There’s a history of using recall against elected officials in Wisconsin and if I were Scott Walker, I’d be nervous. But knowing he can’t be recalled for the first year of his term, he probably feels safe right now. He’s got ten more months of get out of jail free cards and I suspect he’ll clown those ten months up right good. They can’t impeach him due to the GOP majority as an impeachment requires a 2/3 majority in both houses. Therefore, the only way to stop Walker is to go after the eight GOP State Senators who are currently eligible for ousting and a new survey shows that the signatures are there to pull this off.
While the recall has most often been used against those accused or convicted of official misconduct or serious criminal acts, recalls over public policy choices have become increasingly common. To wit, I give you the successful recall of seven members of the Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors in 2002 due to changes to the pension system for county employees. Uh huh. The following were recalled from the MCB via recall over retirement pension issues: Executive F. Thomas Ament (resigned before election); Board Chair Karen Ordinans; and Board Supervisors Penny Podell, LeAnn Launstein, David Jasenski, Kathy Arciszewski, James McGuigan, and Linda Ryan.
Ironically, Scott Walker was elected to replace Ament in a special election. I hope this gives people pause; your local elections are where the Palins and the Walkers debut their tyrannical platforms. Attention at the local level can at least provide a speed bump to the political ascent of the lawless. But you would think Walker would know the power of a recall, since it gave him his opening into politics.
And then there was the 1995 recall of George Petak, a Republican, whose great crime was that he changed his vote to yes on a controversial funding bill for Miller Park stadium which –- wait for it -– used public tax money to fund a private sports team. Petak is a perfect example of the sort of reverse socialism Walker is embracing in Wisconsin today. Nine months later, Petak was recalled from office.
Is Scotty scared yet? Naw, he’s not clever enough to see the writing on the wall. But his buddies might be. Wisconsin also recalled another elected official, but this is the only official not recalled over a policy dispute. Gary George was a Democratic state senator who was recalled in November 2003, because of corruption charges.
Gosh it seems like Recalls and Wisconsin go together like tea bags and garbage pails. How about a total recall? A total recall against the following Republicans will require significantly fewer signatures than are needed for the recall of a governor; they need 25% of the number of ballots cast for the official, which comes in around 17,000 signatures per senator. The eight vulnerable State Senators are Luther Olsen, Robert Cowles, Randy Hopper, Glenn Grothman, Mary Lazich, Dan Kapanke, Alberta Darling and Sheila Harsdorf.
A Strategic Telemetry survey “….shows opposition to Walker’s plan to end collective bargaining for state employees, and strong support for recalling Walker. Based on these results, the eight Republican State Senators subject to immediate recall are in significant jeopardy if they support Walker’s proposal….The survey shows Walker and eight Republican State Senators vulnerable to recall. An estimated 1.1 million Wisconsin voters would sign a recall petition if asked.”
The people will be asking really soon if Walker doesn’t read the writing on the windows he bolted shut. Oh, wait, they already are. Wisconsin Recall, a grassroots movement, is seeking to recall all eight senators, “We’re sure these are all good people to those they love, and many, if not all, among us would die fighting for their right to hold and express their views, even in their political life. But the war they have waged on working people and families is over the line. They must be held accountable, and this recall effort is our means to do just that.”
Their mission is:
1.) Treat Wisconsinites of all political perspectives with dignity and respect in our political processes, not deliberately pitting one group or class against the other;
2.) Embrace debate, discussion, negotiation and compromise, rather than ideological dogma, heavy-handedness, deception, lying and stripping certain citizens of their cherished, hard-won rights ;
3.) Never again co-mingle the taking away of fundamental rights of citizens with the budget process;
4.) Not ask or force one class of citizens to unduly bear a burden when, at the same time, another favored class is being politically rewarded with a lighter burden;
5.) Acknowledge that we are among the lowest-taxed nations in the industrialized world, and abandon the childish budgeting approach that says revenues cannot be increased or fairly shared by everyone, even in the face of already lean but increasing expenses.
If these dignified demands were to catch fire and Americans stood together instead of allowing corporations to divide us for their own profit, imagine where we could be right now.
The fine print says that only one recall petition may be filed against any official during the same term of office, so the people of Wisconsin will only have one chance to get rid of Scotty when his first year bell tolls. As for the rest of these folks, the people don’t have a lot to lose by mounting a recall campaign against them. And guess what? Recent polls say that if the election was held today, the Democrat would win over Scott Walker and the shift is coming from Republican union members. Nice work, Tea Party.
Get ready for the ride of your life. The clock is ticking to total recall.