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Madison, WI - Recall Election Ordered For Wis. Gov. Scott Walker

Published on: March 30, 2012 10:57 AM
By: AP
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Madison, WI - Embattled first-term Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker will face a recall this spring after an election was ordered Friday following the collection of more than 900,000 signatures in the wake of his push against union bargaining rights.

The Government Accountability Board voted 5-0 to order the recall, a move that has been expected for weeks given the high number of signatures gathered between November and January. It took 540,208 signatures to trigger a recall.

Assuming a Democratic primary is necessary, it will be May 8. The actual recall vote then will be June 5. Three Democrats already have announced they are running and Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, whom Walker defeated in 2010, has said he would announce his intentions before Tuesday.

Walker said Thursday that he looked forward to making his argument for keeping his job during the recall campaign.

“It gives us a great opportunity to tell our story, to tell that we’re turning things around, how we’re heading in the right direction, how we’re moving Wisconsin forward,” Walker said after a news conference in Milwaukee. “But we’ve got a lot more to do.”

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There have been only two successful gubernatorial recalls in U.S. history, against California Gov. Gray Davis in 2003 and North Dakota Gov. Lynn Frazier in 1921.

Walker was targeted for recall after he pushed through a law last year that effectively ended collective bargaining rights for most state workers. It also forced the workers to contribute more to their pension and health care costs, which amounted to a cut in pay.

Walker argued the changes were needed to help balance the state’s budget, while Democrats and other opponents said the true intention was to weaken the power of unions, which have traditionally opposed Republicans.

A passionate fight ensued in Wisconsin, the first state to enact a comprehensive collective bargaining law in 1959 and the birthplace of the national union representing all non-federal public employees. Protests raged for weeks and grew as large as 100,000 people. But Walker and Republicans who controlled the Legislature never wavered and they passed the law even though all 14 Senate Democrats fled to Illinois in a failed attempt to block it.

The elections board also voted Friday to order a recall against Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch, after nearly 809,000 signatures were gathered on recall petitions against her.

“This is no great cause for celebration, mainly because the reasons for the recall are so grave,” said state Democratic Party Chairman Mike Tate. “Wisconsin deserves an honest discussion about her future. Today’s actions ensure that this judgment will now be in the hands of the people.”

Four Republican state senators also have been targeted for recall, one of which subsequently resigned. All six elections will be on either May 8 or June 5, depending on whether there are primaries.

Two Republican state senators lost their seats in a previous round of recalls last year. The Senate is currently evenly divided between Republicans and Democrats. Republicans control the Assembly 59-39-1.

The recall elections promise to be bare-knuckle expensive affairs, with millions of dollars coming into Wisconsin from out-of-state special interests. Walker already had raised more than $12 million by mid-January and he has traveled across the country getting checks as large as $250,000 from high-powered conservative backers.

He casts the election as a fight between him and powerful unions. One of his Democratic challengers, former Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk, already has won the endorsement of the statewide teachers union and the state workers union after she pledged to veto any state budget that doesn’t restore collective bargaining.

An outside group supported by unions has run ads supporting Falk. Walker has been on the air since mid-November and the Republican Governors Association started ads earlier this month attacking both Falk and Barrett, even though he’s not yet in the race. And the RGA launched two new ads Friday, one against Barrett and one against Falk.

Other Democrats running are longtime Secretary of State Doug La Follette and state Sen. Kathleen Vinehout, of Alma.

At least three Democrats also have announced their plans to run for lieutenant governor. They are Madison firefighter and union leader Mahlon Mitchell, Milwaukee private investigator Ira Robins and Marinette truck driver Bruce Berman.

Candidates wishing to run in any of the recalls have until April 10 to file nomination papers.



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Read Comments (13)  —  Post Yours »

1

 Mar 30, 2012 at 11:11 AM Mark Levin Says:

This whole thing was brought upon by Union Thugary. If you belong to a union, you should be ashamed of yourself!

2

 Mar 30, 2012 at 11:42 AM Brian Says:

I donated $7.70 to walker on his website to help him fight the union bullies. If I had more gelt I would give much more. The Unions are making our cities bankrupt, and by extension, us!

3

 Mar 30, 2012 at 12:22 PM Anonymous Says:

This is what happens when the voters actually understand the Republican agenda. There is no union thuggery here, just a governor who lied to the people of his state about his agenda and a million voters who signed recall petitions to get rid of him. Ain't democracy lovely?

4

 Mar 30, 2012 at 12:31 PM peretz2 Says:

Reply to #3  
Anonymous Says:

This is what happens when the voters actually understand the Republican agenda. There is no union thuggery here, just a governor who lied to the people of his state about his agenda and a million voters who signed recall petitions to get rid of him. Ain't democracy lovely?

And a State which had zero budgetary problems before it began extending tax breaks to "job creators" who did nothing to create jobs -- sort of like the Bush tax cuts

5

 Mar 30, 2012 at 12:50 PM AuthenticSatmar Says:

And when he wins re-elction, what will the Democrats say about Democracy? They attempted to sabotage by not attending the votes. I guess democracy only works when it goes your way. The Democrats have always believed they are smarter than the voters.

6

 Mar 30, 2012 at 01:28 PM blahblah Says:

Ah, unions...cry me a river!

7

 Mar 30, 2012 at 02:04 PM peretz2 Says:

Reply to #5  
AuthenticSatmar Says:

And when he wins re-elction, what will the Democrats say about Democracy? They attempted to sabotage by not attending the votes. I guess democracy only works when it goes your way. The Democrats have always believed they are smarter than the voters.

He is not even going to make it to recall because 4 of his buddies have been subpoened by the fbi for campaign fraud

8

 Mar 30, 2012 at 03:07 PM Reb Yid Says:

Reply to #4  
peretz2 Says:

And a State which had zero budgetary problems before it began extending tax breaks to "job creators" who did nothing to create jobs -- sort of like the Bush tax cuts

I don't understand...do you like having the government take your money and give it to other people?

9

 Mar 30, 2012 at 03:16 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #1  
Mark Levin Says:

This whole thing was brought upon by Union Thugary. If you belong to a union, you should be ashamed of yourself!

Sometime in November, after Obama has won a second term, we will have a special "Mark Levin" appreciation day for all the comic relief and humor your postings have provided to VIN readers (both Union and Agudah) over the past two years. Yasher koach, and keep your rants coming. They are greatly appreciated. A gutten shabbos and zissen un kosher peseach.

10

 Mar 30, 2012 at 05:17 PM anonymous Says:

Reply to #1  
Mark Levin Says:

This whole thing was brought upon by Union Thugary. If you belong to a union, you should be ashamed of yourself!

There is right wing , big money thuggary and malarkey and it will go down the drain

11

 Mar 30, 2012 at 05:21 PM peretz2 Says:

Reply to #8  
Reb Yid Says:

I don't understand...do you like having the government take your money and give it to other people?

Government $ have to come from somewhere and given that most essential government $ go to protect private property (police and the military)

12

 Mar 31, 2012 at 09:59 PM Phineas Says:

Reply to #8  
Reb Yid Says:

I don't understand...do you like having the government take your money and give it to other people?

You are absolutely correct: You don't understand. The government doesn't provide services using money from the money fairy.

13

 Apr 01, 2012 at 11:57 AM anonymous Says:

Reply to #8  
Reb Yid Says:

I don't understand...do you like having the government take your money and give it to other people?

Reb Yid you must like government taking money and giving it to younge leit to use section 8, food stamps, and VIC ansd diligently learn and how about the military aid to E.Y. where do you think the money comes from the tooth fairy

14

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