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DC Protest 1

Wisconsin Republicans went through with it:

State election officials have finalized the list of candidates who are challenging six Republican state senators in recall elections this summer.

The Government Accountability Board said Friday it had received the necessary paperwork from 12 challengers. None of the nomination papers was challenged, so the GAB has now locked in the election dates.

All six races will start with a Democratic primary on July 12. According to the final paperwork, each primary will include one Democratic candidate and a "fake" Democrat, part of a Republican strategy that forces Democrats to spend more resources per race.

In response, Wisconsin Democrats have dropped their plan to run "placeholder" candidates alongside both the real Democrats and the fake Democrats. Democrats were worried that Republicans would only run fake Dems in some of the recalls, resulting voter confusion that would benefit Republicans. However, with Republicans filing fake Dems in all six elections, that is no longer a concern:

Democrats decried the tactic, then worried that Republicans might take their strategy a step further by forcing primaries in only some of the races. That would cause some general elections to be delayed but not others, leading to varied election dates and possible voter confusion.

So Democrats planned to run "placeholders" — Democratic candidates with no intention of winning — simply to ensure that all six primaries were held and, as a result, that all recall elections were on the same day. They had lined up placeholders in three of the six races.

However, after Republicans did enter fake Democratic candidates in all six of the races, Democrats said they no longer needed placeholders.

With this latest development, the calendar for the recall elections may finally be set. The Democratic primaries will take place on July 12, and the Republican primaries on July 19. The general election involving the six Republican incumbents will take place on August 9, and the general elections involving that three Democratic incumbents will take place on August 16.

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Comment Preferences

  •  My faith in democracy (with an imaginary D) (7+ / 0-)

    has been restored.  May the best fake fake fake nobody.

    Once in a while you get shown the light, in the strangest of places if you look at it right.

    by darthstar on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 03:47:59 PM PDT

    •  Election Fraud is still a concern (0+ / 0-)

      When Joanne Kloppenberg stopped contesting, she threw away the perfect opportunity to keep shining the light on election fraud. For the Waukesha counts and recounts to have been so unverifiable (votes and recount minutes not forthcoming at the deadline and kept by one already-compromised person on her personal computer) and the election still to be accepted by the wronged party- marked a new win for those wishing to steal our elections.

      They got away with it then, with the stakes so high, they will do it again.

      The only way to PREVENT election fraud is to get a court order to NOT MOVE ANY BALLOTS from the voting booths UNTIL they are hand-counted by representatives from BOTH parties.

      If you fail to do that, you may as well kiss your elections good-bye. Results will then depend on how much graft they can get away with.

  •  Man, they just cannot (21+ / 0-)

    help themselves, can they? Cheating in elections is now a codified part of the "Republican" party.

    If the future's looking dark, we're the ones who have to shine Though we live in trying times we're the ones who have to try

    by Purple Priestess on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 03:48:58 PM PDT

  •  What plans do the Dems have to educate the public (12+ / 0-)

    about the fake dems the GOPers put on the ticket? It's not going to be helpful if the low information voters get snookered into voting for the wrong person.

  •  possibly the ugliest state level GOP party in (16+ / 0-)

    the country.  There must be some real fear and loathing in Wisconsin these days for an entire political party to act in such a blatantly venal manner without any apparent concern for electoral repercussions.  Protesters notwithstanding, the Wisconsin GOP must be representative of some very real political undercurrents in the state.  

    "In a nation ruled by swine, all pigs are upwardly mobile." Hunter S. Thompson

    by Keith930 on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 03:53:42 PM PDT

    •  Very astute (5+ / 0-)

      Some of the fear is from that good old American standard: racial fear.  Wisconsin still has relatively low minority populations. More significantly, the level of intermixing is almost nil outside the large urban areas.  Even there the segregation is strong.  I think Milwaukee is ranked the most separated big city in the US.

      So there is a very real fear of the Dark Skinned Ones in some segments - not so much raw racial hatred as simple fear of "different people".  There's not enough experience living in contact with one another.  Parts of Wisconsin are 50 years behind the times in this regard.

      Stop. Stand up. Make a sign. Walk around in public. Be polite and orderly and the rest takes care of itself. Want to shake up the Plutocrats? Demonstrate your attention to politics.

      by Quicklund on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 04:57:45 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Credit (4+ / 0-)

        I think you also have to give credit for that sorry ass Walker to the Koch bros.

        •  That's not exactly an undercurrent (0+ / 0-)

          That comes under proximate cause.

          Stop. Stand up. Make a sign. Walk around in public. Be polite and orderly and the rest takes care of itself. Want to shake up the Plutocrats? Demonstrate your attention to politics.

          by Quicklund on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 06:57:13 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  A few months ago, there was an interesting (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Quicklund

        diary that demonstrated that many low income whites regard the growing economic power of blacks as a zero sum game.  Basically, they believe the economic growth blacks made were at the expense of whites.  

        Throw into the mix the belief that immigrants are also stealing jobs from whites as well as benefitting from public services - schools, medical care - paid for with 'white' tax dollars and you have a block of voters totally paranoid of a 'takeover' by people of color.  That is, the more people of color get, the less that whites will get instead of a stronger economy for all.

        The Republicans are going to conintue to exploit this as much as they can.

        It keeps the Tea Party motivated, which is why it worked in 2010.

        The question for Wisconsin is then, will the same voters who thought they were protecting themselves flood to the polls in August, or will the voters who believe 'a rising tide lifts all boats' be the ones that win the election.

        I'm hoping for the latter, because I'm scared for the US if the paranoid view of the country today is the one that still wins elections.

        HylasBrook @62 - fiesty, fiery, and fierce

        by HylasBrook on Sun Jun 19, 2011 at 08:45:27 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Do they have fake Dem voters... (5+ / 0-)

    to vote for the fake Dem candidates? You would expect that activists would participate in these elections.

    Reform the Democratic Party. We've been lulled to sleep by false promises of hope from a corporatist cabal for too long.

    by masswaster on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 03:54:49 PM PDT

    •  It's about forcing a delay (6+ / 0-)

      A few hundred activists could be rallied to vote cross-ballot, but it's an entirely unreliable gambit if you try to get the masses to vote cross-ballot.  Besides, there are genuine GOP primaries running the same day in  most of the districts.

      Stop. Stand up. Make a sign. Walk around in public. Be polite and orderly and the rest takes care of itself. Want to shake up the Plutocrats? Demonstrate your attention to politics.

      by Quicklund on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 04:29:34 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Are there other elections going on? According to (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Eric Nelson, Quicklund, Matt Z

        the diary, the Republican elections are on different days. Are these closed primaries or open primaries?

        "Someone just turned the lights on in the bar and the sexiest state doesn't look so pretty anymore" CA Treasurer Bill Lockyer on Texas budget mess

        by CaliSista on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 10:46:03 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Different days for different districts (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          CaliSista

          In District X there will be a 'real' Dem and a 'fake' Dem.  On the same day there will be 'real' GOP candidates going up against the incumbent.  But now that you mention it, that does not include as many districts as I was originally thinking.  

          Stop. Stand up. Make a sign. Walk around in public. Be polite and orderly and the rest takes care of itself. Want to shake up the Plutocrats? Demonstrate your attention to politics.

          by Quicklund on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 11:54:10 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  For the Senate seats or something else? (0+ / 0-)

            I'm a bit confused.

            IIRC, here in CA when we had the unfortunate recall that brought us the Governator/Impregnator, there was a yes/no on recalling Davis and then a 'who do you want' free for all for replacing him if the yes votes prevailed.

            In WI based on what I'm reading, there doesn't seem to be that initial yea or nay part and also eventually the election will consist of only one candidate per party. True?

            Both the Repubs and Democrats seem to have two dates so what difference does fielding the fakaDem have on the process? I know you've said to delay the election but two dates already seem to be set.

            "Someone just turned the lights on in the bar and the sexiest state doesn't look so pretty anymore" CA Treasurer Bill Lockyer on Texas budget mess

            by CaliSista on Sun Jun 19, 2011 at 02:05:25 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  August 9 is the day Richard Nixon was forced (13+ / 0-)

    to resign the Presidency (in 1974), so it seems auspicious that we're having the Republican recalls on that date.  

    Shirley Chisholm was right. Our Republic is in deep trouble.

    by Big River Bandido on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 03:57:30 PM PDT

  •  In Oregon this happened last (13+ / 0-)

    year.  Rod Monroe is a Democrat who represents the poorest parts of the Portland metro area, and the richest city in Oregon, the suburb of Happy Valley, in the state senate.  He was challenged in the primary by Dave Mowry, a former Republican candidate for the state house in 2004 and 2006.

    It was thought that this would be easy to deal with.  An incumbent is heavily favored in a primary, especially if the challenger is a fake.

    Then right wing interest groups dumped a bunch of money into the race on behalf of the fake Democrat.

    Senate Democratic officials charge that Mowry is actually a stealth Republican candidate getting aid from two groups connected with former state Republican Chairman Kevin Mannix.  "It feels like they've cooked up this strategy" to elect a Republican in Democratic clothing, said Ben Unger, who heads the Senate Democratic Caucus campaign effort.

    We won (I was in the district, and canvassed and voted for Monroe), but it was scary.

    "Intolerance is something which belongs to the religions we have rejected." - J.J. Rousseau -6.38, -4.15

    by James Allen on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 03:57:58 PM PDT

  •  Kinda makes ya wonder about turn out (0+ / 0-)

    So, if I'm a voter...am I gonna come out to vote?

    Seems confusing and nebulous, sorta.

    -- **Nothing sucks more than that moment during an argument when you realize you're wrong.**

    by r2did2 on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 04:02:20 PM PDT

  •  How do all the deadlines work out? Can the (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    COBALT1928, Eric Nelson

    Repubs withdraw at the last second and cause the election dates to get scrambled?

    -- We are just regular people informed on issues

    by mike101 on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 04:04:00 PM PDT

    •  Election continues even w/withdrawals ... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      COBALT1928, CaliSista

      I think.  Once the ballots are printed and the dates announced, that is that.  It's similar to those times when a candidate dies before election day.  The show must go on.

      Stop. Stand up. Make a sign. Walk around in public. Be polite and orderly and the rest takes care of itself. Want to shake up the Plutocrats? Demonstrate your attention to politics.

      by Quicklund on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 04:50:35 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Don't kid yourselves as to the reason (13+ / 0-)

    they're doing this: they're sweating bullets. They know it really, truly doesn't look good for them.

    It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

    by karmsy on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 04:04:34 PM PDT

  •  Are WI media picking up the story (9+ / 0-)

    of the fake Democrats?

    To my mind it certainly makes the Republicans look desperate and sleazy.


    In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice; but in practice, there always is a difference. - Yogi Berra

    by blue aardvark on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 04:10:59 PM PDT

  •  Ok (9+ / 0-)

    Now, what's to stop the Republicans from crossing over and voting for the fake Democrats in the primary? Does Wisconsin have open primaries?

    If so, this may be a problem after all.

    •  Open primaries, yes (5+ / 0-)

      The inent here seems to be delaying the general elections by four weeks.  that assures the GOP 4 more weeks of majority power in the state senate.

      It is theoretically possible for GOP voters to cross over to the Democratic ballot, but that is hard to do in principle.  It would be possible to get a few hundred party activists to do it.  But it is much harder to get the masses to do so.  An top of all that, most races have a real GOP primary to vote in running the same day. So it's mostly about forcing a 4-week delay.

      Stop. Stand up. Make a sign. Walk around in public. Be polite and orderly and the rest takes care of itself. Want to shake up the Plutocrats? Demonstrate your attention to politics.

      by Quicklund on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 04:25:24 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  real GOP primary? (0+ / 0-)

        even during the July 12 recall primaries?  I don't think there's any Republican races happening the same day.

        What you say is true generally - that there are republican primary races running the same day as democratic primary races and therefore the rule that you can't vote in both on the same day is enough to dissuade cross-party spoiler votes.

        But this case is even worse than normal (-) because the republican and democratic primaries are not on the same day, and even if they were they aren't in the same districts anyway.

        (-) I still consider it a bad thing to have open primaries because it still allows for spoiler voting in races where one side is just has lots of incumbents and therefore that party's primary isn't as big of a deal.  If your party is just running the incumbents, then you don't lose much by voting in the wrong party and just leaving your own party's primary alone.

  •  Assholes n/t (7+ / 0-)

    An imbalance between rich and poor is the oldest and most fatal ailment of all republics - Plutarch

    by Anthony Page aka SecondComing on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 04:29:21 PM PDT

  •  The dates MAY be set... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Quicklund, Eric Nelson

    but remember that there are still court challenges to the GAB rulings out there.

    •  True (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      progressivebadger

      But the odds are the elections will go forward.  The 6 GOP suits are flimsy.  The 3 Democratic suits can point to actual fraud, but it is unlikely a court will insert it's opinion over the GAB's.  There is nothing inherently "wrong" in what the GAB did.  So it would come down to opinion vs opinion.

      Then again, a GOP judicial activist would have no problem ruling anyway the GOP needed.  But the shoe in on our foot ... so ... no.

      Stop. Stand up. Make a sign. Walk around in public. Be polite and orderly and the rest takes care of itself. Want to shake up the Plutocrats? Demonstrate your attention to politics.

      by Quicklund on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 04:42:01 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Quite frankly (0+ / 0-)

    I feel like this makes the Democrats look just as bad - since no one seems to have planned for this eventuality.  It makes Democrats look stupid or naive, and people don't like to vote for people who can be so easily outsmarted.

    •  huh? (7+ / 0-)

      The Democrats knew the Republicans were going to do this.  And the Democrats could have done the same thing but decided against it. I don't see how this makes the Democrats look stupid, naive or outsmarted though.  

      People don't like it when politicians play dirty.  And in this case the Republicans are not hiding the fact that they are playing a dirty and unethical game with the people of Wisconsin.

    •  Well, you are wrong (9+ / 0-)

      Part of the story here is about the Democrat's contingency plan that was designed to counter a possible counter-march in the GOP's tactics.  

      Aside from the "non-existent" plan the Democrats had, there's not much else that could be done.  in a democracy, you see, people are allowed to run for office.  political parties cannot prevent that.  And that is doubly true under Wisconsin's open primaries laws.

      So regardless of how stupid Democrats look from Virginia, they look pretty smart from here in Wisconsin.

      Stop. Stand up. Make a sign. Walk around in public. Be polite and orderly and the rest takes care of itself. Want to shake up the Plutocrats? Demonstrate your attention to politics.

      by Quicklund on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 04:47:31 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  That would only hold true if... (0+ / 0-)

      ... there was some strategy you could imagine the Democrats taking that would have helped prevent this.  There isn't one.

  •  Turn the table on them (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    equern

    File "Republicans" in the recall of republicans.

    Turn the slime on them....

    "Proud to proclaim: I am a Bleeding Heart Liberal"

    by sara seattle on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 04:49:13 PM PDT

    •  Shoulda read your comment first! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sara seattle

      We're on the same wavelength, Sara!

      What separates us, divides us, and diminishes the human spirit.

      by equern on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 05:13:47 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I was ashamed that the WI Dems (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      rja, COBALT1928, Matt Z, Steven Mading

      even publicly CONSIDERED this.

      It would have gained us nothing, and lowered ourselves to their level -- leaping off the moral high ground to wallow with the GOP in the slime.

      Fortunately, every last one of the REAL Dem candidates were against running fake-Republicans.

      If an elephant has its foot on the tail of a mouse and you say that you are neutral, the mouse will not appreciate your neutrality. - Bishop Desmond Tutu

      by AnnieJo on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 05:15:45 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  There is a difference (0+ / 0-)

        between having considered it first --

        but now that the Republicans are actually doing it -- you now have a choice between rolling over and playing dead -- or going after them.

        Depends on how much you want to win at this point - I do not know if you live in Wisconsin -- but if I did - I would want to get Democrats elected

        unless you want to see more Republicans decimating Wisconsin.

        Your choice....

        "Proud to proclaim: I am a Bleeding Heart Liberal"

        by sara seattle on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 06:06:44 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Read Quicklund's comments. (5+ / 0-)

          They're not trying to win these primaries.  The goal is to delay the general election, thus giving their corporate smear-ad-cash more time to work.

          There is some slime that is too foul to roll in -- especially when it doesn't even do any good to go there.

          By the way, the Dems didn't even consider it first.  They considered it in retaliation, then came to their senses.

          And yes, I live in Wisconsin.  And this budget reduces our family's take-home pay by 10%, slashes public school funding for our two elementary-school daughters, and jeopardizes my younger developmentally-disabled daughter's Medicaid funding.  So please don't assume that I don't have a HUGE stake in this.

          If an elephant has its foot on the tail of a mouse and you say that you are neutral, the mouse will not appreciate your neutrality. - Bishop Desmond Tutu

          by AnnieJo on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 07:07:07 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Wanting to elect Democrats (0+ / 0-)

          should mean you stop advocating that they throw away the one biggest thing they have that is attracting people to them in Wisconsin right now and that is precisely THAT they are not being slimy in this like the Republicans are.

          As soon as you allow the meme to take hold that says "oh, both sides are just as corrupt - they're all rotten" the Dems lose.

          Please, please please STOP advocating the the Dems throw this advantage away.

          The Republicans are trying to sell the idea that "Oh, the Dems don't care about you - they're just upset that they lost and they're being crybabies about it, thats all."

          Right now that statement is a lie and the Dems can push back against it.  If the Dems do what you, and every other "why won't they be more slimy like the republians damit" advocates are pushing for, that statement would stop being a lie.

  •  Quicklund is right (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    AnnieJo
  •  Did WI Dems Retaliate? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Land of Enchantment

    This was not news. The WI Dems knew the WI GOPS were up to mega-dirty tricks like this...so why didn't they file FAKE GOP candidates to run the GOP primary???

    I'd be amazed if they were that far ahead of the ball, the one striking feature of the Dems is as a whole, and as a party, they are amazingly flatfooted.

    What separates us, divides us, and diminishes the human spirit.

    by equern on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 05:12:08 PM PDT

    •  One reason to do this... (0+ / 0-)

      ... is that they extend the calendar.  Keep their seats.  Buy themselves several more weeks, a month or two, to do their damage.  Can't repeal anything over the governor's veto, y'know?

      The river always wins. (Mark Twain)

      by Land of Enchantment on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 05:49:54 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Because there are Republican being primaried (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      rja, progressivebadger

      for other offices in most districts. This means that Republicans won't cross over to screw things up. A few, yes, but they won't block the real Dem candidate.

      If that weren't true, then it would make sense to hold your nose and run a fake R against the recalled R jerk incumbent.

      The votes will be balanced between the two parties. So the high road is feasible.

      "All people are born alike - except Republicans and Democrats" - Groucho Marx

      by GrumpyOldGeek on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 05:52:26 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Will people stop asking the Dems to be slimy! (0+ / 0-)

      As soon as you allow the meme to take hold that says "oh, both sides are just as corrupt - they're all rotten in this" the Dems lose.

      Please, please please STOP advocating the the Dems throw this advantage away.

      We who live in Wisconsin know very well that this "they're all the same - the Dems are trying to grab power for power's sake by overturning the election results in a recall" bullshit is part of what the Republicans are selling.  We all know some gullible fool that has repeated the talking point in arguments that the 14 Dems leaving the state is exactly equal to the Republicans closing out the public, lying to the Dems about the times they're going to vote to ensure the dems aren't there on time, etc.

      Clean governance IS the differentiating point between the Repubs and Dems in Wisconsin right now.  Will people please please please stop insisting that refusing to throw that away is identical to being flatfooted!

      It's one thing to disagree with the tactic of choosing not to engage in dirty pool, and argue why you think it's a good idea to do it.  It's something else entirely to dishonestly portray a deliberate decision not to purse a tactic with a failure to notice the opportunity existed.

      Choosing not to engage in a tactic is not the same thing as being caught flatfooted.  It's dishonest to portray it like it is.

  •  Jennifer Shilling (7+ / 0-)

    She's running in WI-17 (IIRC.)  And there's yard signs everywhere.  We drove through that district on the way to Minneapolis.  We were relieved when we looked it up and found that Shilling's a good Dem.  I know signs are not a guarantee of victory.  But there's really a lot of 'em, and could be a good sign.

    The river always wins. (Mark Twain)

    by Land of Enchantment on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 05:48:01 PM PDT

  •  Democracy-hating GOPers... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    COBALT1928, Eric Nelson, Matt Z

    at least this should give even more incentive to retake the state Senate in August.

    "The United States will not be able to dictate the pace and scope of this change. Only the people of the region can do that. But we can make a difference." 3/28/11

    by BarackStarObama on Sat Jun 18, 2011 at 06:08:23 PM PDT

  •  new voter laws... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    buckybadger1988, AnnieJo

    No discussion of the new voter laws and ensuant confusion?  I got off a very disheartening conversation with the mequon city clerk's office where the nice lady was horribly confused and admitted their website's voter information is now incorrect but doesn't seem to know what IS the correct new policy.  For example, we moved in-state in time for the new 28 day voter registration (changed from 10) but don't have bank statements, a new wisc. id, etc. and so normally could use family testifying for us (we are living with family for a month till we get on our feet financially here) - but apparently that's out.  So we need to get a bank account, with statement sent to us, a new id here, etc. just to vote ---

    Well, with this mess, I think it's best for Democrats that everyone has time to decipher the new cordon of official voter suppression before the general recall elections anyways, because folks on the ground seem to be terribly confused.

    Can't wait to see what she does when I pull out my tribal id.

  •  Can't the GOP exploit the open primary rules... (0+ / 0-)

    and try to nominate their fakes as the Democratic candidates? It seemed to me that the Dems were almost forced to run their own fakes to prevent this. Since there's no contest on the GOP side, the Republican voters can cross over and make it a contest.

  •  Can voters vote in both primaries - closed or open (0+ / 0-)

    primary?

    With two separate dates for the primaries (how weird is that? The Board of Elections couldn't have declared one primary day to lessen expenses to districts and to make it easier for the voters?

    I assume there's some law dictating the double primary election dates?

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