Today six recall elections are being held for seats in the Wisconsin Senate, with five Democratic challengers running. The recall bids grew out of this spring’s bitter fight over an anti-union law backed by Republican Governor Scott Walker. Opponents of the law are targeting six Republican state senators who voted for the law.
On July 22, Democrat Dave Hansen won in the first of nine recall elections in Wisconsin, easily defending his seat in the state Senate from a Republican David Vanderleest. The remaining two elections challenging the Democrats will occur on August 16.
A record amount of money has been donated from sources around the country to Republican candidates. According to Bloomberg, the Wisconsin Democracy Club estimates that $40 million has been spent on the election in total. Mike McCabe, executive director of Wisconsin Democracy Club, remarked, “The spending is so far off the charts. It does not compare to anything we’ve ever seen. It is an indication of how much things have been stirred up here.”
If Democrats gain two additional seats, they will win control of the Senate and greatly improve their chance of thwarting further Walker initiatives.