In 2011, until yesterday, Wisconsinites who favor limited government and responsible taxation and spending had to suffer in silence, as their voices were obliterated by union and leftist protestors.
But when Wisconsin’s silenced majority finally got its chance to speak out by voting in Tuesday’s recall elections, it positively roared.
The recall elections grew out of Republican governor Scott Walker’s budget repair bill, which, among many other things, eliminated collective bargaining by most state employees over pensions and benefits. It was ultimately signed into law, but led to a tumultuous series of union demonstrations in the state capital, Madison. Such demonstrations were strongly supported by President Obama, who accused Walker and his supporters of engaging in an “assault on unions.”
Unions and other leftist organizations began shoveling millions of dollars into the Wisconsin recall elections in July, vowing to paralyze Gov. Walker by depriving him of the Republican majorities in the state senate and assembly. Ultimately, some $14 million was spent by such groups, an unprecedented effort. Unionistas vow to recall Walker himself as soon as they can. http://www.unitedwisconsin.com/
The races were hard to handicap, due to the incoming millions of dollars, the rarity of recall elections in Wisconsin, and the rural nature of the portions of the state involved. On election day, anecdotal reports seemed to support a record-busting turnout, though it was unclear which side such turnouts favored. Most commentators were calling the races as “too close to call.”
But Republicans in four of the state senate races decided yesterday didn’t even break a sweat in fending off Democratic recall challenges. Republican Senators Robert Cowles of Green Bay and Sheila Harsdorf of River Falls were declared winners in their districts shortly after the polls closed. They were followed quickly by Sen. Luther Olson of Ripon.
The “crown jewel” race – the one Democrats were salivating to win – was in suburbs north of Milwaukee, for the seat held by Sen. Alberta Darling (R-River Hills), co-chair of the legislative joint committee on finance. The race was not declared for Darling until about 1 a.m. Wednesday, but that was because huge turnouts in pro-Darling territory slowed down the vote counting process. Darling’s war room knew early on she would win by a sizable margin, and she did.
The two races lost by Republicans – in La Crosse and Fond du Lac/Oshkosh – were expected losses.
The recall process was a grand Democratic plan to unwind the November 2010 election, when Wisconsin voters chose Walker over his Democratic opponent and gave control of both chambers of the legislature to Republicans. Instead, union forces spent millions of dollars to find out it was no fluke. http://www.jsonline.com/news/statepolitics/106580158.html Nor was the state supreme court race in April an accident, when voters chose a conservative incumbent justice over a liberal union supporter.
It has been an extremely productive seven months for Republicans due to their November victories. Since Walker took office in 2011, the legislature passed and he signed a budget bill eliminating a $3 billion budget deficit without raising taxes.And the state has added 39,300 private sector jobs since Walker took office. In June alone, 9,500 private sector jobs were added in the state, so Wisconsin accounted for more than half of the 18,000 jobs added nationally in that month.
The recall elections also served as a practice run for the 2012 presidential election. The Democratic challengers in Wisconsin ran largely negative campaigns, as President Obama plans to do. Olsen was accused of forcing a small elementary school to close due to state budget cuts, a charge proven false by mainstream media.
Darling was accused of favoring elimination of Medicare, depriving the poor of health care, and enacting tax breaks for the rich and for large corporations. These campaign issues were false and did not resonate with Wisconsin voters. It’s a familiar refrain, but Wisconsin voters didn’t fall for the class warfare.
President Obama plans a bus “listening” tour next week in northeastern Iowa, northern Illinois, and southern Minnesota to hear what Americans are saying about jobs and the economy. Mr. President, how about a short detour to Wisconsin?