Skip to main content

WI-solidarity-fist
There are two final state Senate recall elections in Wisconsin tomorrow night, both aimed at unseating Democratic incumbents. Now that Republicans have just a one-seat majority in the Senate, holding on to Democratic seats is vitally important. That's why Daily Kos asked Public Policy Polling to survey these races over the weekend (8/12-14), and fortunately, we have double-digit leads in both:

SD-22:

Robert Wirch (D-inc): 55
Jonathan Steitz (R): 42
Undecided: 3
(MoE: ±2.9%)

SD-12:

Jim Holperin (D-inc): 55
Kim Simac (R): 41
Undecided: 4
(MoE: ±2.6%)

Judging by presidential performance, Bob Wirch's district always seemed to be at the outer edge of vulnerability for Democrats. Of the six GOP-held seats that were up for recall last week, the closest was Dan Kapanke's slightly bluer SD-32. Democrat Jen Shilling managed to beat Kapanke, who had the advantage of being an incumbent, by 10 points; in that context, Wirch's 13-point margin makes a lot of sense. Wirch is fortunate that Dem enthusiasm doesn't seem to have flagged much since last Tuesday, since he narrowly trails Steitz among independents, 45 to 48.

Jim Holperin, however, was always the most vulnerable Democrat; going by presidential numbers, his 12th district is comparable to Luther Olsen's or Alberta Darling's — tough territory we lost a week ago, despite our challengers turning in performances that represented improvements over recent Dem efforts in those areas. Holperin benefits from being an incumbent, though, and from drawing a relatively weak challenger in the form of Kim Simac, whose Tea Party credentials appear to be turning off independents more than they're exciting movement conservatives. Interestingly, while Holperin's district on paper looks redder than Wirch's, Barack Obama's job approval is better there (-5 versus -10), and independents in particular are less grumpy with the President (-18 vs. -34).

So where does this leave us? If everything goes as planned, Democrats will retain their 16 seats in the state Senate to the GOP's 17, putting the occasionally reasonable Republican Dale Schultz in the cat-bird seat. At that point, Democrats should consider further recalls early next year, when the Republicans first elected (or re-elected) in 2010 will be eligible. The playing field will be much more advantageous to us, since that batch of GOP-held seats contains a bunch that are bluer than most of those we contested this year, and it also includes a boatload of freshmen swept in on last year's red tide. We'll also only need one seat rather than three, and it's hard to see any of our remaining seats being vulnerable. (My understanding is that recalls would be held under the old district lines, rather than the new maps the legislature just passed and Gov. Scott Walker just signed.)

First, though, let's win tomorrow!

Originally posted to Daily Kos Elections on Mon Aug 15, 2011 at 07:55 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site