Dems begin to back away from Walker recall

They want it bad. Democrats are anxious to do anything to prove they are still relevant in the state of Wisconsin. But, an example of their first step towards reality may be in this post by Zach at Blogging Blue.

…I think a spring recall election of Gov. Walker would be a terrible strategic move, especially considering Wisconsin will have an April Republican Presidential primary. The Wisconsin Republican presidential primary will obviously turn out conservative voters in droves, especially if the Republican presidential nomination has not been decided, and putting a gubernatorial recall election on the same ballot as a contested Republican presidential primary would be utterly stupid, at least in my opinion.

And into all that fist pumping (I really must get to that) a little real-world thinking slides in…or not. Because catch the rest of it:

It would seem to me to make more sense to initiate a recall election against Gov. Walker so that a recall election would coincide with the 2012 presidential election, an election that will see President Barack Obama at the top of every ballot in the state.

Surely he jests. Following four years of failed national rhetoric, he wants a recall for a Republican on the November 2012 ticket, too? Not to worry. A few comments like this put the matter to rest:

I fear that the Democratic Party of Wisconsin will attempt to delay the recall in hopes of using its coattails in November. If Mike Tate makes any efforts to do so, he is likely to inspire a lot of Green Party or write-in protest votes downticket and possibly cost a few sitting Dems their seats.

Ergo, there is no good time for Democrats to be mounting a Walker recall campaign. And they are right. If they move too quickly, they’ll run into a Republican primary and bunches of right-sided voters; if they move to slowly they’ve allowed Walker’s changes to work and possibly influence voters favorably.

Governor Walker, it looks like it’s okay for you to get comfortable in your new roll.

I’m going to toss in one of my pet peeves for this post – the dreaded survey. This Badger Poll has been quoted by both the MJS and even the Washington Post as a reason Governor Scott Walker should be concerned. Humbug.

That poll has a very small sample size of 556. When you skip to page 13 of the report and read How The Poll Was Done you see the margin of error at +/-4.2%. I’ll quote a comment from the Huffington Post just to round out this argument:

Are they serious? Anyone who knows anything about polls knows that anything with a margin of error of over 3% is not very credible.

I sort of remember blowing through anything more than +/-3.5% was a bad idea. It’s also remarkably disingenuous for the Poll folk to make blanket phrases like “of Wisconsinites” with the sample they used. Only 441 of those responding even voted last November making that margin of error even greater.

Political polls are commissioned to help craft spin. Read carefully, let them bolster your side of the argument if you’d like, but don’t expect them to always be an accurate reflection of voters’ thinking.


  1. Cindy. let me be the first. to even think of a recall election of a state governor is childish.most voters had enough of it and don’t want to hear anymore political rhetoric.

  2. Just so we’re clear, despite how you want to spin things for your readers, I’m not backing away from a recall of Gov. Walker.

    I’m glad we could clear that up.

  3. No, you and the rest of WisDems just can’t find a good time to do it, that’s all.

  4. The Lorax says:

    The survey is flawed, but I don’t think it’s all that far off. True that there isn’t a “good time” for the recall.

  5. everytime is a good time to recall Scott Walker and everytime is a justified time to recall Scotty Walker. The thing to be sure of is that we do it at the most effective time.

  6. Brilliant analysis, Jeff. Thank you for confirming your absolute loss of grip on reality.

    What goes around comes around — the tactics your ilk use now will come back to bite you. Flee the state, call in sick, fake doctor notes, recall because you don’t get your way are all now fair play.

  7. Anonymous says:

    It’s clearly a fool’s errand to try to “time” an election. The idea that Walker supporters would turn out for a primary election yet sit on their hands for a recall is laughable. And there will certainly be a recall – Feelings run too deep and the bar isn’t that high. One would think that as a matter of Democrat strategy, better to get that ball rolling as early as possible. (One web site says petitions can start circulating on November 3.) My crystal ball says union anger will not abate, every voter who pulled the lever for Barrett will turn out to oppose Walker, and turnout in Milwaukee County far outstrips what was seen for the Prosser election. This will not be a cakewalk for the Gov.

  8. Randy in Richmond says:

    We have recalls in Virginia only we call it the next election.

  9. completely off-topic, you really live in Virginia? how did you end up contributing to a WI blog(I am glad you did i enjoy the debate)?

    On topic: what we have in Wisconsin is DEMOCRACY 24/7 the way the founders envisioned. They did not set it up so people pay attention one week every two years, they wanted people involved all day everyday!

  10. Randy in Richmond says:

    Yes, I live in a section of Richmond called ‘the fan’:

    In 2008 during the Presidential race a woman named Anne Kilkenny, who lived in Alaska, wrote an expose on Sarah Palin at a time when no one knew anything at all about her. In checking that out I happened onto Fairly Conservative because of the same name thing. Cindy also had a post on Anne Kilkenny’s Palin expose that went sorta viral with hundreds of comments from far and wide. Been here ever since with occasional breaks for Irish goings-on.

    I understand your Wisconsin take on what the founders envisioned–you see, my forefathers were many of the founders. Your capital is named for one of them. Thanks for asking. 🙂

  11. Yes, Jeff, I picked Randy in Richmond up on the internet. There. I said it.

  12. *Looks like a cool place to live…I love places like that.

    * I am fully aware of Founders and Madison is one of my favorites…

    * Cindy, there seems to be alot of that in WI with Women righty bloggers….

  13. Ummm..A balanced budget or a return to billion dollar deficits…I think I will wait to see who Americans for Insolvency backs.

  14. @anonymous, a contested GOP presidential primary brings out voters who aren’t interested in governor, but if they come out, are more likely to vote for the one with an (R) after his name. Most people aren’t as political as people who post to political blogs. 🙂

    If these recalls prove successful in flipping the Senate and the Governor’s office, it establishes a dangerous precedent. People need to be given time to govern. If we wanted one-year terms for our elected officials, we’d have elections every year. We complain that politicians only care about getting through the next election. Subjecting everyone we don’t like to recalls just makes things worse. Doyle wasn’t recalled, despite his faults. Neither should Walker, despite his faults. Recall should be used for gross misconduct, not because we don’t like how someone voted on a legislative matter.

  15. To say that Scott Walker and the senators are being recalled over a vote is a very limited blatantly false talking point from the right.

    When you campaign on one thing then when you get sworn in “drop the bomb” on taking away peoples rights, that is the definition of gross misconduct.

    Why not elect everyone every year? the same way that the republicans want to certify unions every year?

  16. Jeff, it’s absolutely false that Walker didn’t tell you this was coming. You continue to spread what is a blatant lie.

    Check out this WEAC flyer. It quotes a number of news articles.

    You knew it, but if you yell loud enough, your version might stick. I won’t let it stick. The reality remains: a Republican was elected Governor because a majority of voters wanted what he suggested for this state.

  17. Cindy so you are accusing scott Walker of lying under oath….interesting.

    Connolly: I am asking you a very specific question did you bring up collective bargaining during the campaign.

    Walker: No.

    How should we proceed with that? Demand his resignation or will you help me circulate recall papers?? maybe call your local reps and demand his impeachment?

  18. I’m not accusing Walker of lying. You are.

    The quotes are from newspaper articles. We’ll have to research the articles to see if Walker has quotes there. You’re a big boy. You can do that. Just be sure to provide links. I am saying according to that flyer, the newspaper indicated collective bargaining was on the table.

    Never mind. I did it for you. Murray said it. Not Walker.

    That’s in part because of the close relationship between WEAC and a separate major insurer for school employees, WEA Trust, that the union created, said Ryan Murray, campaign policy adviser for Walker. He said school districts often have some of the most expensive health benefits in Wisconsin and could receive cheaper insurance through the state if they didn’t have to negotiate with unions about who would insure their members.

    “The way the proposal would work is we would take the choice out of the collective bargaining process,” Murray said.

  19. Randy in Richmond says:

    Thankfully there is no recall for federally elected positions. But if there was such a program and I wanted to recall President Obama, I would look to you for my first signature. Here’s just a few reasons why, using your logic with Walker, Obama should be recalled:

    Listed are all campaign promises broken or not kept by President Obama:

    * Allow 5 days of public access and comments before signing a bill.

    * Double the Peace Corps by 2011.

    *Close Guantanamo Bay Detention Center.

    * Repeal the Bush Tax cuts for higher incomes.

    * Expand child and dependent care credits.

    * Introduce a comprehensive immigration bill in his first year.

    * Eliminate income taxes for seniors making less than $50,000.

    And there are lots more.

  20. Cindy, it’s quanttum leap from “curb” collective barginning rights to “eliminating” them completely, your WEAC flyer reference.

    Speaking of quantum leaps, Randy, how did the President get into this fray?

    And to all the Walker recall adicts: live with it. Put your efforts in finding and backing an candidate for 2014.

  21. Randy in Richmond says:

    If you don’t get the connection, RMS, I need not elaborate.

  22. Cindy, the point I made is Scott Walker never campaigned on it then “dropped the bomb” also his words. SO it is absolutely true that Walker did not tell anyone its coming. Had he campaigned on it we would be discussing Governor Barrett and everyone knows that.

    Randy I have major problems with much that President Obama has done(esp reauthorizing the bus tax cuts, how has that worked for us?) but thats a different post not really relevant here.

    A better example is right to work. Many people think the republicans want to take us to a right to work(for less) state. many republicans have said no on the campaign trail. So if they actually do introduce right to work (for less) legislation will it be a lie because they said no, or will it be expected because many people do expect it?

  23. Randy in Richmond says:

    But it’s not a lie if Obama makes a promise he doesn’t keep ? And it is 100 % relevant but since it doesn’t fit your position some of you choose to nix the comparison.

    Jeff, I live in a 100 % right-to-work state with an unemployment rate of 6.0 % and at the close of our last State Budget we had a surplus of $400 million. Virginia’s average annual income per capita is $48,210 which is 9th for all states. Wisconsin’s average annual income is $40,321 which is 25th for all states. Virginia is taxed at a state level of 9.1 % and Wisconsin at a state level of 11 %. This ranks Virginia 33rd highest and Wisconsin 4th highest.

    You might want to at least take a look at right-to-work versus forced union. In it’s latest Top States for Business list, CNBC rated Virginia 2nd and Wisconsin 29th. Of the top ten states 7 were right-to-work states and of the bottom ten 7 were union forced states.

  24. He didn’t say it, but he campaigned on it. Or his campaign certainly managed to get it in there. And now that you are corrected you suddenly find a “better example.” That’s classic.

    I’m not wasting time on you today, Jeff. You bore me.

    RMS – I think the point was if we can get all excited about recalling a governor, couldn’t we become equally excited about recalling a President? For all that you and Randy are alike, putting you in the same room may never be a good idea. I’m certain, though, that you would both agree to the “live with it” sentiment. I know I do.