Recall elections are going forward in Wisconsin after yesterday’s Democratic primary. The primary was notable for having 6 fake Democrats on the ballot. The fake democrats were placed on the ballot by the state Republican party to force the primary and give incumbent lawmakers more time ahead of the recall vote. In yesterday’s primary all six seats were won by real Democrats with significant winning margins. The winners will face incumbents in a recall election on August 9.
Voters in Wisconsin are holding a recall election after Republican lawmakers in the state Senate pushed through significant changes to the state’s collective bargaining rules earlier this year. The measure was unpopular among voters and led to months of protests in and around the capitol. Since then, budget battles over government spending have only served to make incumbents even more unpopular in the eyes of Wisconsin voters.
Republicans in Wisconsin maintain a controlling majority in the Senate and Governorship making opposition difficult. Even after voters forced a recall election Republicans forced a costly democratic primary ahead of the recall by running fake democrats in each of the seats up for recall. The maneuver was designed to give incumbent Republican senators more time to sell their ideas to the voters while Democrats moved through the primary process.
However, voters saw through the attempt and put only real democrats on the final ballot.
Activist networks on both sides are also out in force. Local Democrat and Republican groups have found themselves bolstered by support from national activist networks which are flooding the state in support of their respective parties. Even though all recall election winners will be forced to run again in November, the recall election has already surpassed normal elections in terms of funding and national attention.
In total, nine seats will be decided through the recall process – six Republicans and three Democrats. Supporters and activist networks claim that the recall could be an indicator of how elections will play out nationally during the 2012 cycle. However, the winners of these elections may face slightly altered districts when they run again in November due to redistricting resulting from the last census.
If the Democrats win three of the seats up for grabs they will regain control of the Wisconsin Senate.