The Big Tuesday
(Political cartoon by Matt Wuerker and published June 3, 2012 at Daily Kos. Click on image to enlarge and then return.)
Well, today's the day for the big recall attempt in Wisconsin. As Mitt Wuerker's brilliant cartoon points out, big money turned out for Governor Scott Walker. All the recall forces could count on were grassroots small contributions and volunteers to get out the vote. As of Sunday, Walker was ahead in the polls, but turnout will be crucial. It would have been nice if the DNC had forked over some cash to offset the 20 to 1 ratio, but apparently the president and national party leaders didn't want to get involved. And that's a shame. No, wait: it's downright shameful.
I understand the argument that Mr. Walker was elected and can be de-elected when his first term is up, and that recalls should be limited to felonious behavior. I understand the argument, I just don't agree with it. The people usually making that argument were the same sorts to lead and fund the successful recall efforts of California Governor Gray Davis a decade ago. I guess it depends on the party of the sitting official. And I don't think my old home state can stand another three years of this bozo.
What has intrigued me about this election, however, are the numerous questions raised by it. Has Wisconsin turned red over the past four years? Has the country? Can elections be bought by big-money and non-stop political commercials? Should out-of-state donors and volunteers have that big a part on local elections? What role should national parties have on local elections?
And then there's the whole issue of what a victory for either side portends for November. It's clear that President Obama thinks that it really will have no bearing on the national election. He thinks he can still carry Wisconsin even if Walker escapes with a victory. The GOP thinks a Walker victory gives Romney and all Republican candidates a wedge for November. I'm not so sure on either assessment.
What I am reasonably certain of, however, is that some speculation is downright weird, and the best example of that is Marc Thiessen's recent column in the Washington Post.
...there are a significant number of independents in Wisconsin who support both Scott Walker and Barack Obama. The president does not want to alienate those voters by getting into a fight with Walker. The last thing Obama wants is to force those Walker-Obama independents to choose.
But there is someone who would love to force them to choose: Mitt Romney. And that is precisely why Romney may put Scott Walker on the GOP ticket this November.
A victory tomorrow would make Walker the instant front-runner for the GOP vice presidential nod. [Emphasis added.]
Apparently Mr. Thiessen hasn't paid attention to news reports: Walker just might be indicted in the reasonably near future. Several of his "employees" while he was Milwaukee County Executive have already been indicted and are cooperating with investigators. Walker has transferred over $100,000 from his campaign funds to his legal defense fund. He is tainted with a capital T. But, hey! That's irrelevant to Republicans, I guess.
So: today I will be holding my breath and lighting candles and doing some old fashioned God-bothering. It may not do any good, but it will get me through the day and early evening. And, once the results are in, I guess I'll just have to take a deep breath and start looking toward November, regardless of the results.