Wisconsin Recall Elections: What Goes Around Comes Around

By Richard Thayer

Wisconsin will be holding recall elections this coming Tuesday and on August 16. Six Republicans who had a hand in stripping public unions of their bargaining rights are up for recall on Tuesday. Attempting to “strip” them of their seats are six strong Democratic contenders: three state representatives, a former county executive, a former deputy mayor and a popular teacher. According to a recent poll by Daily Koss, one of the challengers has a huge lead, two lead by narrow margins, and three others are trailing by just a few points.

Two Democrats will face recall on August 16. Despite some political shenanigans by the state GOP leading up to the recall efforts for Democratic State Senator Dave Hansen in July, Hansen won 66 to 31 percent. Republican leadership had run “fake” Democrats in that primary election in an effort to confuse the voting public. It didn’t work.

But the state’s Republican leadership still has more tricks up their sleeves. For one, they’ve been busy gerrymandering legislative districts in what Jay Heck of Common Cause of Wisconsin calls “the most restrictive, blatantly partisan and ill-conceived voter identification legislation in the nation.”

And Mike McCabe of the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign had this to say: “In a democracy voters are supposed to choose their representatives, not the other way around. This does violence to this basic principle of democracy…You are only here because you are under orders to get this completed ahead of the recall elections in August, because you know you could lose total control over the way these maps are redrawn after those recall elections occur.”

In addition to the heavily slanted redistricting plan favoring Republicans, there’s also a voter ID plan in the works. Instead of making it easier for people to vote, this plan does just the opposite, setting up obstacles to the poor, the elderly, and minorities.

The Scott Walker regime is also considering closing or reducing hours at Department of Motor Vehicle offices in Democratic districts.

How low can they go?

Big Business is pouring oodles of money–we’re talking millions–into these local elections in an effort to keep their puppets in office. But the pro-labor, pro-progressive, pro-democracy, pro-middle class forces are very energetic, highly motivated and well-organized.

A lot of attention will be on the Badger State on Tuesday. The results of that election could very well be inspiration for other states to take similar action.

A lot more than just those Republican seats are at stake.

As goes Wisconsin, so goes the rest of the country.

For more on Wisconsin’s recall elections, go here.


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