is broke, that’s why we have to do X, Y, and Z.”  (With X being the elimination of collective bargaining rights for public employee unions, Y being cutting $800 out of the public education budget, and Z giving tax breaks to corporations?) 

Well, isn’t it hypocritical for the Rs, who claim that Wisconsin is “broke,” to force these recall elections into primaries using “fake Dems” to extend the process?  

I mean, here the GOP forced these recalls because of these “fake Dems,” which has caused the state of WI to have spent at least $450,000 more money than needed to be spent on recall elections.  Which makes this the next relevant question: how broke can be Wisconsin be if the Wisconsin Republican Party is willing to play games like this?

At any rate, the six real Dems now will face the six sitting Rs on August 9, 2011, to see who will take control of the state Senate.  There will be one election already in the books by that point — state Senator Dave Hansen (D-Green Bay) will run next week, July 19, 2011, to attempt to hold his seat, and it’s strongly believed he will win easily — with two more to come on August 16, 2011, for the remaining two Democratic state Senators, Jim Holperin (D-Conover) and Bob Wirch (D-Pleasant Prairie — Pleasant Prairie is a suburb of Kenosha), to attempt to hold their seats.   Providing all three Dems hold their seats, the six Democratic challengers will need to knock out at least three Senate Rs to take control of the state Senate.

Tonight was only the first step toward restoring a check on our currently all-Republican state government; we have more steps to come.  Keep watching my blog for further updates, as I promise to “keep ’em coming” as long as there’s something to say on this topic.


Written by Barb Caffrey

July 13, 2011 at 1:30 am

2 Responses

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  1. We need to recall Governor Walker, and Senator Wanggaard. I have to sleep on it first, but I’ll be blogging on it soon.


    July 13, 2011 at 4:16 am

    • I agree, Lika, but did you see what the Rs did to get a new map for 2012? Wanggaard is making it far easier for himself to hold his seat, as most of the city of Racine will now be in district 22 while Wanggaard, in exchange, gets most of Kenosha County as district 22 will be the cities of Kenosha and Racine — 21 will be _everything else_. You and I would still be able to work to remove Wanggaard but in that event (if that map holds up; it’s being challenged in court due to the county and ward lines having to be re-drawn — usually the state of Wisconsin’s municipalities get until September and these districts should _not_ be drawn until after all of those other lines have been taken care of — and because the Rs are going to try to say that it’s _OK_ for them to do it this way even though as I understand it, it’s against the state’s Constitution to do it this way. I believe the Rs may run afoul of the US Constitution as well, which states as one of its precepts that we cannot pass any _ex post facto_ laws — and that’s what the Rs are trying to do here, right? Pass an _ex post facto_ law?), but we’d be unable to vote him out because we’d both now be in district 22.

      But yes, we will definitely recall Walker no matter what the lines are — the statewide lines are not in dispute, as the states of Michigan, Minnesota, Iowa and Illinois all agree where those states end and ours begins. 😉

      Barb Caffrey

      July 13, 2011 at 1:32 pm

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