Jump Down to Update 8! Major News!
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Today, the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board, which oversees elections, officially certified the recalls of Governor Scott Walker and Lt. Governor Rebecca Kleefisch. This was expected based on the staff recommendations yesterday that more than enough valid signatures existed to certify.
State elections officials ordered a set of historic recall elections Friday, making Scott Walker the third governor in the nation to face a recall and Rebecca Kleefisch the first lieutenant governor to face one.
Primaries will be held May 8 and general elections June 5. For races that do not require primaries, the general elections will be May 8 - less than six weeks away.These are the same primary and recall election dates that will be used for the 4 State Senators who were also recalled.
Primaries are expected in most races, but which ones have primaries won't be clear until April 10, the deadline for candidates to file their nomination papers.
As GeoffT reminds us in the comments, the certification of the recalls ends Walkers ability to raise unlimited funds. He's now back under the normal campaign donation limits.
2 candidates have already announced they will run against Kleefisch, and 3 have announced they will run against Walker so primaries seem likely. It is uncertain if there will be primary elections for the State Senator recalls.
So far, here's the already announced lineup (more might jump in now that the recalls are certified:
Scott Walker Recall:
State Senator Kathleen Vinehout
Secretary of State Douglas LaFollette
Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch recall:
Mahlon Mitchell, President of the Professional Fire Fighters of Wisconsin
Bruce Berman, a former supervisor on the Marinette County Board and a contract truck driver, who labels himself a conservative
State Senator Pam Galloway (resigned) recall, Wausau, currently empty seat:
State Rep. Donna Seidel
State Senator Van Wanggaard recall, Racine:
former State Sen. John Lehman
State Senator Terry Moulton recall, Chippewa Falls:
former State Representative Kristen Dexter
State Senator and former Republican Majority Leader (now co-leader with Pam Galloways resignation - hahahaha) Scott Fitzgerald recall:
The awesome recaller and now contender Lori Compas
Here's the statement from the Wisconsin Democratic Party:
"Today, for the first time in Wisconsin history, a recall election was certified against a sitting governor.Another link to the story here.
"This is no great cause for celebration, mainly because the reasons for the recall are so grave.
"This is accountability in the style of Wisconsin. More than a million strong, we did not want to walk this path — we were brought onto it by Scott Walker and his radical excesses and reckless use of power.
I'll keep adding to this story as more information becomes available.
No, you didn't miss Update 1. It's up inside the body of the story (mainly the addition of candidates and beefing up of the original post)
News Dump #1 (and it's early yet) involves the revelation that Scott Walkers campaign hired a Chicago consulting firm (with a detectives license!) to review the recall petitions against him.
Walker's campaign finance records show he paid a total of $109,255 to Navigant Consulting in November and December.
Walker spokeswoman Ciara Matthews said the firm "provided consulting services to the campaign on the petition collection and verification process," but declined to elaborate.
Interesting how the widely publicized meme of Mickey Mouse and Hitler as signatories to the petitions didn't pan out for Walker. Current reporting indicated a very small number of duplicate and illegible signatures were the only ones thrown out by the GAB.
Republicans are now outwith their response to the recall cerification:
Ben Sparks, spokesman for the state Republican Party, said he was confident the public would vote to keep Walker and Kleefisch in office.Sounds like they need some cheese to go with their whine.
"There was little doubt that union activists would be able to rally their liberal base to force this expensive and baseless recall election," his statement said. "Regardless, Wisconsinites in every corner of the state are already hard at work defending Governor Walker and Lieutenant Governor Kleefisch from the union bosses who are desperately trying to return our state to the failed liberal policies of the previous administration."
Update 4: Here Come The Attack Ads Edition:
The Republican Governors Association (under the guise of the organization Right Direction) has 2 new attack ads out.
Here's the one against Kathleen Falk:
And another one against Tom Barrett (who is running for re-election as Milwaukee Mayor - election April 3 - and hasn't announced he's even running against Walker):
Money is on only one side here (lies, too), but we've got People Power.
Update 5: Snotty Weighs In(prepare for more whining):
"I predicted five, six months ago or more that when all the out of state money and influence came in that there would ultimately be a recall election," Walker told reporters while on a visit to Technical Metal Specialties, Inc., a metal fabrication factory on Milwaukee's South Side.Get your barf bag ready, folks:
"I think we have a very clear choice between whether or not we go back to the days of double digit tax increases billion dollar budget deficits or record job losses like we saw in the past before we were in office in Wisconsin and what we see right now in Illinois," Walker said. "Or do we continue down the positive foundation we’ve built in Wisconsin to move our state forward. My hope is just as we earned the trust of the majority of voters in 2010 that we’ll have a chance to earn that trust again this June. So I look forward to sharing that message."
"Just doing my job will help," Walker said about his prospects. "Along the way we'll draw the contrasts because clearly no matter who the Democrats ultimately put up it will be someone who embraces policies similar to (Gov.) Pat Quinn in Illinois."
Walker said he wasn't surprised that nearly one million signatures were collected to force the recall.Yeah, getting voters out is something you made sure we'll have trouble doing with your Voter Suppression Law that you rammed through. Snotty fears the voters because he knows we have seen what he's done to our state. Money for his backers, peel backs from everyone else. And needing tens of millions of dollars in ads to prop up his sorry poll numbers isn't a good sign. Keep whistling and lying your way past that graveyard, Governor. The recall is coming for you. And the John Doe Probe is nipping at your heels, too.
"Remember, it's a lot easier to collect signatures than to get people to vote. Even if you assume every person who signed a signature is gong to vote, that's still fewer people than who voted for me for governor the last time. So my hope is we worked hard to earn the majority of the trust of the voters in 2010 and we'll have a chance to do the same come this June."
Update 6: Mike Tate, Chairman of the Wisconsin Democratic Party has just posted here on Daily Kos. Please stop in and show him some Kossack love.
Update 7: John Doe Probe Edition: Kelly Reindfleisch, former Scott Walker aide who has been charged with 4 felonies for misconduct in office, got some bad news today. She's been trying to get a venue change for her trial, moving it out of Milwaukee County to more friendly Columbia County, but today a judge said that the trial will be held in Milwaukee County.
... Judge David Hansher said the alleged crimes by Rindfleisch happened in Milwaukee County.UPDATE 8: YOWSA EDITION!: A federal judge just ruled that Act 10, the FitzWalker Law that removed most collective bargaining rights for public employees is UNCONSTITUTIONAL!
"She was neither employed nor paid by Columbia County, nor did she allegedly violate the trust of anyone in Columbia County," Hansher said. "Columbia County might be a nice place to visit but it would be the wrong and improper place" for Rindfleisch's trial, the judge said.
This is breaking now:
A federal judge in Madison on Friday ruled that portions of Act 10 - which removed most collective bargaining for most public employees - are unconstitutional.More as information becomes available.
Seven major unions had challenged the fact that Act 10 required absolute majority union recertification and denied voluntary union dues deductions as to general employee unions.
The court found those provisions violated equal protection and First Amendment rights, considering that the same rules did not apply to unions for public safety workers like police and firefighters, and the state could not state a rational basis for the distinction.
As I read it, the crux of the case was in seperating state troopers, police, and firefighters (for political reasons) with intact union rights and setting up a second class of public employees without them. Additionally, the court took issue with the unprecidented need to recertify a union every single year with the same procedure as a new group of employees uses to establish a union in the first place. I'm still reading.
The judge has order reinstatement of automatic dues deduction for public employees and an end to the annual recertification for public employee unions.
I am not seeing a reversal of the law that states that wages only (under a cap by the State) can be collectively bargained. This restriction prevents bargaining for benefits or workplace concerns such as safety, class size, or staffing.
Update 9: Two For One Edition: You get 2 updates for the price of 1.
Tom Barrett is in!
In a Friday email to supporters, Barrett, who has twice run unsuccessfully for governor, announced that he will be making a third bid for the state's highest office as part of the recall election of Gov. Scott Walker.
"We need to bring our state back." Barrett wrote in the note. "Wisconsin needs a governor who is focused on jobs, not ideology; a leader committed to bringing our state together and healing political wounds, not pitting people against each other and catering to the special interests.
"This is the governor I will be for the people of Wisconsin."
If elected, the second-term mayor said he would "fight to restore collective bargaining rights, because it's the right thing to do, and it's necessary to heal Wisconsin."His re-election as Mayor of Milwaukee on April 3 is virtually guarenteed. Barrett jumping in to run against Walker has been anticipated. People expected him to wait either until after the recall was certified (which happened today) or after the April 3 election to announce.
He concluded, "Starting tomorrow, I will crisscross the state, taking our message directly to the people in every corner and working everyday to restore our values and move Wisconsin forward. With you standing with me, I know we will prevail."
Another simultaneous announcementwas made by the GOP stating they were planning on running fake Democrats to ensure primaries in the State Senate recall elections.
Within hours, the state Republican Party said it would run fake Democrats in all the races, ensuring there will be primaries.
"The protest candidates will run as Democrats to guarantee that there is one clear date for the primary election and one clear date for the general election," said Stephan Thomas, the party's executive director.Sleazebags.
He said the move was made because otherwise some or all of the general elections for state senators would happen the same day as the primary for governor - when Democrats flood to the polls to pick their candidate for governor.
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It's after 5:30 PM here in Milwaukee, so I think the news dumps are done. The worst news today are the Fake Dems and Keith Olbermann leaving Current (I has a major sad). Bu there's good news and awesome news and it's been an amazing News Dump Friday.
I'll be getting ready to go out with noiseofrain, badscience and other awesome folks for the Overpass Light Brigade. Noiseofrain made an E and D so we can do R E C A L L E D on the overpass tonight. Look for his photo diary this weekend.