Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Republican Sweep In Wisconsin

In spite of the best efforts of organized labor and the Democratic Party, Republicans won every single recall election in Wisconsin last night. I think a touchdown dance would be entirely appropriate.
In addition to Mr. Walker, Republican Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch and four Republican state Senate seats held by the GOP were being challenged. Ms. Kleefisch and three of the Republican Senate candidates had won their races while the Republican was leading in the fourth race late Tuesday.

If he wins, Republicans would garner a sweep.
Democrats appeared to have assumed control of the state Senate with results posted early  Wednesday showing former Sen. John Lehman (D-Racine) defeating incumbent Van Wanggaard in a tight race.

Republicans held on to three other state Senate seats in Tuesday's recall voting. Democratic challengers lost recalls bids against Sens. Scott Fitzgerald (R-Juneau) and Terry Moulton (R-Chippewa Falls.).

Rep. Jerry Petrowski (R-Stettin) was elected to fill the vacancy left by Sen. Pam Galloway (R-Wausau), who resigned earlier this year after opponents gathered enough signatures to initiate a recall election.

All eyes Wednesday will be on the 21st District. Results posted early Wednesday showed Lehman with 36,255 votes to 35,476 for Wanggaard with 100% of precincts reporting. The margin of 779 could bring a recount.

In a statement, Senate Democratic Leader Mark Miller said:
"Tonight, Wisconsinites across the 21st Senate District elected a new State Senator. By electing a Democratic Senate, the people of Wisconsin have opened the door to responsible dialogue and if needed provide a bulwark against continued political extremism, and restored checks and balances to the Wisconsin Legislature. I look forward to working again with Senator-elect Lehman in the State Senate in the coming months."

Wanggaard's campaign manager Justin Phillips issued his own statement, hinting at a recount:
"We owe it to all of Senator Wanggaard's supporters and the voters of Wisconsin to thoroughly examine the election and its results and act accordingly once we have all of the information."
So, if these results hold up, the Democrats have won control of a senate that won't meet again and will be turned over in November
Even if they were to take the Senate, its hard to see how that would weaken Walker, since the current Senate will likely never again meet in session. It adjourned for the year in March. It isn't scheduled to meet again until January, next year, after a whole new round of state Senate elections. 

In November, all state Senators are back on the ballot, this time in new districts as a result of redistricting. The new districts maps were drawn by the GOP, so the party would have an immediate advantage in taking back control of the chamber.


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