Thursday, April 21, 2011

Good news from Wisconsin -- but the battle is still just beginning


by Ken

I don't know about you, but these days I'm finding most of the political-related news so grim that when my clock radio turns on in the morning, tuned to NPR's Morning Edition and timed to an on-the-hour news summary, my first waking impulse is to shut the damned thing off. Here, however, is some good news.

Probably most of you also received this e-mail today from Jim Dean of Democracy for America. But the message is too important to ignore. So here it is again if you've already seen it, and if you haven't, well, here it is. Howie reported earlier today that the recall movement has spread to Michigan. There's been an important development in the first state using the recall device to try to restore political sanity. Take it away, Jim.
Today, we made history in Wisconsin.

WI Democrats -- supported by over 2,600 DFA volunteers on the ground -- submitted over 150% of the signatures needed to demand the recall election of the 5th Republican State Senator: Alberta Darling.

This is unprecedented. In the history of Wisconsin there have been only 4 recall elections ever. Now, in just the last two months, we've legally required 5.

Republicans from Madison to Washington D.C. are watching every single step of this fight and we're not going to let up until we win. With signature gathering continuing for the 3 Republicans left who are eligible for recall, it's vital we keep covering TV with our hard-hitting real people ad. If we hit $600,000 by Friday night, we'll be able to stay on the air in target districts through the end of next week. Please contribute now to make it happen.

Our TV ad, which we created with our friends at the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, features life-long Republican voter Mike Crump.
"As a Republican my entire life I'm appalled at what Scott Walker and the Republicans did. This hurts my family. It's about my kids in school."

Mike is one of the many reasons MSNBC's Rachel Maddow, Ed Schultz, Lawrence O'Donnell, and Cenk Uygur have all praised our Wisconsin ads. It's also why local activists in Wisconsin have asked us to keep it on TV.

Please watch the ad and contribute now.

Thanks to the support we've had so far from DFA members nationwide, we're closer than ever to flipping the WI Senate and stopping Governor Walker's anti-families agenda.

Working together with our members on the ground, we won't stop until we win. Thank you for everything you do.


Jim Dean, Chair
Democracy for America

I should note that I've reduced Jim's fund-raising links to just the one, on the theory that DownWithTyranny readers don't need quite that hammering to know whether or not this is something you want to participate in. Nor do DWT readers need any further priming on the importance of the Wisconsin Senate recall effort, all the more so in the wake of that, er, strange Supreme Court election that was just rigged held, encouraging the state's Stalinist governor, Scott Walker that nothing stands between him and his goal of turning Wisconsin into a subsidiary of Koch Industries.


Thanks to commenter Southern Beale for calling my attention to Amanda Terkel's HuffPost post, "Wisconsin Recall Fight Heats Up As Democrats Complain Of 'Shots For Signatures' Deals," with a report that Republicans seeking to recall Democratic senators who left the state to deprive the rubber-stamp Senate Republicans of a quorum are using a novel technique: offering shots to petition signers, who may or may not know what it is they're being liquored up to sign. (A spokesman for the state's Government Accountability Board, Reid Magney, said, "Our attorneys have been unable to find anything in state law that would prohibit offering drinks or anything for signing a petition," but said they "strongly encourage people not to do so because it taints the process."
The Wisconsin Democratic Party is planning to file a complaint to the state Government Accountability Board alleging that a Republican signature-gatherer offered alcoholic beverages to a group of women to get them to sign a recall petition against a Democratic state senator.

Although that's not illegal in Wisconsin, it is strongly discouraged and, Democrats argue, evidence that Republicans don't really have enough grassroots support for their recall campaigns.

Republicans have until early next week to file recall petitions against eight Democratic state senators, more than half of the caucus that left the state in February to protest and delay the GOP's budget repair bill, which included a provision stripping public employees of their collective bargaining rights. So far, the state Republican Party has not filed any recall petitions, although they are reportedly planning to file two -- against state Sens. Dave Hansen and Jim Holperin -- on Thursday.
A bartender at John's Main Event in Burlington was audio-recorded offering shots for signatures, and an update passes on a screen shot supplied by a HuffPost reader in Burlington of Scott the bartender's Facebook page, where he makes fun of protesters who challenged his petition-gathering.


Yes, Frankie Heck's got Royal Wedding fever,
and she's got it bad.

"We won the Civil War, so we don't have to care."
-- eldest Heck offspring Axl, responding to his mother's frenzied anticipation of the Royal Wedding

I was going to write about this tonight, with reference to last night's episode of The Middle, in which we saw Frankie experiencing the great event as one of just a tad larger than life-or-death importance. The nice thing is that even if you haven't finished your preparations yet, you still have a fair amount of time when you get home from work tomorrow -- especially if you live in one of the western time zones (and especially if you have access to 24-hour shopping).

So we'll put off to tomorrow Frankie's response to Mike's bewildering lack of enthusiasm: "Look, I barely cared about our wedding. Tell me why this is such a big deal. What'd this girl ever do?"


. . . and you could be right, This may possibly reflect just how much attention I've been paying. Anyway, I'll still have my more or less final words on the subject this Friday night -- along with why I think we should have a monarchy, plus how I think we could swing it.

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At 6:11 PM, Blogger said...

I'm sure you've heard that the Republicans trying to recall Wisconsin Dems have stooped to their predictable lows: in this case, offering chicks in bars shots of boose for their signature. This link has actual audio.

Dying to know how someone would capture audio of this. Is it a Dem set-up? Was it legit? It's all just very strange.

At 7:29 PM, Anonymous me said...

As a Republican my entire life I'm appalled at what Scott Walker and the Republicans did.

I have no sympathy for life-long republicans. They, and no one else, are responsible for the disaster that has overtaken our country. Fuck 'em.

At 7:55 PM, Blogger KenInNY said...

Thanks for the link, Southern Beale. No, I hadn't seen Amanda T's HuffPost post. I'm adding an update to include this.



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