Thursday, June 16, 2011

The general election in the recall races will be Aug. 9

[the following is from the Winnebago County Labor Council...]

State Sens. Randy Hopper and four other Senate Republicans will have an extra month to prepare to defend their seats against recall challenges.

Rather than facing the recall election on July 12, Democrats hoping to unseat the Republicans because of their support of a controversial law limiting collective bargaining by government employees will all face primary election challenges on that day.

The general election in the recall races will be Aug. 9.

Three people registered by Tuesday's filing deadline to run as Democrats in the recall election of Hopper, R-Fond du Lac, forcing a July 12 primary election. Hopper represents the 18th Senate District, which includes Oshkosh, portions of rural Winnebago County, and most of Fond du Lac County.

The candidates are Jessica King of Oshkosh, who is endorsed by the Democratic Party; John Buckstaff of the Town of Vinland, who was recruited by the state Republican Party to run as a Democrat; and John Michael Curry of Waupun, who withdrew from the race, according to his website. King narrowly lost to Hopper in the 2008 election.

Candidates needed to turn in 400 signatures to earn a place on the ballot. The state Government Accountability Board had not validated the signatures on the papers of all of the candidates late Tuesday.

The Wisconsin Republican Party actively encouraged Republicans to run as Democrats to force Democrats into primary elections.

Democrats are decrying the move as a dishonest manipulation of the election system. But Republican backers say this is a way for them to give the incumbents more time to prepare for the election.

The Democratic Party says it doesn't want to let Republicans decide whether there is a primary or not, so they are going to have multiple Democratic candidates to ensure there is a primary in each race.

A Republican "protest candidate" also filed to run as a Democrat in the 14th Senate District, where Luther Olsen, R-Ripon, is being challenged by Rep. Fred Clark, a Democrat from Baraboo. Rol Church of Wautoma, who was recruited by the Republican Party, has filed papers to run against Clark as a Democrat. A third candidate, Robert Forseth of Waupaca also filed papers to run as a Democrat.

Primary elections will also be held prior to the recall elections of Sens. Robert Cowles of Allouez, Alberta Darling of River Hills, Sheila Hardsdorf of River Falls and Dan Kapanke of La Crosse.

Three Democrats, Sens. Jim Holperin of Conover, Robert Wirch of Pleasant Prairie and Dave Hansen of Green Bay, face recall elections on July 19. Recall petitions were circulated against those senators after they joined their colleagues in leaving the state to delay a vote on the collective bargaining measure.



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