Wisconsin Recall Primary July 12
Wisconsin’s State Senate currently has 19 Republicans and 14 Democrats. Democratic activists are therefore concentrated on recalling three Republican senators and replacing them with Democrats, which would shift the balance to 16 R/17 D.
Wisconsin law demands that an elected official serve one year in office before s/he is subject to recall.
Six Republican state senators who are being recalled meet that standard, and have been targeted with successful recall petitions. Democrats are angry over a provision first advanced by Republican Gov. Scott Walker and approved by both houses of the state legislature which would take away collective bargaining rights for almost all public employees. The State Supreme Court has cleared the law and it will now go into effect.
Edit: Reader rgbact has correctly pointed out that the bill restricts collective bargaining rights only on benefits, leaving collective bargaining for wages in place. I regret the error.
Even stranger (if that were possible), during the Supreme Court deliberations, Justice Ann Walsh Bradley has accused Justice David Prosser of trying to choke her. Justice Bradley voted to block the law; Justice Prosser voted to allow the legislative action to move forward. Justice Prosser narrowly survived an election of his own earlier this year.
Three Democratic state senators are also being recalled. Republicans accuse them of dereliction of duty for leaving the state in a failed attempt to keep the State Senate from reaching a quorum. The Democratic recall primary for two of the candidates is July 19; on that day also, a “real” recall election will be held because one of the Republican candidates did not qualify for the ballot.
The recall election for the six Republican senators is not until August 9. Today, there is an important preliminary step, a “recall primary”. Since this is a bit of an odd concept, and came about in an unusual way, some explanation is in order.
Six Democrats had originally filed to oust the six Republican senators, with a recall election slated for today. However, by forcing Democrats to hold a primary to select the recall challenger, Republicans effectively delayed the actual recall election by one month, to August 9. In each election, there are “real” Democrats and “fake” Democrats. The Democrats had originally threatened to run three “placeholder” candidates but decided not to at the last minute.
Here are the races scheduled for today. In each case, the “real” Democrat is in blue and the “fake” Democrat (actually a Republican operative) is in red. For example, Otto Junkermann is a former Republican state legislator. I have indicated polling numbers where I have them from Public Policy Polling data that is about a month old, and only compares the sitting Senator to the “real” Democratic challenger.
- Nancy Nusbaum, former Brown County executive
- Mert Summers, DePere
- Otto Junkermann, Green Bay, former Republican state assemblyman
- Sandy Pasch, Whitefish Bay
- Gladys Huber, Mequon
- Shelly Moore, teachers’ union leader (PPP 45%)
- Isaac Weix, Menomonie
- State Rep. Fred Clark (D-Baraboo)
- Rol Church, Wautoma
District 18 (Senator Randy Hopper) (PPP 47%)
- Jessica King, Oshkosh (PPP 50%)
- John D. Buckstaff, Oshkosh
- Jennifer Shilling, La Crosse (PPP 56%)
- James D. Smith, La Crosse
We will have election results on Logarchism tomorrow morning, or as soon as they’re available.
July 12: Primaries in all of the Republican recalls
July 19: Primaries in all of the Democratic recalls
Aug. 9: General election in all of the Republican recalls
Aug. 16: General election in all of the Democratic recalls
There are very few sources for complete, authoritative information. Election Info is the best blog I have found, because otherwise the information is scattered between a half-dozen local newspapers.
- Wisconsin Recall Election Wars See Dirty Tricks From Republican Allies (huffingtonpost.com)
- Wisconsin Republican Backs Running Fake Candidates (politicalwire.com)
- Wisconsin Republicans doing GOTV for fake Dem candidates (dailykos.com)
- WISCONSIN: Fake Candidates Abound (iflizwerequeen.com)
- Political Drama With Cheese (logarchism.com)