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Scott Walker Pays $81.5K Gov’t Salary to Drunk-Driving Loser Son of Crony
April 5, 2011 7:49 AM   Subscribe

Wisconsin Governor Walker's recent union busting bill did more than just bust unions. It also converts 37 top agency attorneys, communications officials and legislative liaisons from civil service positions to jobs appointed by the governor. Meet Brian Deschane a 20-something college drop-out with two drunk driving convictions. He the new man in charge of environmental regulations in Wisconsin.

His father is Jerry Deschane, executive vice president and longtime lobbyist for the Madison-based Wisconsin Builders Association.

Previously....
posted by Bonzai (556 comments total) 22 users marked this as a favorite

 
$81,500. Not bad for a 20-something. Wonder if he will get a pension.
posted by R. Mutt at 7:54 AM on April 5, 2011 [12 favorites]


Brian could instantly convert the outrage on Reddit by just coming out and supporting trees.

But seriously, I'm surprised that anyone is surprised by this. Isn't this how it's supposed to work? You pay money and you get rewards?
posted by Old'n'Busted at 7:56 AM on April 5, 2011 [6 favorites]


People without college degrees are losers.
posted by klue at 7:57 AM on April 5, 2011 [4 favorites]


He graduated from the college of life, man. Makes your stupid Harvard look like preschool.
posted by chasing at 7:59 AM on April 5, 2011 [14 favorites]


I emailed the Governor today and asked him how much I would have to give to get my son a job.

Also, please, if you live in Wisconsin, vote today.
posted by drezdn at 7:59 AM on April 5, 2011 [12 favorites]


The State is broke. The State is not broke.
posted by localhuman at 7:59 AM on April 5, 2011 [6 favorites]


It's always cute, the assumption that people like to make, that "unions and civil service = seniority" while "no protections = meritocracy." Nice to see it come to light that these institutions don't just impede merit-based decisions, they're aimed squarely at cronyism and nepotism. Like this merit-based appointment?
posted by tyllwin at 7:59 AM on April 5, 2011 [20 favorites]




But seriously, I'm surprised that anyone is surprised by this. Isn't this how it's supposed to work? You pay money and you get rewards?

Um no, that's not how it's supposed to work.
posted by ghharr at 8:00 AM on April 5, 2011 [10 favorites]


People without college degrees are losers.

Even if he was a college graduate, he's a direct beneficiary of a corrupt system, and therefore he's part of the problem. Sucks to be him, I suppose.
posted by muddgirl at 8:00 AM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


It just goes to show you, kids, you can become whatever you want in America. No one is holding you back. A college dropout, an unremarkable dude making $81,500 in a field in which he has no experience. I'm violently inspired right now. Just look at them bootstraps.
posted by black rainbows at 8:02 AM on April 5, 2011 [32 favorites]


Things That Apply To Me
mid-20s
no college degree (slowly coming, because I've been busy working my real job)
very little management experience

Things That Don't Apply To Me
two drunken-driving convictions
"It doesn't look like he's ever had a real job"



Gorvernor Walker, I'll be working in Milwaukee all week. Feel free to give me a call.
posted by Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug at 8:02 AM on April 5, 2011 [22 favorites]


I'm really not seeing the scandal here. When I was fourteen, my dad was friends with the local golf pro and a friendly word or two got me a summer job on the driving range.
posted by The Card Cheat at 8:03 AM on April 5, 2011 [7 favorites]


But seriously, I'm surprised that anyone is surprised by this. Isn't this how it's supposed to work? You pay money and you get rewards?

No, one of the main purposes of the civil service system was to do away with the excesses and abuses of the spoils system.
posted by jedicus at 8:03 AM on April 5, 2011 [26 favorites]


and therefore he's part of the problem. Sucks to be him, I suppose.

Your right on the first part, but I imagine he's pretty happy with himself right now, actually.
posted by Hoenikker at 8:03 AM on April 5, 2011


I wonder how he'll get to work. 2 DUI convictions in Illinois gets you a mandatory prison stay and pretty much zero chance of getting a license for years.

They sure do things different up there in Wisconsin.
posted by Max Power at 8:03 AM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


People without college degrees are losers.

Bill Gates would disagree.
posted by Old'n'Busted at 8:05 AM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


It makes sense if you think about it - he has proven experience dealing with circumstances where the situation has been driven into the ditch by drunken idiots.
posted by Salvor Hardin at 8:05 AM on April 5, 2011 [9 favorites]


Huh. Usually MetaFilter really likes twentysomething college dropouts who make a lot of money and party a lot. But I guess putting Kanye or Lady GaGa in charge of environmental regulation wouldn't be a very good idea, either.
posted by The World Famous at 8:05 AM on April 5, 2011 [3 favorites]


Meet Brian Deschane a 20-something college drop-out with two drunk driving convictions. He the new man in charge of environmental regulations in Wisconsin.

come on, now, it's not like he was throwing beer cans out the window
posted by pyramid termite at 8:05 AM on April 5, 2011 [3 favorites]


Future presidential material.
posted by Artw at 8:05 AM on April 5, 2011 [22 favorites]


I just can't get over the U.S. these days. It used to be the envy of the world, but now it's like a flu other countries catch.
posted by The Card Cheat at 8:06 AM on April 5, 2011 [81 favorites]


I wonder how he'll get to work.

I'm sure there's money in the budget to install an ignition interlock device in his state-owned vehicle.
posted by peeedro at 8:06 AM on April 5, 2011 [3 favorites]


I'm really not seeing the scandal here. When I was fourteen, my dad was friends with the local golf pro and a friendly word or two got me a summer job on the driving range.

This is the second one to come to light in a the past few weeks.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 8:06 AM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


but I imagine he's pretty happy with himself right now, actually.

Bill Gates would disagree.

Seems like some people missed their cup of coffee this morning. Hint: Sometimes we say the opposite of what we actually think.
posted by muddgirl at 8:08 AM on April 5, 2011 [6 favorites]


Would suck to be a middle age career environmental attorney with a new boss.
posted by R. Mutt at 8:08 AM on April 5, 2011 [13 favorites]




2 DUI convictions in Illinois gets you a mandatory prison stay and pretty much zero chance of getting a license for years.
Wisconsin has notoriously weak enforcement of drunk driving laws. It also has notoriously high rates of adult binge drinking, which I'm sure is related in some way to the rampant, unpunished drunk driving, although it's hard to know whether it's a cause or an effect. Anyway, I'm not convinced that being twice convicted of drunk driving is going to bother anyone in Wisconsin, because they seem as a state to pretty much have decided that killing people because you couldn't be fucked to call a cab is no big deal.
posted by craichead at 8:11 AM on April 5, 2011 [4 favorites]


Would suck to be a middle age career environmental attorney with a new boss.

Really, it would suck to be a middle-age career environmental attorney at all. Although I do know one who really loves his job. But that's because he's the rare sort of environmental attorney who gets to carry a gun and has a badge.
posted by The World Famous at 8:12 AM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


When I was fourteen, my dad was friends with the local golf pro and a friendly word or two got me a summer job on the driving range.

My family owned the local feed and farm equipment store. I worked there for four years before I graduated HS. I guess this makes me a bad person, since I directly benefited from nepotism of a local businessman.

Shit like what Scott Walker did has gone on forever, and will go on forever. The only real reason it's outrageous is that the kid is 20 years old, and nobody at that age has a fucking clue how to do any job other than drink and party, and his arrest record attests to that. If Walker handed the job over to someone 35-ish with a modicum of experience, I doubt anyone would be bitching about it very much, no matter who his daddy was.

I honestly think it's fucking hilarious that a tea-party winner is behaving exactly like everyone said they would (seriously? You expected anything else?), and I feel that Wisconsin is getting exactly what they fucking deserve for electing this guy. Just like Ohio is getting the rogering we deserve.
posted by Old'n'Busted at 8:13 AM on April 5, 2011 [3 favorites]


When conservatives talk about reform, this is the sort of thing they want to happen. Remember that.
posted by aramaic at 8:14 AM on April 5, 2011 [45 favorites]


It also has notoriously high rates of adult binge drinking, which I'm sure is related in some way to the rampant, unpunished drunk driving, although it's hard to know whether it's a cause or an effect.

Outside of Madison and Milwaukee, public transportation - and hell, even taxis - are pretty much nonexistant.

That and WI features some of the most liberal drinking laws in the US. My son turned 16 yesterday, and yet even before that, it is perfectly legal for me to take him to a bar and buy him drinks.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 8:15 AM on April 5, 2011


People without college degrees are losers.

nooo, but shit for experience, public endangering, hired trough nepotistic practices wankers should be losers, not winners. what ever happened to "personal accountability"? Oh, right that only applies if your parents don't have the cabbage to partially fund those in power.


It's funny how "personal accountability" goes out the window when we talk about things like estate taxes.
posted by edgeways at 8:15 AM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


But that's because he's the rare sort of environmental attorney who gets to carry a gun and has a badge.

Um, cool?! Tell us more! Where does this job exist?
posted by Salvor Hardin at 8:16 AM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


This comment from the Steven Seagal tank thread seems appropriate here.
posted by Uncle Ira at 8:16 AM on April 5, 2011 [3 favorites]


craichead: " It also has notoriously high rates of adult binge drinking"

You know, if I were a middle-class guy in Wisconsin under this fuckhead's administration, I'd probably drink til I could only see through one eye at a time, too.

(note: I live in Missouri, where they're trying to get rid of child labor laws; we have a state rep who says it'd be good for kids to go hungry to teach their parents a lesson, but is not laughed out of the pigpen; and where they're also trying to bust *all* unions under the usual "right to work" bullshit.)
posted by notsnot at 8:18 AM on April 5, 2011 [5 favorites]


People without college degrees with two DUI convictions are losers. Seriously - how do you even have friends, no less a job, after that, without some serious rehab?
posted by you're a kitty! at 8:18 AM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


People without college degrees are losers.
Bill Gates would disagree.


If a loser is measured by money, then Bill and this 20 year old is filled with Win.
posted by rough ashlar at 8:19 AM on April 5, 2011


Why is it so many wealthy or well-connected folks only ever seem to have a problem with others holding positions or taking home salaries they may not have earned when it comes to people outside their social station? The merest suggestion that some teacher might not be the idealized self-sacrificing miracle-worker we might hope is enough to drive them into an apoplectic frenzy of budget cutting and education "reform." The same goes for the suggestion that someone somewhere might be benefiting too much from some social program. But when it comes to their own friends and families, the question of whether or not those folks deserve what they get never seems to come up.

Never mind. That's a rhetorical question. It just sucks is all.
posted by saulgoodman at 8:20 AM on April 5, 2011 [45 favorites]


.... I feel that Wisconsin is getting exactly what they fucking deserve....

This meme has to end. Whenever there is some douchebag elected, based on lies and the manipulations of the weak and uneducated by the powerful (in cahoots with the sociopathic), someone always comes up with this idea.

The middle class that is being eviscerated and literally having their futures stolen away from them did not 'deserve this'.

The working poor who are holding on to a semblence of first-world life an now will be genuinely poor, did not 'deserve this'.

The people that will die or suffer health problems IN A DIRECT CAUSAL CHAIN* because of weakened environmental legislation and lack of access to affordable healthcare & soicial support networks, did not 'deserve this'.


Your frustration is understandable, but this is victim-blaming of the highest order.

Don't Mourn, ORGANIZE.

* We have a word for people that cause the deaths of others.
posted by lalochezia at 8:21 AM on April 5, 2011 [91 favorites]


> Oh, right that only applies if your parents don't have the cabbage to partially fund those in power.

Wait, what? The rabbits have taken over? Where was I?
posted by mmrtnt at 8:21 AM on April 5, 2011


How would you like to be the person who reports to young master Deschane, after more years in service than he has been alive?
posted by Xoebe at 8:22 AM on April 5, 2011 [11 favorites]


It's not just that he got the job because his dad was friends with Walker and helped get $121k into his coffers or that he didn't graduate college or has 2 DUIs. It's all of those combined and the minimal work experience point to someone who shouldn't be getting paid $81k by the state to manage people.
posted by drezdn at 8:22 AM on April 5, 2011 [10 favorites]


The Card Cheat: I'm really not seeing the scandal here. When I was fourteen, my dad was friends with the local golf pro and a friendly word or two got me a summer job on the driving range.

Man, if you can equate a $80,000 salaried position to your summer job, that must have been on kickass golf course.

Pogo_Fuzzybutt: This is the second one to come to light in a the past few weeks.

Don't you see, they're just streamlining the system! By sidestepping the formal hiring process, they're not doing "business as usual"! Go Mavericks! (Go lawsuits!)


Though I haven't read the kid's profile, it seems that if your dad can buy you a $80,000 per year job, he can pay down some of those DUI convictions to lesser offenses. Which then scares me more about what he did and got away with.
posted by filthy light thief at 8:22 AM on April 5, 2011 [5 favorites]


"Deschane's father said that during the gubernatorial contest he might have reminded Keith Gilkes, Walker's campaign manager and now chief of staff, that his son 'was out there and available.'"

"Might have reminded?" BWAHAHAHAHAHA !
posted by ericb at 8:25 AM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


Related: if Maine Gov. Paul LePage can get a recall effort kicked off because negative publicity surrounding a mural, you'd think Wisconsin could do something for this jerk. (Sure, LePaul had told the president to go to hell and the NAACP to, quote: Kiss my butt, but those are just words.)
posted by filthy light thief at 8:25 AM on April 5, 2011


Just an FYI, I'm pretty sure the kid is 27 not 20.
posted by drezdn at 8:25 AM on April 5, 2011


No, one of the main purposes of the civil service system was to do away with the excesses and abuses of the spoils system.

The teahadists want to take back thier country. You know, the one they had in 1828.
posted by T.D. Strange at 8:26 AM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


for the record Deschane is 27. Still pretty young, but not exactly 20.

And Old'n'Busted, seriously? I feel that Wisconsin is getting exactly what they fucking deserve for electing this guy...

So everyone who didn't vote for Walker deserves this? Everyone who was burnt out on the Democrats for one election and didn't vote deserve this? Walker expressly did not run on a platform of Union Busting, but never mind Wisconsin deserves him? As long as we can overthrow them we all need a Walker from time to time to remind us just how bad it can get. But, never mind I'm sure the "they are all the same" posse will arrive any moment now.
posted by edgeways at 8:26 AM on April 5, 2011 [3 favorites]



Your frustration is understandable, but this is victim-blaming of the highest order.


How is anyone a victim when they have the constitutional right to choose who leads them? In one sentence you chastise us for victim blaming and in the next you chide us to ORGANIZE. The middle class has consistently failed to organize over any of the shit that's gone down but someone it's not their fault and they are victims? No, sorry. Apathy, laziness or just plain exhaustion resulting in failure to use the constitutional tools given you does not earn you a victim badge.
posted by spicynuts at 8:26 AM on April 5, 2011 [5 favorites]


And why exactly did WI vote him into office?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:26 AM on April 5, 2011


I'm really not seeing the scandal here. When I was fourteen, my dad was friends with the local golf pro and a friendly word or two got me a summer job on the driving range.

Sonovabitch. I was 12 and one of my buddy's cousins was the caddy master at the local club and got me my start. Ahead of some other boys, I might add, so my "seniority" was always suspect yet easily overlooked by my participation in caddyshack fistfights and other activities. Also, I always had a job at my parents' pharmacy because a) I was told to get my ass over there and work and b) they owned it. If it weren't for them, I would've never had enough money with my allowance to support my tobacco and alcohol hobbies.

Who hasn't gotten a job via a social or blood connection. It's hard out there to walk in off the street with no prior experience or education and land a job with a stranger. This is business as usual in government, just ask any child of a local solon. If not with the very government that their parents help shape, then at least a client, supplier, vendor or any other business that needs to cash in on name recognition. There's nothing wrong with that, per se, as government jobs are there to give away, but there's something definitely wrong when some asshole gets the primo job for his idiot, substance-addled son with a checkered past and little in the way of experience, education or foresight.
posted by jsavimbi at 8:28 AM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


he can pay down some of those DUI convictions to lesser offenses.

It's in the Pledge to the Flag.

"With Liberty and Justice to all who can afford it."
posted by rough ashlar at 8:28 AM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


I'm really not seeing the scandal here. When I was fourteen, my dad was friends with the local golf pro and a friendly word or two got me a summer job on the driving range.

So, you don't think you were qualified for the job? You should have had a few courses in picking up balls before attempting this? They should have convened an interview committee?

Brian Deschene has been hired into a position that should have real responsibility commensurate with the salary he is being given. He has had public trust placed in him. The worst you could have done to fuck things up is to maybe wear the wrong golf pants.
posted by Killick at 8:28 AM on April 5, 2011 [6 favorites]


According to court records Brian J. Deschane still owes Dane County, WI Circuit Court $607.00 on his second drunk driving conviction.
posted by greasy_skillet at 8:28 AM on April 5, 2011 [10 favorites]


The Card Cheat: I just can't get over the U.S. these days. It used to be the envy of the world, but now it's like a flu other countries catch.

This particular strain of influenza seems to be more rampant in other countries with less healthy journalism systems and reliable courts. This is more like a flu we thought we were now immune to, only to find we're infected, and worse than before.
posted by filthy light thief at 8:29 AM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


I wonder how he'll get to work. 2 DUI convictions in Illinois gets you a mandatory prison stay and pretty much zero chance of getting a license for years.

I bet his dad will drive him.
posted by octobersurprise at 8:29 AM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


Apathy, laziness or just plain exhaustion resulting in failure to use the constitutional tools given you does not earn you a victim badge.

Nor does it mean you deserve to be fucked over. Even terrible people deserve a good government.
posted by mrgoat at 8:29 AM on April 5, 2011 [9 favorites]


It's days like this where I love Wisconsin's CCAP Circuit Court public records. Deschane has problems paying his Homeowners Association fees and a foreclosure has been attempted on him at least once (in 2006).

It looks like his first DUI didn't happen in Wisconsin, or at least it's not listed.
posted by drezdn at 8:31 AM on April 5, 2011


Which is not to say that they're terrible people, or that the people who voted for Walker are terrible. Just that everyone deserves better than this asshat.
posted by mrgoat at 8:31 AM on April 5, 2011


Who hasn't gotten a job via a social or blood connection.

There is a difference between networking to get a job I'm qualified for, and having my daddy pay a bunch of money "networking" to get a job I'm not qualified for.
posted by muddgirl at 8:32 AM on April 5, 2011 [11 favorites]


According to court records Brian J. Deschane still owes Dane County, WI Circuit Court $607.00 on his second drunk driving conviction.

Well hell with his new job he can pay that fine AND still have money to party all with one paycheck!
posted by Max Power at 8:34 AM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


I think you're all being unfair to Brian Deschane who clearly couldn't get the college education he needed to avoid these failures in life because Affirmative Action forced a black guy to get the advantages he never did.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 8:34 AM on April 5, 2011 [15 favorites]


to get a job I'm not qualified for.

The goal is to show Government is not competent.

Why not push the process along VS the normal stupidity which comes from any large organization?
posted by rough ashlar at 8:35 AM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


You see? They aren't even bothering to hide the corruption anymore. That's how little they care about what the public thinks of them.

Also, please, if you live in Wisconsin, vote today.

I connected those arrows on my ballot so fucking hard this morning...
posted by quin at 8:35 AM on April 5, 2011 [25 favorites]


So everyone who didn't vote for Walker|Kasich[my addition] deserves this?

Yes, because we didn't care enough to get out and get people voting, and educating people as to why voting for Walker/Kasich is a Horribly Bad Idea. So now we have to live with our lack of effort with entitled assholes tearing down our lives.

Everyone who was burnt out on the Democrats for one election and didn't vote deserve this?

Yes, and doubly-so for them. These are the people - mostly young - who sneered at the system and decided they would rather fuck off than vote, and then act all surprised and shocked how things turn out. What the hell did they expect? Unicorns and rainbows?
posted by Old'n'Busted at 8:36 AM on April 5, 2011 [10 favorites]


I bet his dad will drive him.

His dad's probably too busy ... making Wisconsin worse.

Somebody from his staff of veteran environmental attorneys will get to do it.
posted by notyou at 8:37 AM on April 5, 2011


Look, sometimes the best candidate for the job just happens to be the criminal son of a major campaign contributor.
posted by brain_drain at 8:38 AM on April 5, 2011 [39 favorites]


Damnit. I picked a bad month to quit drinking.
posted by schmod at 8:39 AM on April 5, 2011 [3 favorites]


How is anyone a victim when they have the constitutional right to choose who leads them?

Because those chosen people have openly and obviously conspired to deprive them of that right, while continuing to perpetuate the myth that everybody has one vote, every vote counts, and people get what they deserve. They do not, not anymore. People get what they are given; money gets what it buys.
posted by penduluum at 8:40 AM on April 5, 2011 [3 favorites]


Old'n'Busted: "If Walker handed the job over to someone 35-ish with a modicum of experience, I doubt anyone would be bitching about it very much, no matter who his daddy was."

Are you kidding? The Boston Herald complains when Deval Patrick's fourth cousin gets a job picking up trash for $35K a year.
posted by mkb at 8:40 AM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


The goal is to show Government is not competent.
In fact, I believe this is absolutely the goal.

I have come to believe we are in the middle of an organized, directed effort to so utterly break government on all levels to such a point that there will be no other option than to turn-over almost everything to the private sector. I'm not convinced the shenanigans that upended the economy weren't in some way connected, either. It's just all too convenient...crash the economy, force governments to cut deeply, especially the social services that the right so utterly despise.
Where'd I put my foil hat....
posted by Thorzdad at 8:40 AM on April 5, 2011 [38 favorites]


The goal is to show Government is not competent.
Exactly. This kills two birds with one stone. On the one hand, it pays off a crony. On the other hand, it ensures that environmental regulation in Wisconsin will be incompetently administered, and that will be cited as evidence that government regulation doesn't work and should be done away with. Corruption serves both their short-term and their long-term agenda.

And that's a big difference between this and the golf club example. The people who own the golf course have a vested interest in having the golf course function smoothly. These people want to do away with the thing they're running, so they have a vested interest in having it function poorly.
posted by craichead at 8:40 AM on April 5, 2011 [27 favorites]


a 20-something college drop-out with two drunk driving convictions [is now] the new man in charge of environmental regulations in Wisconsin

I'm sure he'll do a heck of a job.
posted by The Bellman at 8:40 AM on April 5, 2011 [5 favorites]


Who hasn't gotten a job via a social or blood connection.

There's also a big difference between a government job and one at a private business. Old'n'Busted's dad can hire whoever he wants to work his shop, because he owns the store. Government jobs are paid for by the people and are not a favor to be handed out, but rather a privilege to be granted in a fair and impartial manner to the most qualified applicant. Somehow I suspect that the state of Wisconsin has someone more qualified than Brian Deschane with experience in the field of environmental regulation and managing dozens of people who is willing to take a $81.5K salary with state benefits. That's who the job should have gone to.
posted by zachlipton at 8:41 AM on April 5, 2011 [16 favorites]



Nor does it mean you deserve to be fucked over. Even terrible people deserve a good government.


Going to have to disagree sharply with this one - in any democracy, you get the government you deserve. If you are apathetic, disorganized, unconcerned, willing to believe the easy answers and the cheap ways out? Yes. You deserve the government that is elected. This wasn't a coup. This is not a junta.
posted by jivadravya at 8:42 AM on April 5, 2011 [8 favorites]


If the voters of that state are willing to sit by, be passive, accept What Is, then they have what they both want and deserve. Don't Mourn For Me, Boys--Organize (Joe Hill)
posted by Postroad at 8:43 AM on April 5, 2011


Government jobs are paid for by the people and are not a favor to be handed out, but rather a privilege to be granted in a fair and impartial manner to the most qualified applicant.

I don't know, my mom got me a job at a federal government agency and she was just an administrative assistant-- nepotism was pretty common there in general.
posted by empath at 8:43 AM on April 5, 2011


in any democracy, you get the government you deserve.

Good thing this old saw is wrong as the US of A is a Republic.
posted by rough ashlar at 8:43 AM on April 5, 2011


Shit like what Scott Walker did has gone on forever, and will go on forever.

Patronage jobs are as old as politics but what I was most outraged about was that Walker wasn't satisfied with the political appointee jobs that he already controlled he created 37 new ones out of existing civil service jobs.
posted by Bonzai at 8:44 AM on April 5, 2011 [6 favorites]


The goal is to show Government is not competent.

yes, but wait until people find out the private sector isn't competent, either
posted by pyramid termite at 8:45 AM on April 5, 2011 [13 favorites]


There is a difference between networking to get a job I'm qualified for, and having my daddy pay a bunch of money "networking" to get a job I'm not qualified for.

Maybe in the private sector, but not in the public. I say the same thing to everyone who wants to get a job with some form of public agency: "Write the check."
posted by jsavimbi at 8:46 AM on April 5, 2011



Good thing this old saw is wrong as the US of A is a Republic.


The U.S. is a Federal Constitutional Republic. What are you getting at?
posted by jivadravya at 8:47 AM on April 5, 2011


And then there's the recent fallout here in Massachusetts regarding the widespread political patronage (i.e. cronyism and nepotism) at the State Probation Department.
posted by ericb at 8:48 AM on April 5, 2011


Future presidential material.

Definitely. He seems like the kind of guy people want to have a beer six beers and eight shots with.
posted by octobersurprise at 8:49 AM on April 5, 2011 [9 favorites]


The teahadists want to take back thier country. You know, the one they had in 1828.

Yay. I've always wanted to live in Gangs of New York.
posted by thsmchnekllsfascists at 8:50 AM on April 5, 2011 [4 favorites]


Because those chosen people have openly and obviously conspired to deprive them of that right, while continuing to perpetuate the myth that everybody has one vote, every vote counts, and people get what they deserve. They do not, not anymore. People get what they are given; money gets what it buys.

All of these arguments and any other sour grapes from people whose candidates did not win still comes down the same argument: the "middle class" or whatever bloc of people you think hae the exact same opinions as you and are so stupid as to be duped into selling themselves into slavery did not organize and use the democratic process to control their own government. Or perhaps just maybe not everyone thinks like you do. I certainly wish Walker would take a long walk off a short pier but I am not so arrogant as to assume that I speak for "THE MIDDLE CLASS".
posted by spicynuts at 8:56 AM on April 5, 2011


I don't know, my mom got me a job at a federal government agency and she was just an administrative assistant-- nepotism was pretty common there in general.

Same story here in Canada--it's actually very much against the rules, but it happens all the time. It goes so far as to actually hold a competition process for jobs where they have already made a decision, so a lot of money is wasted just for appearance sake.
posted by Hoopo at 8:59 AM on April 5, 2011


Government jobs are paid for by the people and are not a favor to be handed out, but rather a privilege to be granted in a fair and impartial manner to the most qualified applicant.

Yes, the folks at the RMV desk, the cops, the firefighters, the meter readers and the bus drivers should all be afforded the opportunity to apply and compete for a publicly-funded position in an open and fair manner. I have no problem with that, however, given how the mechanics actually operate, your statement is very naive right from the start. Altruistic yet naive.

However, those positions that are high enough in the food chain to actually formulate and execute policy based on the directives given to them by the executive leadership should be appointed by the current leadership and not be career civil servants or holdovers from past administrations. Clean-slate government for the leadership.

Unfortunately, in Wisconsin's case, the executive opted to appoint a daddy's boy with a drinking problem in their effort to undermine our democracy. Short of calling for general social unrest, I say that's grounds enough for dismissal.
posted by jsavimbi at 9:03 AM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


I 'm really not seeing the scandal here . When I
was fourteen , my dad was friends with the local
golf pro and a friendly word or two got me a
summer job on the driving range .

Do not confuse your socially insignificant private summer job with a government appointment to a senior managerial position. These are in no way the same thing. For one, you don't need any experience to competently carry some dude's bag for him. And for another, we have always held government up to higher standards of fairness and equality. If you can't see the scandal you are not looking hard enough.
posted by londonmark at 9:05 AM on April 5, 2011 [4 favorites]


Going to have to disagree sharply with this one - in any democracy, you get the government you deserve. If you are apathetic, disorganized, unconcerned, willing to believe the easy answers and the cheap ways out? Yes. You deserve the government that is elected. This wasn't a coup. This is not a junta.

So everything's as it should be in Wisconsin - why are we even having this discussion? Even the people who did vote against Walker deserve what they got - they didn't what, vote hard enough? I think you're confusing "deserve" with "deal with the consequences".

I think everyone everywhere, fundamentally deserves a functional, non-corrupt government. Sure, you don't always get it, but I think you still deserve it.
posted by mrgoat at 9:09 AM on April 5, 2011 [13 favorites]


I 'm really not seeing the scandal here . When I was fourteen , my dad was friends with the local golf pro and a friendly word or two got me a summer job on the driving range.
Do not confuse your socially insignificant private summer job with a government appointment to a senior managerial position.

Man, if you can equate a $80,000 salaried position to your summer job, that must have been on kickass golf course.

The worst you could have done to fuck things up is to maybe wear the wrong golf pants.

FFS, people. Re-adjust your sarcasmeters. Go watch Caddyshack or Happy Madison or something.
posted by maryr at 9:11 AM on April 5, 2011 [31 favorites]


Everyone who was burnt out on the Democrats for one election and didn't vote deserve this?

It's not about deserve (most people don't get what they "deserve", whatever that even means), but yes, this is the consequence of not participating in the political process.

Government plays a huge role in our lives, and yet when people are asked to spend a few hours to go and vote (not even campaigning or fund-raising!) for the people who will run their government for the next few years, they give some whiny bullshit excuses about being "burnt out".
Like, whoa brah, that's like, a real bummer and all. There's things that are part of being an adult that you just have to do as part of living life, I don't much like going to the dentist or even properly brushing my teeth, I still do it. What would you say if I told you that I was "burnt out" on paying my bills or going in to work?

Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard.
H. L. Mencken
posted by atrazine at 9:11 AM on April 5, 2011 [6 favorites]


Or perhaps just maybe not everyone thinks like you do.

True. And I don't and haven't claimed to speak for anybody but myself. But I happen to think that the minority doesn't deserve to get ignored or attacked merely by virtue of being the minority. The government is, ideally, the government of everybody, not just the people that voted for them. To act otherwise is gang mentality.

But! Let's set that aside as not being the main thrust of the argument. Because even all that only applies when the process actually WORKS. When organizing and working hard to vote in people who represent your own ideas and interests is actually POSSIBLE. What I'm saying is: that process has disintegrated. Organization and hard work are absolutely meaningless in the face of the huge amounts of money that are changing hands. My problem isn't with the other side -- if I believed that people I disagreed with politically were getting their people elected because they just worked harder and tried more, then, well, good game. It's a fair cop. But the people I disagree with politically aren't getting their interests protected either. Money is manipulating the people I disagree with politically into thinking that it's on their side. Money, purely money, is getting its interests protected.

And EVEN THEN I could believe that "top 1% of the population sorted by personal wealth" is a valid political alignment whose views I have to respect, IF they were following the rules of the game. If they were winning because they were organizing and working harder. They're not. They're winning by pure graft, and then enshrining that graft in law so as to perpetuate their power, and if you think that constitutes reasonable activity under the generally-understood principles of democratic government, then I guess we might just have to agree to disagree.
posted by penduluum at 9:12 AM on April 5, 2011 [13 favorites]


There are 5.6 million people in Wisconsin. There are 3.5 million registered voters (PDF). There were 4.3 million people of voting age in WI in 2010 (PDF). About 2.2 million voted, and only 1.1 million of them voted for Walker.

So, only 32% of registered voters voted for Walker, and only 20% of the entire state population. 80% of the state did not vote for him and does not deserve him. Can we put that to rest now?
posted by desjardins at 9:14 AM on April 5, 2011 [7 favorites]


> "With Liberty and Justice to all who can afford it."

The full plegde is:

"I pledge allegiance to the flag
of the United States of America
and to the corporations
for which it stands"

"One nation, under greed
with payoffs and kickbacks
for some"
posted by mmrtnt at 9:16 AM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


> Man, if you can equate a $80,000 salaried position to your summer job, that must have been on kickass golf course.

I should have mentioned that the golf course in question had a clubhouse which served HAMBURGERS.
posted by The Card Cheat at 9:16 AM on April 5, 2011 [37 favorites]


So, only 32% of registered voters voted for Walker, and only 20% of the entire state population. 80% of the state did not vote for him and does not deserve him. Can we put that to rest now?

Well, that's not how the system works, there are no percentages that doesn't deserve him. He's the Governor of the whole state, not just 20%. I would ask what the hell happened up there to get this jackass in office, but the country reelected George Bush Jr, so...Yeah.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:20 AM on April 5, 2011


So, only 32% of registered voters voted for Walker, and only 20% of the entire state population. 80% of the state did not vote for him and does not deserve him. Can we put that to rest now?

Okay, but if you were a registered and able voter and you did not vote? Frustrating as it is, in some way... you kinda deserve him.
posted by kingbenny at 9:21 AM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


you know, i thought this was kind of backward, what with Rick Scott showing the way to really cutting-edge graft by just legalizing it and doing it openly. But the novelty here is the twofer: Walker gets to reward a large-scale contributor (at no expense to himself or his campaign, thank fuck you very much, WI citizens!), and in the bargain, he gets to demonstrate that government bureaucracies are corrupt cesspools of incompetence and influence peddling.

This is reality-construction at its ... finest.
posted by lodurr at 9:23 AM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


I would ask what the hell happened up there to get this jackass in office, but the country reelected George Bush Jr, so...Yeah.

Well.... maybe. Things still look a bit hinky as far as the Ohio results of the 2004 election.
posted by hippybear at 9:23 AM on April 5, 2011


Okay, but if you were a registered and able voter and you did not vote? Frustrating as it is, in some way... you kinda deserve him.

I have a certain amount of sympathy for this view. Sometimes, you have to vote simply to keep the other idiot out of office, and not to get your idiot in.
posted by Thorzdad at 9:24 AM on April 5, 2011 [3 favorites]


yes, but wait until people find out the private sector isn't competent, either

The difference is that there's generally a limit to how incompetent an organization can be in the private sector. If you pack the whole company with morons who honestly can't do their jobs, eventually the competition eats your lunch. Which is why we don't really care too much if the guy running the local drugstore hires his son as the night manager; the worst-case scenario there is that the place will go out of business.

But when you're dealing with the public sector there's a fairly obvious lack of competition issue. The government doesn't tolerate a lot of competition with itself. And incompetence, when it can worm its way out of the harsh light of the open market and into the soft underbelly of civil service or political appointments, has a tendency to breed and spread. Which is why it's so dangerous, and can't be tolerated when it's discovered.

That said, I don't have high hopes. Gov Walker just happens to be a lot less subtle than most with his methods. Eliminating cronyism and the spoils mentality (and its more familiar sisters, like bid-rigging and favor trading) is a difficult thing as it's almost more a cultural problem than anything else. You can create Internal Affairs enforcers and create empowered Inspectors General to try and clean things up, but I'm skeptical how effective they really are, given the myriad ways that corruption can manifest itself, and how subtle it can be in practice. (More than once I've seen a bid process that I knew was almost certainly wired, and it's got a sort of kabuki dance aspect to it; all the parties go through the motions but you can tell somehow that they know it's a ritual, and therein lies the corruption — but you can't prosecute that.) The solution is, frankly, ideology. The most effective and corruption-free public offices I've interacted with are the ones staffed by people who obviously care about the job they're doing (the worst are universally the ones filled with time-servers in it for the pension), but that's a difficult thing to hire for. It's subjective, and the second you allow room for subjectivity in hiring you also open the door to favoritism and corruption.

I don't have any good solutions except that there is a distinct trickle-down effect from the head of an office or agency, so that in one fell swoop the Governor has, or will soon, damage the entire organization Deschane is in charge of for an employee-generation or more.
posted by Kadin2048 at 9:26 AM on April 5, 2011 [3 favorites]


This is just one more piece in the obvious truth that so many refuse to see. Look at all the things Scott Walker is doing. All the things Rick Scott is doing. All the proposals from freshman Republican congresspeople to privatize everything.

This is what a kleptocracy looks like. Nobody deserves this. Justifying these things in any way will just lead to more of the same old shit.
posted by Benny Andajetz at 9:27 AM on April 5, 2011 [30 favorites]


I say the same thing to everyone who wants to get a job with some form of public agency: "Write the check."

Why would you lie and/or give people completely wrong information?
posted by rtha at 9:27 AM on April 5, 2011


Apathy, laziness or just plain exhaustion resulting in failure to use the constitutional tools given you does not earn you a victim badge.

One of the "Tools" I'm supposed to have access to is the Grand Jury and the courts.

I can get that if the DA or Judge allows me to - post 1940's. It was "changed" when some corrupt Judges got True Billed in New York.

Back in the 1920's the idea of "you had to have standing" became the filter to access the court. Now *I* have to show *I* have been harmed. And, here's the fun part - if the Government goes ahead and wants to play 'wack a mole' with me, then I have "standing" until the Government decides to drop the case - thus the injustice to me can't be used to declare the law unconstitutional.

So feel free to print out "failure to use the constitutional tools" and fold the paper 'till it is all sharp corners then place that someplace where the sun doesn't even shine on Dick Bacon. Because, by "process" and not "law" tools have been taken away.
posted by rough ashlar at 9:27 AM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


This free market competition concept that makes the private sector better, you realise that basically goes away when cronyism and kickbacks enter the situation, right? And I say "goes away", but really such a thing as a free market has never existed ever.
posted by Artw at 9:29 AM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


I'm having trouble telling which defenses of nepotism are sarcasm.
posted by klangklangston at 9:32 AM on April 5, 2011 [14 favorites]


Even if you DID vote for Walker, he did not run on a campaign of union-busting and patronage. You may have reasonably expected these things, or expected him to lie, but it's not as if he explicitly warned you.
posted by desjardins at 9:32 AM on April 5, 2011 [9 favorites]


I'm having trouble telling which defenses of nepotism are sarcasm.

Look at the URL.

If it says "FreeRepublic" and the defense is of a Republican - its not sarcasm.
If it says "MetaFilter" and the defense is of a Democrat - its not sarcasm.
posted by rough ashlar at 9:33 AM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


80% of the state did not vote for him and does not deserve him.

No. 4.3 Million people of voting age, with 2.2 million voting, means that 2.1 didn't vote at all, and 1.1 did vote for Walker.

Therefore, 74% chose either to explicitly vote for Walker, or refused to vote for an alternate.

Wisconsin deserves this. As does pretty much this whole country. If you don't vote, you are implicitly voting for the candidate who wins, because you refused to employ your vote against him. Don't like the results? Next time, if there is a next time, actually go vote.

But implying that the people of Wisconsin should be held blameless? 3.2 million of them explicitly or implicitly supported his election as governor.

I wonder how many of those protesters voted?
posted by eriko at 9:36 AM on April 5, 2011


Why would you lie and/or give people completely wrong information?

In Massachusetts, advising someone to "write the check" is very good and pertinent advise. If they're friends, I tell them to "write the check now."
posted by jsavimbi at 9:41 AM on April 5, 2011


But seriously, I'm surprised that anyone is surprised by this. Isn't this how it's supposed to work? You pay money and you get rewards?

Just ask Obama's campaign staff. Axelrod, Plouffe, and Gibbs were all senior campaign staff that landed senior jobs in the white house.

But you know, you can't run a campaign without knowing a thing about policy or how to get shit done. Patronage isn't ideal, but it isn't necessarily as evil as giving 27 year old drunks jobs because their daddy gave you money. Most campaign operate with the expectation of a little patronage, but not this egregiously awful.
posted by munchingzombie at 9:41 AM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


It's one thing to say that the electorate deserves the governor they implicitly voted for.

It's another thing entirely to say they deserve any political representative that plays fast and loose with the laws or ignores the laws completely.

The governor is still an employee of the people. "Suck it up, buttercup" is not an appropriate response.
posted by Benny Andajetz at 9:43 AM on April 5, 2011 [7 favorites]


"Government plays a huge role in our lives, and yet when people are asked to spend a few hours to go and vote (not even campaigning or fund-raising!) for the people who will run their government for the next few years, they give some whiny bullshit excuses about being "burnt out"."
Posted by Atrazine

Unfortunately, here in the UK, there is just the illusion of choice. I agree with posters upthread, this is all part of making the state look bad to enable its continued dismantling. The same applies to the UK: Labour created innefficient beurecracies, the "nanny state", the "surveillance society" and so on, to make people hate the state. so now the tories come along and dismatle it, and everyone says "thank fuck, no more dole scroungers" etc.
posted by marienbad at 9:43 AM on April 5, 2011


they deserve any political representative that plays fast and loose with the laws or ignores the laws completely.

If this was in California - the citizens could take their complaints to the local Grand Jury and if true-billed the madness could at least go on trial.

Good luck trying to get what's going on in Wisconsin past PGM JB Van Hollen.
posted by rough ashlar at 9:45 AM on April 5, 2011


In Massachusetts, advising someone to "write the check" is very good and pertinent advise. If they're friends, I tell them to "write the check now."

I grew up in Boston, and am not unfamiliar with how its politics work. Your "advice," sound though you may think it based on your experience, is wrong or a lie when broad-brushed the way you have here. Or do you have actual figures to cite that show that every person who applies for a civil service job anywhere will only get that job if they write a check? And in what amount? And to whom?

(My anecdata: I know a lot of people where I live who work or have worked for the city, and none of them had to "write a check" to get their jobs.)
posted by rtha at 9:51 AM on April 5, 2011


I'm having trouble telling which defenses of nepotism are sarcasm.

I honestly think nepotism is fine in a lot of cases -- small businesses, skilled labor, that kind of thing. There's an advantage to having entire families who are experts in some trade working together.

Not so good for big corporations and government, though.
posted by empath at 9:54 AM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


The difference is that there's generally a limit to how incompetent an organization can be in the private sector.

This bit of folk common sense is a very pre-Too Big To Fail mindset. It's a brave new world of across-the-board, universal failure we're entering into now. It's going to be a great century.
posted by Space Coyote at 9:56 AM on April 5, 2011 [13 favorites]


Unfortunately, here in the UK, there is just the illusion of choice. I agree with posters upthread, this is all part of making the state look bad to enable its continued dismantling. The same applies to the UK: Labour created innefficient beurecracies, the "nanny state", the "surveillance society" and so on, to make people hate the state. so now the tories come along and dismatle it, and everyone says "thank fuck, no more dole scroungers" etc.
posted by marienbad at 9:43 AM on April 5 [+] Favorite removed! [!]


I think the situation in the UK is quite different. The only comparable process has been much more drawn out much less successful. The imposition of increased bureaucracy cost on the NHS during the 1980s may have been used against it, but recent attempts to "restructure" the NHS have generated a lot of opposition.

(That said, if the 18th Baronet of Ballentaylor is trying to discredit the Ministry of Finance through incompetency, he's doing a solid job of it.)
posted by Jehan at 9:58 AM on April 5, 2011


The difference is that there's generally a limit to how incompetent an organization can be in the private sector.

Psst. There's no limit to how incompetent an organization can be in the private sector.
posted by The World Famous at 9:59 AM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


I suspect people who think there is of never having had a proper job.
posted by Artw at 10:01 AM on April 5, 2011 [5 favorites]


I suspect people who think there is [have] never having had a proper job.

Or watched the news. Or heard of Wall Street.
posted by The World Famous at 10:03 AM on April 5, 2011


Psst. There's no limit to how incompetent an organization can be in the private sector.

Especially if they're riding off of VC money.
posted by empath at 10:06 AM on April 5, 2011


I feel that Wisconsin is getting exactly what they fucking deserve for electing this guy. Just like Ohio is getting the rogering we deserve.

I guess Wisconsin's natural resources are going to get what they deserve too. When the trees, lakes and ponds came out for Walker they were crusing for a brusing.

The "I'm so glad everyone is fucked up by the GOP" attitude is killing America.
posted by Ironmouth at 10:08 AM on April 5, 2011 [6 favorites]


Especially if they're riding off of VC money.

The surest way to success in the private sector is worming your way into a situation where people are obligated to keep pumping money into you, no matter how awful and incompetent you are. And make sure that when it all goes tits up you get to keep the money whilst someone else pays to clean up the mess.
posted by Artw at 10:11 AM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


jsavimbi: "Maybe in the private sector, but not in the public. I say the same thing to everyone who wants to get a job with some form of public agency: "Write the check.""

As someone who works in the government, who got a job based solely on merit, without writing any checks or having any relatives around here, I deeply resent this kind of thing. One of the joys of working in the federal government is that the rules apply equally to everyone.

Now, when I worked in the private sector, I don't think there was a job paying more than minimum wage that I ever got without knowing someone.
posted by QIbHom at 10:15 AM on April 5, 2011 [4 favorites]


Eventually the state will wither away...
posted by Artw at 10:15 AM on April 5, 2011


The difference is that there's generally a limit to how incompetent an organization can be in the private sector.

yes, after they've reached the point of bankruptcy and total failure, that's pretty much it

If you pack the whole company with morons who honestly can't do their jobs, eventually the competition eats your lunch.

unless they're packed with morons who honestly can't do their jobs, then it's pretty much dumb luck who fails first

and socially, our society is excelling at the production of morons who honestly can't do their jobs
posted by pyramid termite at 10:15 AM on April 5, 2011 [3 favorites]


If Walker handed the job over to someone 35-ish with a modicum of experience, I doubt anyone would be bitching about it very much, no matter who his daddy was.

Um... yeah? That's pretty much the point, isn't it. If Walker had given the job to someone qualified and considered something besides cronyism... then people wouldn't be complaining about him giving the job to someone unqualified as a favor for a bud.

I'm not really sure what "argument" you're trying to make, but trying to minimize outrage over something by saying that people wouldn't be outraged about it if it was the complete opposite situation doesn't really work. That's like saying, "Jeez, why are you so mad that I punched you in the face? I mean, you wouldn't be acting like this if I hadn't punched you in the face!"
posted by Saxon Kane at 10:16 AM on April 5, 2011 [12 favorites]


Well, at least I made it to Tuesday before asking myself what the hell I was thinking by going to law school. It's a good week.
posted by Capt. Renault at 10:17 AM on April 5, 2011 [3 favorites]


Alright then, how is the rest of Wisconsin reacting to this? Has this been used successfully to swing support away from Walker and his group?

I can be as outraged as I want to be over the river, so to speak, but it is Wisconsin that decides here and I am curious to know what Wisconsin or at least the segments are thinking.
posted by jadepearl at 10:17 AM on April 5, 2011


The difference is that there's generally a limit to how incompetent an organization can be in the private sector.

yes, after they've reached the point of bankruptcy and total failure, that's pretty much it.


Ahem.

Exhibit A for the opposition: Wall Street.
posted by Saxon Kane at 10:17 AM on April 5, 2011 [8 favorites]


so now the tories come along and dismatle it, and everyone says "thank fuck, no more dole scroungers fuck me, I'm on the dole... oh wait, there IS no more dole!!!"

Fixed that for you.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 10:19 AM on April 5, 2011


The "I'm so glad everyone is fucked up by the GOP" attitude is killing America.

I'm not glad everything is fucked up by the GOP, but there's some serious questions that need to be asked and answered about how and why Walker and the GOP are still getting elected. There are people who are routing for them, for their BS and that needs to be changed.

Is WI getting what it deserves? That's probably the wrong question to be asking and be concerned with. Walker's the Governor, the state and the various ways its citizens lean need to deal with that. I wishing for a righteous political beatdown of him myself.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:20 AM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


saxon kane, you only think wall st has reached the point of bankruptcy and total failure

they're not even close to it yet

and you should be very scared of that
posted by pyramid termite at 10:21 AM on April 5, 2011


How is the election going?
posted by Jumpin Jack Flash at 10:22 AM on April 5, 2011


SPOILER ALERT: Walker is actually a secret radical-socialist troll and helps to usher in a new age of government social welfare programs in the major cities at the cost of the fly-over states' economies.
posted by fuq at 10:23 AM on April 5, 2011


Coming to the Entire Rest of America, November 2012.
posted by Artw at 10:24 AM on April 5, 2011 [3 favorites]


...there's some serious questions that need to be asked and answered about how and why Walker and the GOP are still getting elected.

Never underestimate the power that big, crunchy "cut taxes" carrot has over the electorate.
Now, add to that the potentiating effect of talk radio and its decades-long orgy of anti-liberal demagoguery.

I'm honestly not too surprised we find ourselves in this situation. Frankly, I think things are going to get a whole lot worse yet. 2012 ain't going to be pretty, no matter how bad the conservatives make things before then.
posted by Thorzdad at 10:25 AM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


Yes, cronyism exists everywhere, but rarely do you promote a complete fool into a position of authority. Normally idiots like Deschane end up getting a cushy job with some made-up title like "Youth Outreach Director" or "Advertising Coordinator" in a sane administration. As noted upthread, this is basically Walker pissing on the whole concept of environmental regulations.
posted by benzenedream at 10:28 AM on April 5, 2011 [6 favorites]


This is what a kleptocracy looks like. Nobody deserves this.

For months before the election I was hearing internet leftists ranting about how the system was so hopeless that the only thing to do was to let the Republicans run the country into the ground until the Revolution happens. And now the Republicans are doing exactly that, and there's an internet shitstorm of outrage. Seriously people, make up your goddamn minds!
posted by happyroach at 10:29 AM on April 5, 2011


It also converts 37 top agency attorneys, communications officials and legislative liaisons from civil service positions to jobs appointed by the governor. Meet Brian Deschane...


Scott Walker, Neofascist Wall Street minion acts exactly as expected, once again. This is what democracy looks like when it's highest offices are occupied by people who have no sense of history, no sense of ethics, no knowledge of literature or the arts, no respect for compassion or empathy, and think that working in government is like working for a financial firm where the more people you stab in the back and take credit for their work and the more ruthless you ware about it the more you get rewarded. No difference to this dim witted slob of clown who thinks he's channeling Ronald Reagan, but is too ignorant to try and understand fully his big hero. I've said this before and I'll say it again. Walker mistakes authoritarianism and narrow minded rigid ambition as a sign of strength, as do many on the extreme right/TP/GOP/Libertarian side of the political spectrum. For them, their own ignorance and inability to think with any depth is a sign they're superior human beings.

And you think this is weird, wait until Walker and the Fitzgerald's find a way to raise money to hire their own private security force via Blackwater/Xe, with the argument that they need one to run a government because the Police of Wisconsin aren't doing their bidding, strangle enough.

Walker's the sort of dangerous idiot who will inadvertently cause blood on the streets from his own stupidity and utter dearth of self-consciousness.

Recall.
posted by Skygazer at 10:32 AM on April 5, 2011 [3 favorites]


strangle strangely enough.




Talk about your Freudian slips. Yikes.
posted by Skygazer at 10:35 AM on April 5, 2011 [3 favorites]


there's generally a limit to how incompetent an organization can be in the private sector

I don't think this word means what you think it means. This is like saying Frito Lays is in the business of producing "naturally delicious" foodstuffs with "all natural ingredients".

They're not.

I've become very unsentimental about the functionality of our organizations compared with what their ostensible role is. A lot of people up thread get this too, but I wanted to make sure the point is clear: change will not come until we have an honest assessment of what's going on here.

Gov. Walker is not incompetent, you just don't understand his objectives.
posted by Reasonably Everything Happens at 10:39 AM on April 5, 2011 [3 favorites]


Card Cheat, the difference is that the golf club is not (we hope) funded by taxpayers. Maine's Gov. LePage is doing similar things here. They should be ashamed. and recalled.
posted by theora55 at 10:39 AM on April 5, 2011


Gov. Walker is not incompetent, you just don't understand his objectives.

I think both things are true.

His failure to pass the budget repair bill ? His failure to respond effectively to the protests ?

The guy has been a ham-handed amateur. That he's managed to accomplish as much as he has has more to do with the tons of work behind the scenes that groups like ALEC and lobbyists like the WMC and WBA have done for him. Anything he has done on his own is almost breathtakingly incompetent.

Still, he's an ideologue. A true believer. We are in a religious fight, here.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 10:49 AM on April 5, 2011 [4 favorites]


Btw, y'all went out and voted today, right?
posted by desjardins at 11:02 AM on April 5, 2011


Psst. There's no limit to how incompetent an organization can be in the private sector.

QFT.

It's sometimes strange to me that in one way this is actually a very mainstream and well-accepted view. Look no further than the Dilbert strips pasted up everywhere and the fact that Scott Adams (among others) has built a very successful career out of playing the jester who points this fact out repeatedly to our apparent general amusement.

But the strangeness begins when the "serious discussions" start. The rueful laughter at the weaknesses we all see in our workplaces suddenly becomes a forgotten realm of discourse and the idea that the private sector is a competitive meritocracy again reigns as the common wisdom.

Perhaps the laughter is stronger when it causes slippage along the fault lines between fronts of dissonance.
posted by weston at 11:07 AM on April 5, 2011 [4 favorites]


Man, I voted extra hard today!
posted by Mngo at 11:08 AM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


For months before the election I was hearing internet leftists ranting about how the system was so hopeless that the only thing to do was to let the Republicans run the country into the ground until the Revolution happens. And now the Republicans are doing exactly that, and there's an internet shitstorm of outrage. Seriously people, make up your goddamn minds!

It's one thing to observe that the Republicans (no matter how popular they might currently be) are setting up exactly the sort of dystopia that has time and time again been shown to spawn violent populist uprisings.

It's quite another to actually want it to get that far.


The somewhat interesting part is that the GOP has done this while stirring up its own increasingly-violent populist uprising, in spite of the fact that the mob is largely acting against its own interests. There are only a few historic parallels to that, and those are even less pretty.
posted by schmod at 11:08 AM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


Card Cheat, the difference is that the golf club is not (we hope) funded by taxpayers.

Not yet...
posted by the_artificer at 11:10 AM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


Still, he's an ideologue. A true believer. We are in a religious fight, here

Well first thing to do is take the issue out of the hands of the GOP, by re-framing normalizing and fixing the debate out of their myopic and unrealistic narrowly self-serving terms of aggression and propaganda .

When people are reduced to dealing with each other as taxpayers (numbers) or consumers (numbers and demographics) it limits the scope of what people are as individuals, and the relationships they can have with one another within the context of community and a democracy. It pits person against person, tax bracket against tax bracket, and makes one and all slaves to that one very very narrow POV.

Taxes are a part of life, they always have been and they always will be if there's to be a group of people responsible for the common goals and general enrichment of a society that provides.

We are is citizens with mutual goals for the common welfare. And with rights that depend upon those mutual goals and mutual respect and regard.

Tolerance was encoded into the deepest fibers of the founding documents of this country. It's' the very fabric of thought they were originated and composed upon.

Why should the scope of that relationship of tolerance be narrowed to what the GOP or Wall Street wants?

Especially when the GOP is a subsidiary/branch of Wall Street and the Big Banks and should change it's name to GOP Inc. (A fully owned entity of those people and organizations of the United States who make under a Billion dollars per annum and their Think tanks and media entities).
posted by Skygazer at 11:16 AM on April 5, 2011


80% of the state did not vote for him and does not deserve him. Can we put that to rest now?

What part of that 80% didn't vote because "There is no difference between the Republicans and the Democrats" and can I have their names so that I can go to their homes and kick each one of them in the ass?
posted by It's Never Lurgi at 11:16 AM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


There's no limit to how incompetent an organization can be in the private sectorhuman incompetence.

FTFY.
posted by daniel_charms at 11:27 AM on April 5, 2011


The standard of ethics in government should require that if the best person for the job is a close relative of a major campaign fundraiser, then you hire the second best person for the job.
posted by rocket88 at 11:27 AM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


Wait, what? I would assume that you should hire THE best person for the job, regardless of their family connections. Wouldn't that be the most ethical thing to do?
posted by maryr at 11:29 AM on April 5, 2011


Wait, what? I would assume that you should hire THE best person for the job, regardless of their family connections. Wouldn't that be the most ethical thing to do?

Yeah, but in a practical sense, it's unlikely and also a convenient excuse to hire the relative anyway.
posted by empath at 11:35 AM on April 5, 2011


I'm not glad everything is fucked up by the GOP, but there's some serious questions that need to be asked and answered about how and why Walker and the GOP are still getting elected. There are people who are routing for them, for their BS and that needs to be changed.


They are getting elected because more people are voting for them.

Which means dumbasses are sitting on their kiesters doing nothing on election day.
posted by Ironmouth at 11:35 AM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


So everybody in the world neatly lines up according to merit, and there's always one uniquely best-qualified person to fill every position? Whoa, it must be nice to live in such a neatly structured and tidy world.

Seriously, though, if one well-qualified candidate is a crony, that individual necessarily brings conflicting interests and loyalties to the job that weaken them as candidates. A crony is never the best person for the job, because their loyalties are to individuals within the system, rather than to the integrity of the system. So I would argue, there's no such thing as a best-qualified crony or nepotism hire. The fact of their personal connections compromises them, to some degree, over any other, equally skilled (but less likely compromised) candidate.

Something something "...Nation of laws not of men..."
posted by saulgoodman at 11:37 AM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


Gov. Walker is not incompetent, you just don't understand his objectives.

I understand his objectives fully well, and as seen from the lense of what a state government and a Governor are supposed to as encoded in the laws and the spirit that guides them and respect for those who fought for certain rights and Democratic features he is not only incompetent, he's reckless and dangerously (and I wish I was being hyperbolic here) deaf to opposing points of view.

He's torn that state into pieces. Wasted people's time, wasted the states money and generally created confusion and strife in areas that were doing perfectly fine. He reminds me in so many ways, and this is weird I know but hear me out, of a Maoist bureaucrat unthinkingly and slavishly obedient to following precisely and to the letter all elements of what the party HQ dictates. He is that inflexible and ideologically unquestioning.

To me it's just another sign that the GOP/TP and this Wall Street culture has so jumped the shark it's just about time for it to implode with rot and corruption from within...

In the meanwhile Walker? He's a two-bit bureaucrat in the provinces somewhere trying to get noticed and rewarded for his ruthlessness and adherence to the party dictates so he can move on to being a national player, and nothing is going to stop him even if that means...well it seems he's ready to bash heads if he has to...

And I'm sure he's working out that private state contract with Blackwater/Xe, right now and will announce shortly their pre-eminence as the official Governor's security force in the Capital. With rights supercedeing those of the all other police, except for the Staties of course.


Recall. Recall. Recall.
posted by Skygazer at 11:39 AM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


The standard of ethics in government should require that if the best person for the job is a close relative of a major campaign fundraiser, then you hire the second best person for the job.

something something appearance of impropriety something

I wish more government worked that way, actually. Like the failure of Thomas and Scalia to recuse themselves from cases in which they might appear to have a vested interest in the outcome. Whether they do or not, they should avoid having it look like their judgement is tainted.

Same for hiring. If you can't make it look convincing that you're NOT doing this out of cronyism, then pick someone else.
posted by hippybear at 11:44 AM on April 5, 2011


I wonder how he'll get to work.

Though you may not drive a great big Cadillac
Gangster whitewalls, TV antenna in the back
You may not have a car at all
But just remember brothers and sisters
You can still stand tall
Just be thankful for what you've got
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:45 AM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


schmod : The somewhat interesting part is that the GOP has done this while stirring up its own increasingly-violent populist uprising, in spite of the fact that the mob is largely acting against its own interests. There are only a few historic parallels to that, and those are even less pretty.

Aww fuck. I just had a really odd thought; I commented in an earlier thread that I felt like we watching those engaging in class warfare "seeing how far they can push them before something breaks.", and I just had a full-on conspiracy theorist idea pop into my head;

What if the whole point of this is to actually start a blood-in-the-streets series of riots or worse? Just before the 2012 elections? It'd be a bad thing to have happen on Obama's watch and certainly would taint his presidency...

But I'm going to stop with this train of thought, because down that path lies a deeply depressing form of madness and impotent rage.
posted by quin at 11:46 AM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


This is just one more piece in the obvious truth that so many refuse to see. Look at all the things Scott Walker is doing. All the things Rick Scott is doing. All the proposals from freshman Republican congresspeople to privatize everything.

Didn't they campaign on reducing government, reducing taxes, reducing 'waste'? What did people think that meant? If people are voting on first-principles (such as "I hate paying taxes"), what do they expect? These Tea Partiers / Republicans are transparent in their disdain for government, and government services. They've been running on a platform for literally years of "leaving only enough water in the tub to drown the government". Honestly, what do people expect? I have to look for the cite, but I remember seeing people protesting Walker's cuts, who had voted for him, even though he was pretty transparent about what he was going to do.

And yes - if you're one of the 68% of voters in Wisconsin that didn't mobilize, couldn't be bothered, and didn't vote for whatever reason, well, you're reaping what you sewed.
posted by jivadravya at 11:47 AM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


IN other news: The Walker administration has announced that it is seeking Former FEMA director Michael Brown to manage it's Office of Emergency Preparedness Department...
posted by Skygazer at 11:47 AM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


"Anyway, I'm not convinced that being twice convicted of drunk driving is going to bother anyone in Wisconsin,"

eh. I know a number of people with DWI convictions, most of them have multiple convictions. I'm guessing most people in WI know at least one person with a DWI. The drunk driving thing is probably the least problematic part of this story.
posted by MikeMc at 11:49 AM on April 5, 2011


Why does only the appearance of impropriety in hiring seem to matter to anyone anymore? I can't believe even the law now seems to take it for granted that there's no real substantial issue with these kinds of hiring practices, and that they are only bad insofar as they create appearances of some kind of corruption. Nepotism and cronyism in substance--not merely in appearance--are forms of corruption. It's not just the appearances we should be worrying about. That's supposed to be the job of the crooks, so how'd they manage to get us to do that heavy-lifting for them, helping construct new legal mechanisms for engaging in cronyism and nepotism that are harder to recognize?

Have we been led by degrees to abandon the basic social principle that nepotism and cronyism are inherently bad (partly for social justice reasons, and partly for reasons like those I alluded to up here)? It sure seems like it.
posted by saulgoodman at 11:55 AM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


What if the whole point of this is to actually start a blood-in-the-streets series of riots or worse? Just before the 2012 elections? It'd be a bad thing to have happen on Obama's watch and certainly would taint his presidency...

In Nine Inch Nails' Year Zero storyline, beginning during the Bush administration, a growing combination of environmental collapse, terrorist attacks, and military engagement lead to a convergence of events where a full-out theocratic state is established in the US in 2022.

It's not a pretty picture overall, but the more time passes between the release of that album and its accompanying "CD booklet on steroids" ARG material, the more its prescience kind of freaks me out.
posted by hippybear at 11:59 AM on April 5, 2011


Chester A. Arthur is spinning in his (secretly Canadian) grave.
posted by maryr at 12:00 PM on April 5, 2011 [4 favorites]


Why does only the appearance of impropriety in hiring seem to matter to anyone anymore?

Have we been led by degrees to abandon the basic social principle that nepotism and cronyism are inherently bad


Um... well, if you're responding to my comment above, I'd have to say that it is because, if you're avoiding all appearance of impropriety, then you're avoiding the actual impropriety.

I don't think anyone has argued that we should only pay attention to appearances and not actual trespasses. Have you seen evidence in the real world that people are avoiding appearances but engaging nonetheless in actual cronyism and nepotism?
posted by hippybear at 12:01 PM on April 5, 2011


Why does only the appearance of impropriety in hiring seem to matter to anyone anymore?
Because it avoids actually accusing anybody. This way, it's possible to weasel around and say "Of course, your crony isn't one of the problems. We're not accusing you of nepotism. It's just that it could look that way, and we have to be consistent and forbid it across the board, so that we can stop the actual bad hiring practices."
posted by Karmakaze at 12:04 PM on April 5, 2011


Why does only the appearance of impropriety in hiring seem to matter to anyone anymore?

Because if you are going to have a legal fight - best not to look like you did anything wrong.

Given the legal profession (and those from the legal profession who have become the people who write the basis for the laws) has acted to prevent citizens from going to court VIA the BS of standing and preventing citizens from going directly to Grand Juries - how exactly 'ya gonna get to have the legal fight?
posted by rough ashlar at 12:05 PM on April 5, 2011


I'm guessing most people in WI know at least one person with a DWI.

I know 4 for sure, and three of those people have more than one. The culture is such up here that it's not that big of a deal. I'm not saying it's right, but most people wouldn't lose their job over one or two of them unless they drove for a living. The thought that you would lose friends over it just seems weird to me.
posted by desjardins at 12:10 PM on April 5, 2011


Um... well, if you're responding to my comment above, I'd have to say that it is because, if you're avoiding all appearance of impropriety, then you're avoiding the actual impropriety.

I don't agree. It's definitely possible in practice to avoid all appearances of impropriety and still carry out improper behavior. Appearance =/= substance, and never the twain shall meet. I think defining the problem in terms of appearances has the effect of minimizing the importance of the substance of cronyism, and encouraging the attitude that as long as no one raises a stink, a crony hire is not really a serious problem. But in fact, cronyism is a problem whether there's an appearance of cronyism or not. Cronyism as a practice in itself--whether its apparent or not--is bad management practice that leads to all kinds of market inefficiencies. So from my point of view, I can't agree.
posted by saulgoodman at 12:15 PM on April 5, 2011




The DWIs (Driving Wisconsinated) only count if you're drinking something other than brandy.
posted by klangklangston at 12:19 PM on April 5, 2011


Appearance =/= substance, and never the twain shall meet.

If you really truly believe this as a hard and fast rule, then yes, we don't agree.
posted by hippybear at 12:20 PM on April 5, 2011


Aww fuck. I just had a really odd thought; I commented in an earlier thread that I felt like we watching those engaging in class warfare "seeing how far they can push them before something breaks.", and I just had a full-on conspiracy theorist idea pop into my head;

What if the whole point of this is to actually start a blood-in-the-streets series of riots or worse? Just before the 2012 elections? It'd be a bad thing to have happen on Obama's watch and certainly would taint his presidency...


It'd be hard to believe that they're not aware that they're pushing the people to the brink.

I honestly doubt there will be full-scale riots. I also think that the GOP is also hedging the same bet, given that their populist message is a boldfaced lie. Inciting the tea party to violence is a dangerous, dangerous tactic that could backfire easily on them.

Sadly, I'm a lot less hopeful that the Gabrielle Giffords shooting will be remembered as an isolated incident.
posted by schmod at 12:21 PM on April 5, 2011


"Anyway, I'm not convinced that being twice convicted of drunk driving is going to bother anyone in Wisconsin ... "

Brings to mind this guy: Bar-Owning GOP Montana State Representative Says Stricter DUI Laws Are ‘Destroying A Way Of Life’
" ... 'These DUI laws are not doing our small businesses in our state any good at all. They are destroying them. They are destroying a way of life that has been in Montana for years and years.'"
posted by ericb at 12:22 PM on April 5, 2011


Chester A. Arthur is spinning in his (secretly Canadian) grave.

I had never heard that before. Where's the long form birth certificate Chester A. Arthur?
posted by drezdn at 12:23 PM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


The thought that you would lose friends over it just seems weird to me.

The way I've lost friends because of DWI is why I think anyone claiming that it's "not a big deal" is an asshole.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 12:29 PM on April 5, 2011 [6 favorites]


they're pushing the people to the brink.

(The nexus of fiat money and the end of historically cheap energy will be far more "pushy" than someone in public office has been graftastic)

Thus far the 'path for change' is every few years via voting or get a recall that works.

Access to the Courts was meant to be another path to claim rights - Rights belong to those who will litigate for them - acts as a pressure relief and a way to show that "the system" is under the Rule of Law. A way for citizens to push back.

If "the system" seems to be fixed elections AND fixed elections are offered up as the path to change - sadly the ammunition box would be the next box used as pushback.
posted by rough ashlar at 12:32 PM on April 5, 2011


I live in Wisconsin and only know one person with a DWI. Sadly, it's my brother.
posted by drezdn at 12:33 PM on April 5, 2011


If you really truly believe this as a hard and fast rule, then yes, we don't agree.

Even a cursory survey of modern physics gives lie to the idea that appearances = reality. At best, appearances can be a useful pointer for the underlying reality, but there's really very little philosophical or empirical support for the idea that there's any necessary direct connection between appearances and reality. Ever, unfortunately.

The problem of the gap between appearances and reality are even more complicated in the domain of societies and culture, where outright deception and the subtler forms of perception management are so widespread they've literally become specialized trades.

But this topic quickly gets very deeply into fundamental philosophical problems in the field of epistemology and touches on Theory of Mind in cognitive development, and there's no point rehashing all the arguments here. I'm glad you have a position you're comfortable with, but the rest of the jury is still out on the subject, and judging from the literature, most of them are leaning the other way and have been since the time of Plato.
posted by saulgoodman at 12:44 PM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


The DWIs (Driving Wisconsinated) only count if you're drinking something other than brandy.

Bwahaha, now THAT is an in-joke, and you're not even from here.
posted by desjardins at 12:53 PM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


I have many a vaguely-leftish vaguely-political friend who didn't vote this time around because Obama failed to fix reality quickly enough. Being one of the few political and informed people in my circle, I know never to bring up politics because even inadvertently reminding people of their apathy or correcting naive opinions which anyone who picked up the paper once a week would not have, well thats a quick way to make things awkward and end the conversation. And usually its me - the one that's actually informed - that somehow winds up feeling guilty.

So as much as I love said people - its kind of hard for me to believe that they don't deserve what they inevitably get.
posted by tempythethird at 1:01 PM on April 5, 2011


Goodness. I thought we were talking about whether one should avoid doing things while in public office which appear, let alone actually ARE, nepotistic or cronyism, and suddenly I'm plunged into quantum physics and Theory of Mind?

I bet you cook an amazing plate of beans.
posted by hippybear at 1:03 PM on April 5, 2011 [3 favorites]


RECALL PLEASE
posted by angrycat at 1:05 PM on April 5, 2011


To the multiple calls for recall.

272 days to eligibility.

Let's see how todays vote goes. If there is a big turn-out for a spring election and Prosser loses big then maybe the GOP will start to get nervous and start backtracking.
posted by Bonzai at 1:13 PM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


Well, hippybear, like I said, it's definitely too big a subject for this discussion, and my philosophy minor might be getting me in trouble here, but my point is, it's not just the appearance that matters, because even when it goes completely undetected, cronyism is known to create substantive drags on an economy. We can at least agree on that much, I hope? If not, then my original point is correct: the substantive (as opposed to optical) economic problems that cronyism and nepotism foster aren't fully appreciated or well understood anymore (these problems were much more obvious, I think, during eras of protracted economic hardship like the Great Depression).
posted by saulgoodman at 1:13 PM on April 5, 2011


maybe the GOP will start to get nervous

"they" would be far more nervous with some ham sandwiches given to Grand Juries across the 70+ State Counties.
posted by rough ashlar at 1:18 PM on April 5, 2011


It's really not too big a subject for this discussion. It's all pretty straightforward, and you'll probably have to leave your philosophy minor aside.

Here goes: Is it cronyism or nepotism? Don't do it. Not good. Could it look to those close to the situation like it might be cronyism or nepotism? Don't do it. Not good. Could it look to those observing from a distance that it might be cronyism or nepotism? Don't do it. Not good.

The purpose behind avoiding even the appearance of impropriety isn't to somehow give actual impropriety a free pass. It's pretty much kindergarten-level social interaction stuff. Don't want to be seen as being a bad guy? Then don't do things which make you look like a bad guy.

All this other mumbo-jumbo is completely clouding the water.
posted by hippybear at 1:22 PM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


So we get to keep blaming everyone in Wisconsin for this, right? Because, hey, if he got elected they deserve it and if those cheesehead fucks cared there'd be at least a few of them raising a stink, right? So I guess the whole state is complicit.
posted by stet at 1:28 PM on April 5, 2011


And regarding DWIs in WI, when I was back home working as a truck driver in Madison, one of my co-workers told us a funny story about how he'd gotten pulled over the night before, blown for a DWI, and was let off because, you know, if you ticket a fucking truck driver for driving while legally intoxicated, it might fuck up his job.

Fucking scott walker is joining the ranks of such proud wisconsinites as Ed Gein, Jeffrey Dahmer, and Joe McCarthy.
posted by stet at 1:35 PM on April 5, 2011


Apparently I am also a little defensive. Sorry. Also, fuck scott walker
posted by stet at 1:37 PM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


So I guess the whole state is complicit.

If you dig 'bout the Internet you'll find people who claim that all of Japan is to blame for the 4 reactors going TU in Japan. Not the wave of water.....but the whole nation. Blaming some group for the action of a few is just the way some think. I'm guessing its inoperable brain tumors as to why.

The people claiming "you get what you deserve" are people who buy into the 2 party system "if only you'd gone with the other" thinking.
posted by rough ashlar at 1:40 PM on April 5, 2011


scott walker is joining the ranks of such proud wisconsinites as Ed Gein

No he's not. There is no musical about Scott Walker.
posted by rough ashlar at 1:42 PM on April 5, 2011


Don't want to be seen as being a bad guy? Then don't do things which make you look like a bad guy.

All this other mumbo-jumbo is completely clouding the water.


If I'm right and a lot of people don't really recognize anymore that cronyism isn't just a PR issue, then it's not. But I suspect that's how a lot of people view these issues now. You say "even the appearance" as if that were a higher standard of rule, but in fact, the appearance of impropriety threshold is a lower standard. If the strictest legal or social obligation is only to avoid the appearance of cronyism (or "even the appearance," as you put it), then that's all that we'll get: people modifying their behaviors to avoid the appearance of the behavior. That's a belief rooted partly in my own personal experience in seeing how things play out in practice in state government, not just in theory. The theoretical stuff was definitely distracting, but I still think the framing of the issue in terms of appearances is part of the problem.

If you're unconvinced, that's fine by me. But I still think most Americans just don't really get in a visceral way anymore how seriously socially and economic harmful widespread cronyism and nepotism are. There used to be a broader popular consensus on these issues, but now it's a thorny debate. That was what I intended my original point to be--I didn't mean to nit-pick your comment to death, and I'm sorry if that's how my responses have come off.
posted by saulgoodman at 1:46 PM on April 5, 2011


The people claiming "you get what you deserve" are people who buy into the 2 party system "if only you'd gone with the other" thinking.

...because that third party idea worked out so well last time.
posted by goethean at 1:46 PM on April 5, 2011


You have no idea the depths of depravity to which this administration might sink. Musical theater is a best case scenario.
posted by stet at 1:53 PM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


Caesar's wife must be above 0.08.
posted by tzikeh at 1:53 PM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


3rd party is not going to work in America until some viable form of IRV pervades enough states. Hell, here in MN we had a 3rd party Governor in the recent past and I still don't think it works well here. It dilutes the vote too much.
posted by edgeways at 1:54 PM on April 5, 2011


if you ticket a fucking truck driver for driving while legally intoxicated, it might fuck up his job.

My brother wouldn't get a job that required the CDL for driving because it actually halves the legal limit needed for a DWI (even when you're not working).
posted by drezdn at 1:55 PM on April 5, 2011


The people claiming "you get what you deserve" are people who buy into the 2 party system "if only you'd gone with the other" thinking.

So what're your thoughts? Do you honestly think that some unicorny 3 party or larger system is going to emplace itself into the American political system ... how exactly? Or what, not deal with the reality of the situation that it is, and somehow do what now?

Your relative incoherency on this matter is vexing.

For better or worse, we have a 2 party system. You may not like it, I certainly don't. However, that doesn't change the fact that it exists, for at least now, and into the foreseeable future. Either you work within the system, or you embrace revolution of some sort (violent or non-), or you embrace apathy. But wishing something to change and seeing that it doesn't, yet to keep on wishing, is literally the classic definition of insanity.
posted by jivadravya at 2:10 PM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


Seeing reports that Deschane has been re-assigned to the original 60kish position. Doesn't satisfy me, but *shruggity*.
posted by drezdn at 2:10 PM on April 5, 2011


Tweets say Assembly Dems have offered an amendment doing away with his position altogether
posted by edgeways at 2:12 PM on April 5, 2011


I didn't know we weren't hiring people with DUIs anymore.
posted by effugas at 2:12 PM on April 5, 2011


Seeing reports that Deschane has been re-assigned to the original 60kish position. Doesn't satisfy me, but *shruggity*

This is where the media has to do their job. Every time they get in front of the governor they need to say," Mr. Governor, please explain your rationale behind hiring Mr. Deschane. What qualifications make him uniquely qualified for serving the citizens of Wisconsin in that position? Who else did you consider? Please look into the camera, and speak slowly......"
posted by Benny Andajetz at 2:15 PM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


The people claiming "you get what you deserve" are people who buy into the 2 party system "if only you'd gone with the other" thinking.

You know, have at it. You know why there's no third party? Because very few people want it. We've had third and fourth parties before. 1836, 1844, 1848, 1860. The Whig party was even wiped out. At the beginning were the Federalists and the Democratic-Republicans. Then it was the Whigs and the Democrats and the Free Soil Party. Hell, in 1836 two different Whigs ran and split the vote. In 1828, there were only two candidates, both from the Democratic party. In 1832, the Anti-Masonic Party won 7 electoral votes. In 1856, there were the Know-Nothings. In 1860, 4 different candidates won electoral votes. In 1872, there were only Republican candidates. 1892 saw three candidates win electoral votes. TR split from the Republicans and ran as a Progressive in 1912, where there were 4 major candidates, of which 3 won electoral votes. Eugene V. Debs won 6% of the vote as a Socialist. In 1924, three candidates again won electoral votes. In 1948, again, three different candidates won electoral votes, with the lowest scoring candidate scoring 4 states. In 1968 three different parties ran and all carried states with the lowest-scoring candidate winning 5 states and 13.5% of the vote. In 1980, Anderson took 6.6% of the vote. In 1992 there were three major candidates, with the lowest-scoring taking a whopping 18.9% of the vote.

The view that somehow it is impossible to have a third party is bunk. The people who want it just want to change the electoral system to make it possible for them to win when they can't win the way the rules are now because they can't get the most votes. It is a pathetic excuse for splitting the Democratic party.

I was in an argument earlier today and looked at the id numbers for Americans for 2010. 42% of Americans were self-ID'd as conservative. Only 18% self-ID'd as liberals. We need to get smart and stop acting as if we don't have a hell of a lot of work to start convincing people that we are right. And we have to stick together.
posted by Ironmouth at 2:19 PM on April 5, 2011


42% of Americans were self-ID'd as conservative. Only 18% self-ID'd as liberals. We need to get smart and stop acting as if we don't have a hell of a lot of work to start convincing people that we are right. And we have to stick together.

Absolutely correct.

Incidentally, it's been my experience that most people are more liberal in their beliefs than they think they are.
posted by Benny Andajetz at 2:23 PM on April 5, 2011 [4 favorites]


Also, in 1996, a third party candidate got 8.6% of the vote.
posted by Ironmouth at 2:27 PM on April 5, 2011


drezdn: Seeing reports that Deschane has been re-assigned to the original 60kish position. Doesn't satisfy me, but *shruggity*.


Yup. That was quick.
posted by Bonzai at 2:42 PM on April 5, 2011


Wisconsin is currently having an election where every damn candidate is marked as non-partisan (unless you live in the 60th, 83rd, or 94th state assembly district (IIRC), in which case you're also voting in the primary for your state assembly person's replacement). These elections work via a non-instant runoff system where primaries select the top two candidates, who then face-off in the spring. Party affiliations are not marked on the ballot, which has been a challenge for organizing around this election - I encountered many voters who said, "Yes, we plan on voting Democratic," not realizing that this wouldn't be possible today.

Milwaukee had three socialist mayors. We've had one very high-profile Progressive governor and other successful third-party candidates. There's currently an independent in our state assembly.

Also, fuck you if you think I deserve Scott Walker. Fuck you if you think my grandmother, who worked hard her whole life and now depends on BadgerCare for her medical care, deserves Scott Walker. Fuck you if you think my father, who has been a hardworking city mechanic for over 25 years, deserves Scott Walker. Fuck you if you think people with developmental disabilities deserve Scott Walker. Fuck you if you think children deserve Scott Walker. Nobody deserves to have their government act like this.

(I held a vote in my living room just now to determine whether this comment was too fighty. You should've showed up.)
posted by yomimono at 2:50 PM on April 5, 2011 [26 favorites]


Party affiliations are not marked on the ballot, which has been a challenge for organizing around this election

Why are the party affiliations not listed? Is that not pertinent information?


(If the candidate is not proud and forthcoming about their party, I'm not voting for them. The only candidates I've ever seen hide their party have been weaselly Republicans.)
posted by Benny Andajetz at 3:12 PM on April 5, 2011


Not all state elections have party affiliations listed on the ballots. In WA, there are a lot of races which are listed as "non-partisan" despite there being clearly partisan candidates running for the office.

Sometimes voting requires a lot of research.
posted by hippybear at 3:19 PM on April 5, 2011



If it's any indication, my wife returned from our polling place at 4pm and they were reporting that over 60% of the registered voters had been in already.

I did notice that the ballots were not marked with either party affiliation or incumbency status. This is a good thing, I think. Of course, people are just gonna vote for the top one, or the bottom one, or the one with the name they like.

Also, didn't WI used to have party voting ? You just marked a box and everyone from that party got your vote ? do they still do that ?
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 3:36 PM on April 5, 2011


Wisconsin is currently having an election where every damn candidate is marked as non-partisan (unless you live in the 60th, 83rd, or 94th state assembly district (IIRC), in which case you're also voting in the primary for your state assembly person's replacement). These elections work via a non-instant runoff system where primaries select the top two candidates, who then face-off in the spring. Party affiliations are not marked on the ballot, which has been a challenge for organizing around this election - I encountered many voters who said, "Yes, we plan on voting Democratic," not realizing that this wouldn't be possible today. ....

Democracy is hard work. One has to actually be informed - the ballot shouldn't be where you're figuring this stuff out. If you didn't know what Walker and the rest of the Teahadists were going to do before you voted, you're doing it wrong.

It's much easier to tell me to go fuck myself than to assume any responsibility for your part in the democratic process, I realize that. Also, I empathize with what you're going through - if this isn't a wake up call for all citizens, everywhere in this democracy, well then, there's nothing that's going to do it.

You know what to do in 2012 and onward - educate, get out the vote, donate money, and most importantly, vote.
posted by jivadravya at 3:37 PM on April 5, 2011


Democracy is hard work. One has to actually be informed - the ballot shouldn't be where you're figuring this stuff out. If you didn't know what Walker and the rest of the Teahadists were going to do before you voted, you're doing it wrong.

This is one reason why I love Washington State's 100% vote-by-mail system so much. You get your ballot well ahead of election day, along with an official voter information pamphlet. You can sit down with your ballot and do research online or whatever while you actually fill out your ballot. If you don't like the idea of USPSing your ballot in, there are dropoff boxes available in nearly every community, available from the time ballots are mailed to voters to the end of business on election day.

There's no pressure to try to be at a certain place on a certain day. There's no question about standing in line and missing work. There's just leisurely voting, in your own time. There's a guaranteed recount trail (because all the ballots filled out are paper). I don't know why more states don't do it.
posted by hippybear at 3:50 PM on April 5, 2011 [14 favorites]


Also, didn't WI used to have party voting ? You just marked a box and everyone from that party got your vote ?

They did, as of the early '90's.

Does WI still have those huge clunky mechanical voting robot machines? Complete with the little curtain? I loved those things.
posted by spinifex23 at 3:59 PM on April 5, 2011


There's no pressure to try to be at a certain place on a certain day. There's no question about standing in line and missing work. There's just leisurely voting, in your own time. There's a guaranteed recount trail (because all the ballots filled out are paper). I don't know why more states don't do it.

If we could get away from the First Tuesday In November voting system we currently have, and replace it with a Washington state mail-the-vote, or a weekend-vote or something that could increase voter turnout, I think that would be the greatest movement forward for our democracy since .. well I don't know when.
posted by jivadravya at 4:04 PM on April 5, 2011


hippybear, there's actually a dropoff box across the street from the building where I work. Voting has never been so easy. :) (Even easier for mr. epersonae: he just hands me his sealed ballot envelope and I drop it in the box for him.) Between being a college student in a different state from the one I grew up in, and WA's easy absentee ballot that transitioned to vote-by-mail, I've voted in person exactly once. (1996. Voted SO HARD against Ellen Craswell.)

It is really nice to have the opportunity to research as you vote, or even fill out the part of the ballot that you're sure about and then come back and finish later. (Dang judges.)
posted by epersonae at 4:04 PM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


Wisconsin does still have vote by party, but since the elections today are mostly "nonpartisan" it's not offered.

Some places might have the clunky mechanical voting (I remember going into those with my mom as a kid), every place I've voted at in a while though uses an optical scanner where you connect two ends of an arrow.
posted by drezdn at 4:08 PM on April 5, 2011


Some places might have the clunky mechanical voting (I remember going into those with my mom as a kid)

My father regularly serves as a poll worker in New Mexico. I asked him a couple of years ago why they did away with the old mechanical voting machines, and he didn't have any good reason to offer other than "we are moving toward new technology" or something similar.

After what I've read and seen about electronic voting machines, including optical scanners, I kind of wish we were still using the retro machines.
posted by hippybear at 4:11 PM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


The goal is to show Government is not competent.

yes, but wait until people find out the private sector isn't competent, either


The invisible hand is gonna clench up and give you SUCH a punch!

Add me to the list of folks who'd like to see real voting reform. Happily it seems like we're making some progress towards it. Here in the wish-we-were-still-DC area of Virginia the voting starts weeks in advance. Nominally it's only in-person absentee voting but the rules for what qualifies you for absentee are so loose (the fact that I work outside the county is enough, for example) that anyone who is challenged could pass muster... not that anyone ever is, to my knowledge. My family in South Florida similarly gets an extended period of time to show up and vote.

The only unfortunate thing is that one of the major pushbacks against extended voting hours is the culture of immediate feedback that has come to be so highly valued. Think of the froth in the days immediately after the 2000 election and all the chomping at the bit for a decision... that wouldn't matter till January. While there did eventually become timing issues there, the first week of madness was all just about wanting to KNOW, DAMMIT! Talk to anyone about extended voting windows and you'll hear the same sort of concerns.
posted by phearlez at 4:14 PM on April 5, 2011


There's no pressure to try to be at a certain place on a certain day. There's no question about standing in line and missing work. There's just leisurely voting, in your own time. There's a guaranteed recount trail (because all the ballots filled out are paper). I don't know why more states don't do it.

I think you just answered your own question, four times, before you even asked it. It's easier to get people to vote for you if they don't get reminded to do their research before voting day. It's easier to get people to vote for you if all they hear is what's on TV. And it's harder to disenfranchise people if they can take their time, get their ballot early, and contact the right people if it's never sent.

More states aren't like Washington because corrupt politicians like it the way it is. They can keep pulling more bad shit this way.
posted by mrgoat at 4:17 PM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


After what I've read and seen about electronic voting machines, including optical scanners, I kind of wish we were still using the retro machines.

I think the opticals are the way to go. The touch screens give you no way to really go back and be confident of original intent and the mechanicals are prone to maintenance issues. The whole Florida hanging chad thing had more to do with not simply emptying out the little catch box than anything else.

With an optical you can always go back to the piece of paper the voter saw and see what sort of marks were made on it. If you insist they are printed so they can be understood without any sort of additional key they're superior to the mechanical things that punch holes in cards or wind gears. In those cases you could in theory show one thing and capture a different meaning.
posted by phearlez at 4:18 PM on April 5, 2011


This is one reason why I love Washington State's 100% vote-by-mail system so much. You get your ballot well ahead of election day, along with an official voter information pamphlet. You can sit down with your ballot and do research online or whatever while you actually fill out your ballot. ... I don't know why more states don't do it.

More states don't do it because any system where the voter isn't guaranteed to be alone at the time of voting is one where the ballot isn't secret. And a secret ballot, where it is physically impossible for any third party to verify how you have voted, is a mighty fortress against vote buying and voter intimidation by employers.

Or, if you'd rather, any vote by mail system is deeply insecure.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 4:40 PM on April 5, 2011 [4 favorites]


You know, ROU_Xenophobe, when you put it that way, my paranoid theories sound like paranoid theories.

Still, we're allowed absentee ballots, so I wonder just how bad this insecurity can be, given that it's already a tolerated way to vote everywhere I'm aware of.
posted by mrgoat at 4:50 PM on April 5, 2011


And a secret ballot, where it is physically impossible for any third party to verify how you have voted, is a mighty fortress against vote buying and voter intimidation by employers.

While I understand those concerns, I fail to see how reality would mesh up with the requirement that anyone wanting to buy votes or intimidate voters would have to blanket the entire state with jackboots in order to visit every single home necessary to influence the vote in any significant way.
posted by hippybear at 4:58 PM on April 5, 2011


There are reports of ballots running out in various places in Wisconsin.
posted by drezdn at 5:24 PM on April 5, 2011


Why would you need an army of jackboots or to visit homes? All I need is an informal and deniable way of telling my employees that unless they bring their ballots to work on Monday so I can fill them out straight-Republican, they're fired.

Anyway, I doubt we'll convince each other and the thread is about something else, so I'll stop. You're welcome to the last word. [NOT SNARKIST]
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 5:26 PM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


Or, if you'd rather, any vote by mail system is deeply insecure.

Voter fraud in Washington State seems to happen mostly by way of faked signatures on referendum forms, before ballot distribution and collection happens. Despite claims from the state's beleaguered GOP, the process of voting on referendums (and officials) seems mostly clean, with very few actual prosecutions. Do you have specific examples of recent, mail-based ballot fraud in Washington?
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 5:30 PM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


Turnout high throughout the state -- will break 40% in (Dem-dominated) Madison, same in (Rep-leaning) Kenosha County. We're in uncharted political territory for a Supreme Court race.
posted by escabeche at 5:31 PM on April 5, 2011



and I feel that Wisconsin is getting exactly what they fucking deserve for electing this guy. Just like Ohio is getting the rogering we deserve.

And Florida. Don't forget Florida. In Scott we are getting what we deserve in spades.
posted by notreally at 5:55 PM on April 5, 2011


Wisconsin Election Results

madison.com

JSOnline

The Associated Press

Wisconsin Public Radio Live Webcasting (server is intermittent)
posted by desjardins at 6:50 PM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


NBC15 also has frequently updated results. As of this moment, it's 51% for Prosser, 49% for Kloppenburg, but they've been trading the lead back and forth quite a bit.
posted by altopower at 6:56 PM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


I should add, that's with 6% of precincts reporting.
posted by altopower at 6:57 PM on April 5, 2011




Milwaukee County Exec just swung havily for Abele (60-40) after being majority Stone until now.

Not to be too Manichean, but Abele's the good guy, Stone supports Walker.
posted by orthogonality at 7:10 PM on April 5, 2011


Scott Walker is great! I dig music that comes of the beatnik era, although I think this version is better. (Previously.)

It's so nice to have a forum where I can hang out with other Scott Walker fans.
posted by twoleftfeet at 7:13 PM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


It looks like Prosser has been maintaining a 51 to 49 lead over the last hour or so, with 18% of precincts reporting. Anyone know the details of which Wisconsin precincts tend to report later rather than earlier?
posted by localhuman at 7:31 PM on April 5, 2011


but they've been trading the lead back and forth quite a bit.

Yeah, only about 30% reporting right now, but they're within about 1,500 votes of one another with about half a million counted.

I really hope everyone voted, because this might turn out to be close.
posted by quin at 7:33 PM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


From what I hear... Conservative rural areas tend to report earlier. City of Madison isn't in yet, and missing big parts of Milwaukee County. Nearly 1/5 of the state lives in Milwaukee County.
posted by drezdn at 7:33 PM on April 5, 2011


I'm pretty sure Madison reports later, because no precincts from there have reported on other races. That will give Kloppenburg a HUGE advantage.
posted by altopower at 7:35 PM on April 5, 2011


Thanks drezdn, altopower, that's good to know.
posted by localhuman at 7:40 PM on April 5, 2011


Democrat Chris Abele will succeed Governor Walker as County Executive of Milwaukee County, beating State Representative and Koch addict Jeff Stone!
posted by orthogonality at 8:10 PM on April 5, 2011



With 58% of the state's wards reporting, (Democratic) challenger Kloppenburg has finally edged past incumbent (Kochpublican) Prosser for the Supreme Court seat. The race is still 50%/50% but Kloppenburg has, at this poinjt about 4000 morre votes than Prosser.
posted by orthogonality at 8:15 PM on April 5, 2011


61% reporting, Prosser again ahead, by about 1400 votes.
posted by orthogonality at 8:17 PM on April 5, 2011


massive turnout for an off-year off Nov election. WTG WI. A number of "good guys" have won down ticket seats, including Jeremy Oswald for Washburn City Council. I am cautiously optimist for Kloppenburg as the smaller rural areas are (mostly) in, and Kloppenburg can likely count of wide margins in many of the remaining districts (but no egg counting till it's done).

FWIW the Assemblyman who got tackled (remember him?), Nick Milroy... his area went 70% Kloppenburg.
posted by edgeways at 8:18 PM on April 5, 2011



Stone got demolished. Holy crap. 62%/38%
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 8:21 PM on April 5, 2011


64% reporting, Prosser pulls ahead, 51% - 49%, with about 18,000 more votes than Kloppenburg.
posted by orthogonality at 8:21 PM on April 5, 2011


Madison is just starting to report in. Not sure about Milwaukee or other areas.
posted by altopower at 8:21 PM on April 5, 2011


Madison is halfway reported: 75 of 147 wards reporting.
posted by orthogonality at 8:23 PM on April 5, 2011


orthogonality, where are you seeing those numbers? Mine on NBC15 still shows 50-50 with Kloppenburg having a slight edge.
posted by altopower at 8:23 PM on April 5, 2011


Try here
posted by edgeways at 8:24 PM on April 5, 2011


Madison numbers: http://host.madison.com/news/local/govt-and-politics/elections/

State-wide numbers: http://elections.todaystmj4.com/G8801.htm, which is showing Kloppenburg has plled ahead by about 1400 votes.
posted by orthogonality at 8:25 PM on April 5, 2011


anyone know the recount trigger margin for WI? Seems likely to be heading to that unless one of them absolutely surges at the end
posted by edgeways at 8:33 PM on April 5, 2011


Some info on recount laws here - didn't see anything about a margin trigger, although:
"For elections where more than 1,000 votes are cast, if the margin is not more than .5%, the initiator does not pay a fee; if it is between 0.5 and 2.0%, the fee is $5 per ward; and if it is greater than 2%, they pay the entire cost of the recount."
posted by desjardins at 8:44 PM on April 5, 2011


According to this 2007 elections manual, it looks like the threshold might be 1/2 of 1% of total votes cast?

But I really don't know. That was just Google.
posted by hippybear at 8:45 PM on April 5, 2011




There's no automatic threshold, I don't think. The candidate has to request it.
posted by desjardins at 8:47 PM on April 5, 2011


And that page states that not all states have automatic recounts, and implies that Wisconsin is one of them.
posted by hippybear at 8:48 PM on April 5, 2011


Wisconsin's Recount Manual (PDF)
posted by ZeusHumms at 8:49 PM on April 5, 2011


Oooh, at 81% she's pulled decently ahead now!
RESULTS as of Tuesday, Apr 05, 2011 at 10:52 pm CDT
Supreme Court REPORTING 81%
Joanne Kloppenburg 609,621 51%
David Prosser (inc) 591,880 49%
posted by flex at 8:54 PM on April 5, 2011


Gap getting wider - 35K ahead at 84%. Fingers crossed!
posted by flex at 9:01 PM on April 5, 2011


Lead dropping. Closest I've seen is less than 2000 votes with 90% reporting.
posted by ZeusHumms at 9:13 PM on April 5, 2011


nailbiter
posted by madamjujujive at 9:14 PM on April 5, 2011


Less than 2K lead at 90%. Almost half the precincts still outstanding in Waukesha County which is going heavily for Prosser so far.
posted by flex at 9:14 PM on April 5, 2011


cripes, I know this is the first time I have ever sat on the edge of my seat into the wee hours watching a race for a judge in a state 1500 miles away.
posted by madamjujujive at 9:19 PM on April 5, 2011


Anyway, I doubt we'll convince each other and the thread is about something else, so I'll stop.

I guess that means we won't see any evidence provided for voter fraud in Washington.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 9:20 PM on April 5, 2011


Don't see Kloppenburg pulling this off. Too many votes left in deep red Waukesha and Washington counties. She got the huge turnout she needed in Dane, but not in Milwaukee, unless there's a lot of votes left there (can't find precinct numbers to see what's left to count.)
posted by escabeche at 9:26 PM on April 5, 2011


Yeah, I'm pretty worried too now seeing the skew of the precincts outstanding and the lead so narrow. (Precinct numbers are on AP here).
posted by flex at 9:28 PM on April 5, 2011


Fastest vote tallies are here and Prosser is ahead again by less than 1K at the moment. 92% reporting.
posted by flex at 9:29 PM on April 5, 2011


Prosser opens a narrow lead. ffffffuuuuuuu.....
posted by madamjujujive at 9:30 PM on April 5, 2011


If, for counties with unreported wards, we extrapolate that those wards will vote in the same proportions as the wards in that county already reported, with their total vote proportional to the reported wards, then Prosser wins 51% statewide.
posted by orthogonality at 9:31 PM on April 5, 2011


Prosser up by 6500 now ....gd, I hate elections, this country sucks.
posted by madamjujujive at 9:37 PM on April 5, 2011


wisconsinreport
Notable precincts left: Dane (5), Eau Claire (41), Marathon (32), Mil (13), Ozaukee (8), Racine (10), Sauk (8) Waukesha (68)
posted by madamjujujive at 9:40 PM on April 5, 2011


Back down to less than 2K lead, but Prosser ahead still. Waukesha outstanding makes it look like a done deal, though. 95% reporting.
posted by flex at 9:42 PM on April 5, 2011



This is a win for Prosser. The precincts left are pretty red.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 9:42 PM on April 5, 2011


County    		#reported  	#tot	vProsser	v Klopenburg		wards unreported
Waukesha  		130		198	81,255	73%	29,332	27%		68
Dane			207		248	45,503	27%	124,880	73%		41
Eau Claire		20		61	2,837	40%	4,250	60%		41
Marathon		108		140	16,368	54%	14,032	46%		32
Washington		19		38	21,425	77%	6,555	23%		19
Milwaukee		473		486	93,255	44%	120,453	56%		13
Wood			44		56	5,710	49%	5,841	51%		12
Racine			53		63	19,606	54%	16,626	46%		10

posted by orthogonality at 9:43 PM on April 5, 2011


Oh, I can't stand this. Mefi, we have shared too many of these horrible elections together. I am sick, I tell you.
posted by madamjujujive at 9:44 PM on April 5, 2011


To be fair, she is soft on crime.
posted by Bonzai at 9:46 PM on April 5, 2011


They have 14 min to wrap this shit up or I'm going to bed.
posted by desjardins at 9:46 PM on April 5, 2011


Waukesha's all in now, 97% reporting, still less than 2K lead for Prosser - holding out hope here.
posted by flex at 9:49 PM on April 5, 2011


Lead is less than 1200 now, still at 97% in.
posted by madamjujujive at 9:53 PM on April 5, 2011


OMG AP has her 1500 ahead now.
posted by flex at 9:56 PM on April 5, 2011




cripes... It's Franken/Coleman all over again
posted by edgeways at 9:57 PM on April 5, 2011


AP's reports for Dane County are lagging the County Clerk, who gives Kloppenburg 2K more margin than AP is showing right now.
posted by escabeche at 9:57 PM on April 5, 2011


cripes... It's Franken/Coleman all over again

Hopefully the recount won't take as long. If anything though, this is a wake up call for both major parties.
posted by ZeusHumms at 9:58 PM on April 5, 2011


Yeah - now we're back to a ~4500 lead for Prosser, still 97% in.
posted by flex at 9:58 PM on April 5, 2011


I think that was Racine coming in?
posted by escabeche at 10:00 PM on April 5, 2011


And now AP's caught up with Dane County and we are at Prosser +2K.
posted by escabeche at 10:02 PM on April 5, 2011


32 wards in pro-Prosser Marathon County have yet to report.
21 in pro-Kloppenburg Eua Claire
12 in pro-K Milwaukee Co.
10 in pro-P Racine,
8 in pro-P Ozaukee
8 in pro-K Sauk

22 other wards in pro-K counties, 8 other wards in pro-P counties.

Totals: 63 pro-K, 58 pro-P, but some wards are larger than othwers, and each county has different proportions in their votes.
posted by orthogonality at 10:03 PM on April 5, 2011


101 wards to go.
posted by orthogonality at 10:04 PM on April 5, 2011


If anything though, this is a wake up call for both major parties.

Yeah, that's what they say every close election, but no one ever wakes up
posted by edgeways at 10:04 PM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


Racine's all in, pro-K Ashland is still 6 out.
posted by flex at 10:05 PM on April 5, 2011


If anything though, this is a wake up call for both major parties.

Nonsense. If Prosser wins, it shows that Walker has a mandate and if Kloppenburg wins, it means there is widespread voter fraud.

No matter the outcome, it is always good news for Republicans.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 10:06 PM on April 5, 2011 [6 favorites]


LiveBlog reports that many remaining ballots being hand counted in places where they ran out.
posted by madamjujujive at 10:07 PM on April 5, 2011


marathon is deeply purple, like the rest of the state...i'm holding out hope that we can turn the tide here....
posted by g.i.r. at 10:07 PM on April 5, 2011


No matter the outcome, it is always good news for Republicans.

How is it good that their possible margin of victory is so thin that a recount seems certain?
posted by ZeusHumms at 10:07 PM on April 5, 2011


I voted last year (in PA). We got a bunch of horrible Republicans anyway. Got an e-mail from Toomey letting me know that he appreciated my opinion on cuts in federal spending and that it's his goal to make the government more fiscally responsible. This is the guy who thinks that missile defense programs are still a good use of taxpayer's money.

But I digress. The real issue is that these past few years have been about groups of people getting excited. In 2008, it was people excited over Obama. I still think Obama is pretty great; it's clear that he's way, way more moderate than he came across as during the election and that kinda sucks, because 8 years of crazy-crazy-crazy conservativism - 4 years super-moderate progressive equally still pretty frikking crazy conservatism.

I think the solution, honestly, is to beat the conservatives at their own game. The whole political zeitgeist is so shifted to the right that we can't make real inroads into getting the government involved in social welfare. So we have to take that on ourselves, and radicalize it. It means pretty much taking yourself out of the system. Buy less, share more. Form collectives. Get involved in your local co-op. Move all your funds to a local bank. Use your car less. Get heavily involved in municipal and regional politics and ignore the national scene. Even if your local area is crazy at least it's your crazies. Conservatives want to get rid of the idea of general welfare by privatizing everything. So, don't give them anything to privatize. I just wish it all didn't take so much effort.
posted by Deathalicious at 10:07 PM on April 5, 2011 [3 favorites]


Anyway, I do wonder how the absentee ballots play into all this.
posted by ZeusHumms at 10:08 PM on April 5, 2011


Well, Twitter reports say "Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett just said on TV that in Milw. they have just begun to count the 8,000 absentee ballots". So.
posted by flex at 10:10 PM on April 5, 2011


Fuck yeah, Absentees for the Win!
posted by orthogonality at 10:11 PM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


Oh, I forgot another point -- if 2008 was about liberals getting all worked up, 2010 was the year for the Tea Party. There was just so much momentum there.

Don't forget that in 2006 there was a pretty significant upset for conservatives. These things work in cycles. Who knows what will happen next year.

Just get involved locally, it's usually easier to deal with than trying to get all hung up on Washington politics. Just, you know, vote every year according to your conscience and try to live your life attuned to your principles.
posted by Deathalicious at 10:11 PM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


For anyone who just joined this is what everyone is refreshing like crazy: AP ELECTIONS RESULTS
posted by Skygazer at 10:14 PM on April 5, 2011


Prosser's ahead <1K, but his counties are tapped out and Miluakee and Eau Clair, both Pro-K have sizeable districts still not reported.

Jeez, talk about your freaking nailbaiters....
posted by Skygazer at 10:16 PM on April 5, 2011


Do you know that the unreported districts in Milwaukee are actually sizable? There are lots of precincts in Dane and Waukesha with no people in them. As for Eau Claire, it split evenly between Walker and Barrett -- there might have been an anti-Walker swing, or there might be more pro-Walker wards left to count.

We just don't know. And we're probably not gonna know tonight.
posted by escabeche at 10:19 PM on April 5, 2011


Prosser still has 32 in Marathon which is going 54/46 for him.

P has 39 pro Precincts left and K has 46 pro Precincts left
posted by edgeways at 10:20 PM on April 5, 2011


don't count out marathon just yet. many wards in city of wausau not counted...a lot of good work was done here for K...
posted by g.i.r. at 10:23 PM on April 5, 2011


Have eyes propped open with toothpicks, just can't go to bed yet.
posted by madamjujujive at 10:24 PM on April 5, 2011


.1% difference
posted by edgeways at 10:26 PM on April 5, 2011


Marathon co. Election board says remaining wards in Wausau.

Which could be good news for K
posted by edgeways at 10:28 PM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


Currently, Marathon County looks like this:
Marathon 108 140 16,368 54% 14,032 46%

If you project that proportion out, you get a final vote of 21,218 to 18,189.

That is, Prosser is "due" to pick up (21,218 - 18,189) - (16,368 - 14,032) = 693 more votes there.

That's his biggest pickup.

Currently, Milwaukee County looks like this:

Milwaukee 474 486 95,129 43% 125,090 57%
proportioned final vote: 97537 to 128257

That is Kloppenburg is due to pick up (128257 - 97537 ) - ( 125,090 - 95,129 ) = 759 votes there.

And she has other, smaller pickups.
posted by orthogonality at 10:28 PM on April 5, 2011


rural votes in marathon already in, city of wausau is the hold-up. i don't think you can project a P win based on that.
posted by g.i.r. at 10:30 PM on April 5, 2011


From Twitter: Prosser staffers expect wausau numbers to come in next 10 minutes.
posted by madamjujujive at 10:33 PM on April 5, 2011


Twitter is reporting "last ward to report in dane county: 0228 C MIDDLETON WDS Prosser 953; Kloppenburg 2607". Dane County Clerk shows all precincts in.

Twitter is also pointing out that the slowdown is due to hand-counting the ballots (in the places that ran out and had to do paper); that Dane County has 7K absentees to count; and that absentees have until Monday to arrive in the mail?
posted by flex at 10:35 PM on April 5, 2011


I point out the Dane County thing because AP is still showing Dane with one precinct out, presumably not in the totals.
posted by flex at 10:37 PM on April 5, 2011


rural votes in marathon already in, city of wausau is the hold-up. i don't think you can project a P win based on that.

Not my point. My point is, even if Wausau mirrored Marathon, what Prosser gains there is offset by what Kloppenburg gains in Milwaukee.
posted by orthogonality at 10:39 PM on April 5, 2011


Another jump in the vote tally, still 2K lead for Prosser, still 97% in.
posted by flex at 10:40 PM on April 5, 2011


sorry, orthogonality. i misunderstood. need sleeeep..........
and your response makes me feel better
posted by g.i.r. at 10:42 PM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


98%, Koch Brothers ahead by 2003 votes.
posted by orthogonality at 10:43 PM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


And again. 98% in, Prosser 727,208, Kloppenburg 725,205.
posted by flex at 10:43 PM on April 5, 2011


Pretty sure that jump was Ozaukee precincts all in.
posted by flex at 10:45 PM on April 5, 2011


flex -- looks like you're right.
posted by orthogonality at 10:48 PM on April 5, 2011


Yeah, I have to wonder how the AFP postcard campaign worked out. The anti-Kloppenberg one basically said she votes for the law even if it's bad for business *gasp shock* while the pro-Prosser one kind of came off like he's pro-vigilante. I dunno if I didn't get any pro-Kloppenberg mailings because my district is solidly blue, or if the not-Koch crowd really missed the ball by that much. Thankfully I'll be in bed before they call it, even with my late hours.
posted by Kyol at 10:50 PM on April 5, 2011


At this point, if we project it out, if every remaining ward votes in the exact proportion of Prosser/Kloppenburg that its county has so far, and if every precinct in that county had exactly the same number of votes, Prosser would end up with







49.9% of the vote!
posted by orthogonality at 10:53 PM on April 5, 2011




Manitowoc and Buffalo topped off in the last jumps. Ashland. Crawford, that one precinct in Dane, Dunn, Eau Claire, Milwaukee, Sauk have precincts left, all pro-K counties; pro-P only has one precinct left in each Jefferson, Juneau, and Taylor.
posted by flex at 10:55 PM on April 5, 2011


Oh, and Marathon. Sorry. Damn, it's just about 2 AM. This is nuts.
posted by flex at 10:56 PM on April 5, 2011


The pro P Precincts are slowly being knocked off without much/any pickup for him. Outside of Marathon he only has 3 left. No one is really sure what marathon will do, 32 left there. K has 53 pro Precincts left

could be interesting
posted by edgeways at 10:57 PM on April 5, 2011


And Buffalo and Oconto.
posted by orthogonality at 10:57 PM on April 5, 2011


Whoops, Marathon is all in now. Prosser's lead still less than 2K.
posted by flex at 10:57 PM on April 5, 2011


Buffalo and Oconto are all in according to AP.
posted by flex at 10:58 PM on April 5, 2011


88 wards yet to report (not counting Absentee? Is Absentee its own ward in Wisconisn?)

Of those, 53 are in pro-Kloppenburg counties, as 32 are in Marathon and this are probably pro-K Wausau. Other than the marathon ones, only three are in pro-Prosser counties.

Projecting it out, Prosser loses by 880 votes (which is margin of error recount time, of course). And that projection ignores Wausau.
posted by orthogonality at 11:03 PM on April 5, 2011


Fox6 just reported that the Eau Claire votes might be in within the next 30 minutes
Prosser camp says there are still 30,000 votes out.
posted by madamjujujive at 11:03 PM on April 5, 2011


Wonder if they mean 30K including absentees. Because they better hope there is not 30K in regular ballots in those areas. Given that we've heard 8k in Milwaukee and 7k in Dane I could believe 30K including absentees.
posted by edgeways at 11:06 PM on April 5, 2011


AP says only 65 precincts left? Marathon all came in.
It looks good for Kloppenberg now, but yeah a recount looks super-likely.
posted by flex at 11:06 PM on April 5, 2011


unofficial/unconfirmd... just in: eau claire county prosser got 11000 votes and kloppenburg 16000!
posted by edgeways at 11:07 PM on April 5, 2011


I'm sorry, 55 precincts left. My math is shot, it's too late.
posted by flex at 11:08 PM on April 5, 2011


That would put her up by 3K overall?
posted by orthogonality at 11:08 PM on April 5, 2011


Yeah, about
posted by edgeways at 11:08 PM on April 5, 2011


then the only #'s of note (absent absentees) is Ashland 6, Saulk 8 and Milwaukee 12. all Pro K
posted by edgeways at 11:10 PM on April 5, 2011


Eau Claire County Clerk website confirms all 61 wards counted - 11214 Prosser, 15688 Kloppenberg. w00t! AP not counting those votes yet.
posted by flex at 11:11 PM on April 5, 2011


By my estimates, there are about 20K votes out, just counting normal (not absentee) wards, again, with the assumption all wards are similar sized, which isn't true.
posted by orthogonality at 11:11 PM on April 5, 2011


99% reporting, Prosser leading by ~600 votes according to TMJ4 site.
posted by flex at 11:13 PM on April 5, 2011


ok... would it not just KILL if the regular vote ended in a tie?
posted by edgeways at 11:13 PM on April 5, 2011


AP saying too close to call tonight.
posted by madamjujujive at 11:14 PM on April 5, 2011


AP now has Eau Claire all in, confirms TMJ4 numbers.
posted by flex at 11:15 PM on April 5, 2011


34 wards out, all but 2 in pro-K counties.
posted by orthogonality at 11:16 PM on April 5, 2011


K is going to win the general ballots. (I think) she has 32 pro areas to 2 pro P areas
posted by edgeways at 11:16 PM on April 5, 2011


or.. what Orth said
posted by edgeways at 11:17 PM on April 5, 2011


Nails & eyes bleeding, must retire ... I am counting on y'all to salvage things while I am away, thanks.
posted by madamjujujive at 11:19 PM on April 5, 2011


(clarification from someone's post above. I think the absentees where due THIS Monday4/4/11, not next)
posted by edgeways at 11:19 PM on April 5, 2011


OK, how many of you are following #wict? And how many of you are posting to it?

And are you all Wisconsin political junkies at this hour? Or out-of-state geo-numbers savants? (I feel like I just found out about on-line poker by logging into a hustler's message board...)
posted by Mngo at 11:20 PM on April 5, 2011


Too bad it's so close, Walker and the Fitzgeralds will call that an anti-union referendum: "if you take away the union members who voted for Kloppenburg, it's clear that normal voters are for Koch government!"
posted by orthogonality at 11:21 PM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


We are all Wisconsinites now.
posted by Skygazer at 11:22 PM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


Or something like that...
posted by Skygazer at 11:24 PM on April 5, 2011


Myself I live 5 miles from the WI boarder and have a lot of WI ties.



It'll be interesting to see the initial breakdown of where the absentees come from. 8k in Milwaukee and 7K in Dane which are Pro-K areas. Those are the only two counties I know (or have reasonable info) about. How many are out there, and where in the state. Proser staff says as many as 30K absentees. In that case 50% are already in Pro K areas. Right now I am cautious optimistic.
posted by edgeways at 11:24 PM on April 5, 2011


Good to know, edgeways, I repeated it off Twitter but it didn't sound right to me at all, hence the question mark.

Mngo, I am following http://www.thedailypage.com/walker/ for multiple Twitter feeds and refreshing the AP and TMJ4 pages. I really should be long asleep, but I'm too nervy over this and following results/doing math calms me down a little. I can't believe this one election feels so important to me, but it does; I want to believe the tide is turning. Also I'm worried plenty about our election here in a month (Canada) - I want good news from Wisconsin at least.
posted by flex at 11:27 PM on April 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


This is gonna be Franken-Coleman all over again, and the Wisconsin Supreme Court is going to have to settle a Wisconsin Supreme Court election. Of course Prosser'll have to recuse himself, but what of the rest of the court?

This is going to go on forever.
posted by orthogonality at 11:27 PM on April 5, 2011


man.. that last Dane precinct is sitting there like a little bomb
posted by edgeways at 11:28 PM on April 5, 2011


I think it all depends on how close the absentees make it. Counting them will certainly be dragged out, but if the final margin is high enough (say 5k+?) that should end it.
posted by edgeways at 11:29 PM on April 5, 2011


Like a Muslim terrorist homicide bomb, Fox News said.
posted by orthogonality at 11:29 PM on April 5, 2011


Well we know that Dane precinct is already in and it went "Prosser 953; Kloppenburg 2607", yeah? Just waiting for it to be added to the tally?
posted by flex at 11:31 PM on April 5, 2011


I am gearing up for a Minnesota-style Coleman/Franken deal, myself; neither side is likely to concede and it seems close enough at the moment to support any number of recounts and lawsuits.

Of course Prosser'll have to recuse himself, but what of the rest of the court?
That's ignoring our proud tradition (Annette Ziegler, Michael Gableman most recently) of judicial misconduct in Wisconsin. Those cases are of course less flagrant than Prosser hearing arguments on the validity of his own position, but I'll believe anything these days.

(I'm a proud Wisconsinite, born and raised, and no matter what happens in this state Supreme Court race I'll be celebrating the passage of an advisory referendum opposing Citizens United in my county and my city.)
posted by yomimono at 11:32 PM on April 5, 2011 [3 favorites]


Prosser speaking live here: http://www.fox6now.com/news/livestreaming/
posted by flex at 11:40 PM on April 5, 2011


Two Tweets I just saw:
"1:33 AM Jefferson County says Town of Lake Mills Totals WILL NOT be available Until April 6th. No reason cited."
"1:39am: Update per Dunn County: Klopp 5164 Prosser 4076. This will add 233 votes to Klopp's margin. Per Dunn Cty Clerk."
posted by flex at 11:43 PM on April 5, 2011


looking at Dane Co's Clerk's page The -1 on the AP page may be a mistake (or an empty ward). we may have all the actual numbers from Dane already counted
posted by edgeways at 11:46 PM on April 5, 2011


Looks like the news is going to sleep and AP went to sleep. I should sleep too.
posted by flex at 11:48 PM on April 5, 2011


Most everybody's asleep in Grover's Corners. There are a few lights on: Shorty Hawkins, down at the depot, has just watched the Albany train go by. And at the livery stable somebody's setting up late and talking. -- Yes, it's clearing up. There are the stars -- doing their old, old crisscross journeys in the sky. Scholars haven't settled the matter yet, but they seem to think there are no living beings up there. Just chalk... or fire. Only this one is straining away, straining away all the time to make something of itself. The strain's so bad that every sixteen hours everybody lies down and gets a rest. Hm... Eleven o'clock in Grover's Corners. -- You get a good rest, too. Good night.
posted by orthogonality at 11:51 PM on April 5, 2011 [8 favorites]


JoAnne Kloppenburg told supporters to go home and get some sleep because the race remained too close to call tonight.

Kloppenburg said The Associated Press told her it would not call the race tonight with pockets of votes around the state yet to be counted.

“We won’t know until tomorrow,” she told the crowd with unofficial returns showing her trailing narrowly.

“It’s not over yet. We’re still hopeful. Let’s all get a good night’s sleep and see what tomorrow brings.”
From Wispolitics.org, via J. Klops herself, via Twitter, probably from the Edgewater.
posted by yomimono at 11:54 PM on April 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


night from me too.
posted by edgeways at 11:59 PM on April 5, 2011


(The fact that it is bar time may have had some impact on the timing of her announcement)
posted by yomimono at 12:04 AM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


God, this gives me agita. At least it's looking (from the AP) like Big K's in a good place.

And I'm glad to see that my aunt's county came out against Prosser (mostly). Crawford's a pretty liberal little enclave, for the most part.
posted by klangklangston at 1:22 AM on April 6, 2011


That motherfucking governor. I just know he's gonna ban cheese curds.
posted by hal_c_on at 5:22 AM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]




GOOD MORNING WISCONSIN
posted by desjardins at 6:20 AM on April 6, 2011 [3 favorites]


So--what the hell? Is the supreme court race still too close to call?
posted by saulgoodman at 7:19 AM on April 6, 2011


Yes. The numbers shifted a little this morning. Right now the AP says Prosser's up by ~800 votes and is reporting 24 precincts left to get votes in (but we know some of those are in fact already counted and done, so). The TMJ4 count just jumped and now the spread is <450 with Prosser leading.
posted by flex at 7:26 AM on April 6, 2011


Now it's down to 18 precincts.
posted by desjardins at 7:28 AM on April 6, 2011


Anyone who says "I didn't bother yesterday, it's only one vote" is going to get a firm smack upside the head from me today.
posted by desjardins at 7:29 AM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]




Ahh, that was Ashland coming in. Okay, so now the AP just has 18 out.
That's 2 precincts in Milwaukee, 2 in Dunn, 8 in Sauk, 1 each in Jefferson, Juneau, and Taylor; and the AP says 2 in Crawford and 1 in Dane but Swing State Project says we know those are all totaled, so I don't know why the AP is not showing them as being in.
posted by flex at 7:30 AM on April 6, 2011


So wait...is the one from Dane County showing in the vote totals? Or has it just been totaled and not counted? I'm confused.
posted by altopower at 7:34 AM on April 6, 2011


Is it just me or is the Isthmus including a lot of teabaggers in their live feed now? Or are they all ironic? Example:

NickBaumann: Can't believe that ACORN came back from the dead to steal or almost-steal the Wisconsin Supreme Court elections. #wivote #wiunion

ORConservative: I'm wondering if - er, when - #wiunion and @WisDems started exhuming bodies for more votes last night.

posted by desjardins at 7:36 AM on April 6, 2011


We're not sure. Dane County Clerk said last night all the precincts are in 100% and totaled. But the AP's been showing it one precinct down all this time. edgeways speculated that it may be an empty ward or a mistake by the AP, and that the Dane County totals may already be counted in the full vote tally.
posted by flex at 7:39 AM on April 6, 2011


Numbers jumped again. Kloppenberg is up by 140 votes.
posted by flex at 7:40 AM on April 6, 2011


AP showing Kloppenburg at +140 with only 10 precincts to go. This is the closest I've seen it.
posted by desjardins at 7:40 AM on April 6, 2011


That was Sauk coming in, that jump. Sauk is all in now.
posted by flex at 7:41 AM on April 6, 2011


Thanks for clarifying, flex.
posted by altopower at 7:42 AM on April 6, 2011


What is the automatic recount level in Wisconsin?
posted by Benny Andajetz at 7:46 AM on April 6, 2011


There is no automatic recount in WI. The candidate has to request it. Covered this upthread.
posted by desjardins at 7:48 AM on April 6, 2011


Huh. Apparently, Scott Walker has flinched: he's rescinding the raise.
posted by saulgoodman at 7:49 AM on April 6, 2011


5 precincts left, says AP. Kloppenberg up 369 votes.
posted by flex at 7:56 AM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


There is no automatic recount in WI. The candidate has to request it. Covered this upthread.

Thanks.
posted by Benny Andajetz at 7:56 AM on April 6, 2011


AP is now counting Dunn, Crawford, and Dane as all in. So all that's left is the 2 in Milwaukee and the 1 each out in Jefferson, Juneau, and Taylor.
posted by flex at 7:57 AM on April 6, 2011


damn it! I can't update my spreadsheet that fast.
posted by Bonzai at 7:59 AM on April 6, 2011


Swing State Project said this morning: "8:57am: The JS is reporting that the last two Milwaukee County precincts are in West Allis, which gave Prosser 63% in the first round."

Jefferson and Taylor lean pro-Prosser, Juneau is pretty much even down the middle. Ack.

I haven't seen anything on those 8000 absentees in Milwaukee or the 7000 absentees in Dane County since last night. If Dane County is all in I assume their absentees are in that total as well.
posted by flex at 8:00 AM on April 6, 2011


the most unfortunate thing now is that by an old Wisconsin law ties are decided via wrestling match.
posted by Bonzai at 8:01 AM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


AP says now Kloppenberg up 447, but no precinct count change.
posted by flex at 8:02 AM on April 6, 2011


the most unfortunate thing now is that by an old Wisconsin law ties are decided via wrestling match.

Huh, I would have thought that was a Minnesota thing.
posted by maryr at 8:07 AM on April 6, 2011


If the outstanding district vote totals are the same as the totals in the districts already in for each county, my spreadsheet has around 1,800 votes uncounted.
posted by Bonzai at 8:08 AM on April 6, 2011


The precinct left in Jefferson is Lake Mills and the one in Taylor is Maplehurst. Swing State Project thinks those are both less Prosser-leaning than their counties as a whole. I wouldn't know myself. I would guess the Milwaukee absentees are in as well. So yeah it's just breath-holding now. No way it's not going to be a recount whichever way it goes.
posted by flex at 8:11 AM on April 6, 2011


Huh, I would have thought that was a Minnesota thing.

Not fake Hollywood wrestling. Real wrestling, stripped to the waist and in a pit. Candidates are allowed to use bear grease if they so choose.

It goes back to Wisconsin's French fur trading days.
posted by Bonzai at 8:12 AM on April 6, 2011


Another jump. Kloppenberg up by 311.
posted by flex at 8:13 AM on April 6, 2011


I haven't seen anything on those 8000 absentees in Milwaukee or the 7000 absentees in Dane County since last night. If Dane County is all in I assume their absentees are in that total as well.

It's possible.. but I kind of doubt it. I think "all in" refers to regular ward reporting, not absentees.
posted by edgeways at 8:13 AM on April 6, 2011


It goes back to Wisconsin's French fur trading days.
posted by Bonzai at 8:12 AM on April 6 [+] [!]


Also, beer breaks are mandatory between each round. Sorry, it's the law.
posted by gc at 8:15 AM on April 6, 2011


Maybe? The totals have edged up twice now with no precinct count change. Those could be absentees added in?
posted by flex at 8:15 AM on April 6, 2011


or just corrected totals, especially from hand counted areas
posted by edgeways at 8:17 AM on April 6, 2011




Election officials in the township were expected to meet at 8:30 a.m. this morning to finish counting 24 paper ballots that have not yet been counted, make the necessary correction to their tally sheets and then report their vote totals to the County Clerk's office at the courthouse. But that meeting did not occur because of a lack of a quorum of the town's Board of Canvassers

Probable translation: someone forgot to set their motherfucking alarm.
posted by desjardins at 8:30 AM on April 6, 2011 [2 favorites]


This happens in every election. It just doesn't get noticed because the margins are usually too big and no one pays attention to the final corrections that come in at the end.

Why are there shifting numbers? a few possibilities: Absentees are starting to be counted in from smaller counties. Corrected totals are being reported, especially in wards where hand counting occurred. Addition mistakes being rectified upon rechecking (keep in mind the people that where doing the reporting at 10p-11p-12a-1a had been up and working since early that morning, people here where having trouble doing math at those hours and they didn't spend all day manning the polling stations)
posted by edgeways at 8:37 AM on April 6, 2011


Juneau and Taylor all in. Kloppenberg up 240 votes.
posted by flex at 8:39 AM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


Flex, can I get a link?
posted by Ironmouth at 8:40 AM on April 6, 2011


AP link
posted by desjardins at 8:41 AM on April 6, 2011


Thanks
posted by Ironmouth at 8:48 AM on April 6, 2011


From the Kloppenburg page - The poster says "just returned from the town of lake mills poll they are waiting to count 24 handwritten ballots otherwise the results from there are K-362 P-364 this is the last jefferson county ward to report."

so P picks up between 2 and 26 (guessing about 5) and the attention shifts to the last two Milwaukee wards. (and I wish someone would definitively address the absentee issue, are they counted or not)
posted by edgeways at 9:16 AM on April 6, 2011


Edgeways, what Kloppenburg page are you referring to?
posted by lalex at 9:38 AM on April 6, 2011


At least one local outlet is saying all the numbers from Milwaukee are already in..,. oop AP update seems to confirm the last thing. Klopp is going to win this round
posted by edgeways at 9:39 AM on April 6, 2011


facebook: http://www.facebook.com/RecallScottWalker#!/pages/JoAnne-Kloppenburg-for-Wisconsin-Supreme-Court/166626243374359
posted by edgeways at 9:40 AM on April 6, 2011


1 district left now, and we pretty much know the range of outcome there. (K+24 - P+26) which is less then the 224 difference.

Some folks are saying the absentees where indeed counted last night, if true then on to the next stage - the recount. Then court challenges of absentees.
posted by edgeways at 9:42 AM on April 6, 2011


Also, beer breaks are mandatory between each round. Sorry, it's the law.

I thought that was the reason Milwaukee was taking so long to get it's count done honestly...
posted by Skygazer at 9:50 AM on April 6, 2011


Supposedly the last Milwaukee County ward was in West Allis. My dad worked one of the precincts in West Allis. I wonder if his has reported yet.
posted by drezdn at 10:14 AM on April 6, 2011


I should say, I wonder if his is the one that took so long to report.
posted by drezdn at 10:18 AM on April 6, 2011


there didn't seem to be any change in the AP numbers when they finally updated the Mil numbers, might have been another empty Ward like Dane
posted by edgeways at 10:31 AM on April 6, 2011


Miller says results bode well for recall effort of 3 republicans:
Miller said that Kloppenburg outpolled Prosser in the districts of Randy Hopper (R-Fond du Lac), Dan Kapanke (R-La Crosse) and Luther Olsen (R-Ripon.) The three are among 16 state senators who are eligible for re-call attempts – eight Republicans and eight Democrats.
posted by madamjujujive at 10:40 AM on April 6, 2011


Prosser's campaign director says:

"We are assembling our legal team and continuing to watch our vote totals," Nemoir said. "We are encouraged by the turnout and believe in a record-setting Supreme Court election there’s plenty of reason to believe there’s unrecognized opportunity to deliver a victory."

What is this unrecognized opportunity business?
posted by madamjujujive at 10:53 AM on April 6, 2011


WTMJ says Kloppenberg pretty much has this round of counts

http://www.620wtmj.com/news/local/119299974.html
posted by Ironmouth at 10:55 AM on April 6, 2011


JK needs to get Franken's crack team. They did a pretty bang up job last time around
posted by edgeways at 10:55 AM on April 6, 2011


What is this unrecognized opportunity business?

They'll try to find people that voted multiple times or weren't legally able to vote, if they're honest. If they're dishonest, they're magically finding ballots that everyone missed.
posted by drezdn at 10:58 AM on April 6, 2011


"We are assembling our legal team and continuing to watch our vote totals," Nemoir said. "We are encouraged by the turnout and believe in a record-setting Supreme Court election there’s plenty of reason to believe there’s unrecognized opportunity to deliver a victory."

This makes no sense. None.
posted by altopower at 10:59 AM on April 6, 2011


Well, I was gonna make a nice county map using these instructions, but I've never used python before and it's completely inscrutable past step 4.
posted by desjardins at 10:59 AM on April 6, 2011



Here is a nice map.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 11:00 AM on April 6, 2011 [2 favorites]


"We are assembling our legal team and continuing to watch our vote totals," Nemoir said. "We are encouraged by the turnout and believe in a record-setting Supreme Court election there’s plenty of reason to believe there’s unrecognized opportunity to deliver a victory."

This makes no sense. None


Makes perfect sense. It means: "no comment."
posted by Ironmouth at 11:03 AM on April 6, 2011


AP has Kloppenberg up 336 now.
posted by Ironmouth at 11:09 AM on April 6, 2011


Over on Prosser's FB page its Voter Fraud 100%. Claims are ridiculous, like more people voted in one county than are registered etc. mmmmhmmmm that's it yeah.

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Justice-David-Prosser/162347930469663?ref=ts
posted by Ironmouth at 11:13 AM on April 6, 2011


there’s plenty of reason to believe there’s unrecognized opportunity to deliver a victory

Anyone who has watched Hacking Democracy knows there's a lot of unrecognized opportunity to deliver a victory. And Diebold hopes it stays that way.

If you haven't seen it, it's 80 minutes long and worth watching. Here it is on Google Video.
posted by hippybear at 11:14 AM on April 6, 2011 [5 favorites]


Swing State Project says: "12:37pm: Great news - those "missing" two precincts in West Allis (suburban Milwaukee County) were either empty or already counted. So MKE is done and Kloppenburg's vote lead remains unchanged at 224. Now we just wait for Lake Mills (JeffCo) to count. And then, of course, on to the absentees."

"1:29pm: James Hell here. DavidNYC sends an update from another dimension: State Rep. Kelda Helen Roys, who represents the Lake Mills area, said Prosser picked up only 2 votes in Lake Mills, pending the count of 24 handwritten ballots."

So that's the first mention of the absentees I've seen.
posted by flex at 11:15 AM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


So, looking at that map, I didn't realize how much of eastern Wisconsin was conservative (though this is going to be a harder election to win independents on). Is that just all the rich assholes up from Chicago buying summer homes or what? It's just weirdly flipped from Michigan.

Can anyone give me a demographic snapshot of Wisconsin geography? I only really know Madison, Milwaulkee and then a bit of the rural east where my aunt lives (outside of the first solar city in the country).
posted by klangklangston at 11:19 AM on April 6, 2011


Over on Prosser's FB page its Voter Fraud 100%.

yeah. TBF though no matter which side won in a race this close the other side would scream fraud. It happens in every close election with so much emotion wrapped up in it.
Prior to JK pulling ahead there where plenty of anti-Walker folks absolutely sure the election had been rigged and there was no way it could be this close.

*shrug*.

As important as the race was, it was at least nominally a non-partisan race and incumbents have such a huge advantage in those races, JK came from obscurity a month or so back and looks poised to win. that really is a tidal wave. Count Prosser as the first Walker casualty.
posted by edgeways at 11:20 AM on April 6, 2011


Wisconsin's voting machines are required by law to run on open-source code. (Yet another reason to keep an eye on our current legislature - as we all know, laws can be repealed.)
posted by yomimono at 11:21 AM on April 6, 2011 [4 favorites]


Is that just all the rich assholes up from Chicago buying summer homes or what? It's just weirdly flipped from Michigan.

Nope, we have plenty of rich assholes of our own. Also, theoretically, residents of another state shouldn't be able to vote here, although they ARE from Illinois...
posted by desjardins at 11:24 AM on April 6, 2011


I didn't realize how much of eastern Wisconsin was conservative

Well, the good news, looking at that map, is most of WI seems to still have at least 1/3 of the population voting non-conservative. So put any random 6 people together in a room from most of those counties, and and chances are at least 2 of them if not more will not be conservative.

That's why I hate the red/blue mentality. It's based on a winner-take-all worldview and doesn't really have much nuance as to the reality of the population that lives in such places.
posted by hippybear at 11:24 AM on April 6, 2011



Count Prosser as the first Walker casualty.

No, that would be Jeff Stone, the Republican Assemblyman who was running for Walker's vacated position as Milwaukee county executive and had actually voted in favor of the Budget Repair Bill.

He was the favorite 2 months ago, and got absolutely demolished last night.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 11:24 AM on April 6, 2011 [3 favorites]


For anyone wondering why Menominee is a blue island on that map - it's an Indian reservation.
posted by desjardins at 11:25 AM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


Meanwhile over on Walker's twitter feed, he's twittering furiously (compared to most days), about everything, BUT the election last night and it is a golden moment of satisfaction, in terms of this man getting the message. He can't even congratulate the mayor of Madison or the Dem who won the seat in Milwaukee?

Looks like the silent majority of Wisconsin have spoken and handed ole Scotty a great big helping of STFU and sit the fuck down, and wipe that dullwited smirk off your face, cos your true bosses have just spoken loud and clear.

It's a good day for America. Yep.
posted by Skygazer at 11:27 AM on April 6, 2011 [2 favorites]


I can only speak for where I have lived in the past: NW WI. Despite Duffy coming from there Ashland Co. has a very liberal, activist college (Northland) and the students vote. looking at Ashland numbers I wouldn't be shocked if fully 15-20% of the totals came from the college kids. Bayfield Co. has a lot of artists/hippie types, and just elected my friend, Jeremy Oswald to the Washburn city council (yay). Douglas Co has the city of Superior (where Nick Milroy is from), lots of musicians, gay friendly folks, and UWSuperior, it is also contiguous to MN, and especially Duluth which is strong DFL territory, so there is bleedover.
posted by edgeways at 11:28 AM on April 6, 2011 [2 favorites]


Can anyone give me a demographic snapshot of Wisconsin geography?

Milwaukee County is surrounded by rich old white people. We're the most segregated metro area in the US. I can't comment too far beyond that.
posted by desjardins at 11:28 AM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


No, that would be Jeff Stone, the Republican Assemblyman who was running for Walker's vacated position as Milwaukee county executive and had actually voted in favor of the Budget Repair Bill.

He was the favorite 2 months ago, and got absolutely demolished last night.


I stand pleasantly corrected.
posted by edgeways at 11:30 AM on April 6, 2011




I think anytime you link to WSJ anymore, "right-wing slanted POV" is assumed.

I don't know how well they did with being in the center before Murdoch bought it, but since then, I've noticed a growing disconnect between reality and editorial which is impossible to ignore.
posted by hippybear at 11:36 AM on April 6, 2011


Anyone with insight as to how recounts tend to go? I thought I heard that urban votes tend to be under-counter (good news for the Dems) but is that the case?
posted by drezdn at 11:38 AM on April 6, 2011



TPM is reporting that all the votes are in and Kloppeburg won by 204 votes.

Of course, there are recounts and adjustments and whatnot. But.. there it is.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 11:40 AM on April 6, 2011


Jeff Stone did get the most votes in the primary but Chris Abele (Leftish) and Jim Sullivan (Definitely Left) got more votes than Stone did if you combined the two.

I'm somewhat surprised Abele did as well as he did, because the right wing talkers went all out in trying to bring him down (revealed a DUI, a tax issue with the IRS, and the fact that he once blew off fireworks in the city). Plus, Abele got only a lukewarm endorsement from the local liberal weekly because he helped end their film festival.
posted by drezdn at 11:41 AM on April 6, 2011


TPM is reporting that all the votes are in and Kloppeburg won by 204 votes.

Of course, there are recounts and adjustments and whatnot. But.. there it is.


yeah, I was pumping them with those links from here and from Kloppenberg's page all day.
posted by Ironmouth at 11:47 AM on April 6, 2011


Count Prosser as the first Walker casualty.

Edgeways, I read this as "Count Prosser," and for a moment asked myself "He's a Count??"
posted by Skygazer at 11:52 AM on April 6, 2011 [5 favorites]


Well, at least my guess that "this might turn out to be close" was on the money. Because 204 out of something like 1.2 million votes is a pretty damn fine margin.

Assuming this all goes well, I'm really going to use this as a way to highlight the "get off your ass and vote because it might matter a lot" point in the future.
posted by quin at 11:54 AM on April 6, 2011 [2 favorites]


Count Prosser as the first Walker casualty.

Edgeways, I read this as "Count Prosser," and for a moment asked myself "He's a Count??"


Yes, because he will be counting--"They call me the Count because I love to count things"
posted by Ironmouth at 11:54 AM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


We just went trough two close elections MN, and while we historically have high voter turnout, there will always be those who can't be bothered.

Skygazer: ha. funny
posted by edgeways at 11:55 AM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


OK folks, I'm seeing there is an issue with students being turned away at UW. Kloppenberg's facebook page is saying you have to get down to the clerk's office by 4 PM to get your ballot in.
posted by Ironmouth at 11:58 AM on April 6, 2011


This Journal Sentinel article has a lot of good information on the details of a recount. (Apologies if it's been posted already; a cursory search didn't find it.)
By 4 p.m. Wednesday, municipal clerks must deliver all their materials to the offices of county clerks around the state.

By 9 a.m. Thursday, county boards of canvassers have to start meeting and making an official report on ward by ward vote totals. Those reports will be sent to the Accountability Board. The Accountability Board technically has until May 15 to certify the results, but Kennedy said a recount could begin as soon as Tuesday.

...

In one twist, state law calls for Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson to appoint the state judge who would hear the case if the loser of a recount in a statewide election goes to court over the outcome. Abrahamson and Prosser have clashed on the court. Prosser's private remark calling Abrahamson a "total bitch" was the subject of a recent political ad attacking Prosser.

...

The statute says the appeals process outlined above is the "exclusive judicial remedy" in the case of a recount dispute. It does not explicitly say whether the finding of the Court of Appeals could then be appealed to the state Supreme Court, on which Prosser sits.

But Kennedy of the Accountability Board says he understands the law to mean that a decision by the Court of Appeals on the state Supreme Court race could in fact be appealed to the state Supreme Court.
posted by yomimono at 12:01 PM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


The statute says the appeals process outlined above is the "exclusive judicial remedy" in the case of a recount dispute. It does not explicitly say whether the finding of the Court of Appeals could then be appealed to the state Supreme Court, on which Prosser sits.

Prosser would have to recuse himself.
posted by Ironmouth at 12:09 PM on April 6, 2011


AP reporting all precincts in!

204 vote victory for Kloppenberg.
posted by Ironmouth at 12:10 PM on April 6, 2011


"Despite Duffy coming from there Ashland Co. has a very liberal, activist college (Northland) and the students vote."

That's where my cousin got his degree in Environmental Communication.

"We're the most segregated metro area in the US. I can't comment too far beyond that."

Huh. I always heard that was Detroit.
posted by klangklangston at 12:17 PM on April 6, 2011


Nope! You're #4, slacker. We're #1!

*sob*
posted by desjardins at 12:21 PM on April 6, 2011


Am I reading this right? Assuming this is a referendum on Walker, the two counties that have had "direct involvement" with Walker went stupendously against him.

To know him is to love him, apparently. :)
posted by Benny Andajetz at 12:22 PM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


Whoa, desjardins had almost my exact same comment, only with a different link.
posted by quin at 12:24 PM on April 6, 2011


the two counties that have had "direct involvement" with Walker went stupendously against him.

This was also true in the 2010 gubernatorial election, where Walker only got 38% of the vote in Milwaukee County.
posted by desjardins at 12:25 PM on April 6, 2011


KlangKlanstein: That's where my cousin got his degree in Environmental Communication.

What the hell is that? Do people climb trees and shout at each other across a field?

Tree Guy #1: HEY OVER THERE. HOW'S YOUR TREE DOING?

Tree Guy #2: JUST FINE, AND YOURS?

Tree Guy #1: A SQUIRREL JUST TRIED TO ATTACK ME...

Tree Guy #2: MAYBE YOU SHOULD CLIMB DOWN FROM THERE...
posted by Skygazer at 12:34 PM on April 6, 2011 [7 favorites]


From Facebook is more info about the student votes by 4PM deadline that Ironmouth is talking about above: "4PM TODAY: If you are a student who voted in Wisconsin yesterday with a provisional ballot because you registered for the first time and did not bring your driver's license or proof of residency, make sure you get that information to the municipal clerk's office, which is in Madison on MLK Drive downtown, by 4:00 today or your vote will not count in the recount. Your vote quite literally could determine the outcome."
posted by flex at 12:41 PM on April 6, 2011


This could be an issue in Milwaukee too, with MPS students. Madison says only 3 provisional ballots cast there.
posted by drezdn at 12:59 PM on April 6, 2011


If you could, pass the provisional ballot info on as quickly as you can to everyone in Wisconsin, it might be important.
posted by drezdn at 1:00 PM on April 6, 2011


"What the hell is that? Do people climb trees and shout at each other across a field?"

Some hippy bullshit. He works as a bike mechanic at a co-op in Madison.

No, it's really a degree that combines environmental science across disciplines with a modal communication focus that emphasizes explaining technical things to a non-technical audience. If he wanted to make money, he'd be the guy creating communications campaigns for putting in wind farms and shit like that, where you have to explain to a community why they should invest in green technology or not put in a dam or whatever. But for the moment, I think he's content riding bikes around and being fawned over by women, since as a golden long-haired farm boy he's like catnip or something. The last time I saw him, there were four girls crawling all over him in a big pile while he pined sweetly innocently for his girlfriend off in Madison.
posted by klangklangston at 1:01 PM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


Kloppenberg declares victory.
posted by flex at 1:02 PM on April 6, 2011


Kloppenburg is handling this the right way. Act like a winner and then hire the best lawyers you can get to back you up.
posted by drezdn at 1:04 PM on April 6, 2011 [3 favorites]


Exactly what I was thinking, drezdn. It's an image thing.
posted by flex at 1:05 PM on April 6, 2011


Isn't that basically what the FitzWalker people have been doing? Act like they've won and dare anyone to tell them otherwise.
posted by VTX at 1:07 PM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


Yeah. The Republicans are much better the image management/moving in lockstep thing. It works, it influences the outcome so it's good to see the Democrats not waffle about with this here.
posted by flex at 1:09 PM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


For reference, this is an even thinner margin than Al Franken won with, and that took two months of recounts and six months of court cases to sort out. Could be a while before J-Klo actually puts on the robe.
posted by echo target at 1:10 PM on April 6, 2011


klangklangston, what year/s did you cousin go to Northland? I, also, went there ('89-'94). I'm assuming he is still a young stud though if he is living the bohemian lifestyle, so no real chance of knowing him... still.. a connection.
posted by edgeways at 1:14 PM on April 6, 2011


If I'm not mistaken, doesn't the winner of this election normally take office in August?
posted by ZeusHumms at 1:21 PM on April 6, 2011


Seeing news that provisional ballots aren't in the AP counts and wouldn't be counted unless I.D. was delivered today. This is good for Kloppenburg because the likely provisional ballots would tend to be students and if anything will add to her vote total, and barring a massive Prosser provisional pile, can't hurt her.
posted by drezdn at 1:23 PM on April 6, 2011


Democrat has tiny lead in symbolic Wisconsin election

The Slate blog post referenced in that piece says:

"If Kloppenburg does come out on top," said Larson, "you're going to see a shift in tone from the Republican. Right now they're almost cocky that they're going to be victorious in the courts. I think they've been acting like cowboys because they have know they have a conservative majority if Prosser wins. Yesterday, though, you saw a very nervous [Senate GOP leader] Fitzgerald float the idea of putting the budget repair bill back in the budget and passing it again."

A common misconception about this election has been that a Kloppenburg win would reset the clock on the budget repair bill, because Democrats have successfully -- so far -- tied it up in court. Miller poured some cold water on that theory.

"Regardless of the outcome, the swearing in isn't till August 1," he said. "It's not likely that decisions coming to the Court regarding the budget repair bill will come after that." He was more optimistic about the influence Kloppenburg would have on future cases, and the possibility of a court without Prosser, who'd been a Republican legislator before joining the court."

posted by flex at 1:23 PM on April 6, 2011


Could be a while before J-Klo actually puts on the robe.

Yes, but Walker, the Fitzgeralds and the rest of the Tea Baggers across the country have been put on notice. No more talk about this BS phony populist movement funded by billionaires and a "silent majority" in this nation that are to the right of Attila the Hun proto-fascists, who want to upend every good thing this country has accomplished if it does meet the dictates of some bullshit corporatist agenda of what it means to be America and what an "American" is supposed to be according to their very narrow definitions.

Enough already with that Bullshit. There is no way to spin this, even if the Murdoch properties are already calling this a "stolen election" and bleating for a recount, the truth of the matter is this: Walker is now political poison. Prosser was supposed to be a shoo-in, as Kloppenburg was an unknown who came from a negligible position politically to winning this, when by rights she shouldn't have gotten more than , what 45% or 47% of the vote??

But not only that she went into the plus 50%. Let FOX, WSJ, MURDOCH, Rush, the WS GOP, the RNC, WALKER, the House GOP/TP-er's and the rest of them stick that in their pipe and smoke it.



Bonus: Another Palin pick bites the dust.
posted by Skygazer at 1:25 PM on April 6, 2011 [3 favorites]


link to facebook signup for Prosser victory party.

Have at it, boys.
posted by Ironmouth at 1:28 PM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


For reference, this is an even thinner margin than Al Franken won with, and that took two months of recounts and six months of court cases to sort out. Could be a while before J-Klo actually puts on the robe.

Think Franken was behind on election day. Coleman said he should concede for the good of the state.
posted by Ironmouth at 1:30 PM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


Though (maybe this has already been mentioned here? I lose track of what came from where) Walker is trying to claim that this election wasn't a referendum on his administration, and that even if it were, most of Kloppenburg's support came from Madison and Milwaukee (because of course we should care less about voters from Madison and Milwaukee).
posted by Vibrissa at 1:30 PM on April 6, 2011


Talking Points Memo? Walker blames Madison for Supreme Court election
posted by flex at 1:32 PM on April 6, 2011


Yeah, Franken was down by 700 votes in the preliminaries, down 215 in the first official results, up 225 after the recount, and up 312 after the court cases.
posted by echo target at 1:33 PM on April 6, 2011


Democrat Has Tiny Lead in Symbolic Wisconsin Election

Wait, since when is she a democrat? If the definition of "democrat" has changed to mean "non-republican" then I guess so but everything she says seems to imply that she is firmly non-partisan (as a I think a judge should be).
posted by VTX at 1:33 PM on April 6, 2011


Walker sounds like Dreyfus, he of the "Madison is 30 square miles surrounded by reality." Some folks would really prefer we just don't exist.

I personally have no immediate plans to stop.
posted by echo target at 1:36 PM on April 6, 2011 [3 favorites]


http://metatalk.metafilter.com/12764/Close-the-thread#345156

Baron Prosser, actually. David Prosser Freiherr von und zu Guttenberg.

posted by orthogonality at 1:39 PM on April 6, 2011


Walker blames Madison for Supreme Court election

Yeah, that's some horseshit that in a just world would get him punched in the mouth. Michele Bachmann and the other Tea Baggers spew the same venom - " well we expect the commies and socialists and fags and unions to feel that way but real America is with us."

Most intelligent people know that you can only poke so many times before you get poked back.
posted by Benny Andajetz at 1:46 PM on April 6, 2011 [3 favorites]


With the Franken recount, where did those extra votes come from? Is there a good recap of the recount?
posted by drezdn at 1:51 PM on April 6, 2011


drezdn - the Minneapolis Star-Tribune has a timeline of the race, recount, and trial.
posted by yomimono at 1:52 PM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


Pro-Prosser groups spent 2.4 million to Kloppenburg's 1.4 million. In baseball terms, this is Yankees vs. the Twins.
posted by drezdn at 2:01 PM on April 6, 2011


Essentially Walker throws half the state under the bus with his wining ill-informed divisional rhetoric. He is his own worst enemy, Mrs. Palin should divorce whatshisface and marry Walker. My god that would be a foot-in-mouth match made in heaven hell. sheer utter inexplicable grace of inanity.
posted by edgeways at 2:08 PM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


^whining
posted by edgeways at 2:09 PM on April 6, 2011


First mention of undervotes.
posted by drezdn at 2:15 PM on April 6, 2011



Here's a geography test. Can you find Madison ?
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 2:16 PM on April 6, 2011 [2 favorites]


That map gives me the howling fantods. Someone needs better shapefiles (and a lesson in preserving aspect ratios), stat. It looks like Wisconsin is melting.
posted by yomimono at 2:21 PM on April 6, 2011 [2 favorites]




"Pro-Prosser groups spent 2.4 million to Kloppenburg's 1.4 million. In baseball terms, this is Yankees vs. the Twins."

The Twinkies have an over $100 million payroll (the AL central is the only division with three over $100 million).

Though, having just done the math, the Yankees' payroll is about 1.8 times the Twins, and Pro-Prosser's about 1.7 times more than Kloppenburg.

Really, the less we mention the Brewers, the better.
posted by klangklangston at 2:30 PM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


That undervote article is interesting... the chart at the bottom talks about "select communities in the Milwaukee area", and when I look at the map Milwaukee is colored blue, yet only one of the communities listed actually has more votes for Kloppenburg than for Prosser, and in none of the cases will the undervotes, if they go entirely for the loser, change the actual outcome.

Not quite sure what all that means, but it sticks out like a sore thumb to me.
posted by hippybear at 2:34 PM on April 6, 2011


Milwaukee COUNTY is colored blue in the map. Some of the listed communities are in Milwaukee County (Fox Point, Greendale, Greenfield, Oak Creek, Shorewood, Wauwatosa, Whitefish Bay) and the rest are not.
posted by desjardins at 2:41 PM on April 6, 2011


Here are the rest of the communities with county names in caps. This is from memory, there may be one or two errors.

Brookfield - WAUKESHA
Caledonia - RACINE
Menomonee Falls - OZAUKEE
Muskego - WAUKESHA
Port Washington - WASHINGTON
Saukville - WAUKESHA
Sturtevant - RACINE
Sussex - WAUKESHA
posted by desjardins at 2:43 PM on April 6, 2011


Bleh, let's try this again. Geography fail.

Brookfield - WAUKESHA
Caledonia - RACINE
Menomonee Falls - WAUKESHA
Muskego - WAUKESHA
Port Washington - OZAUKEE
Saukville - OZAUKEE
Sturtevant - RACINE
Sussex - WAUKESHA
posted by desjardins at 2:45 PM on April 6, 2011


I find the article suspicious because it mostly only includes data from Republican strongholds.
posted by drezdn at 2:50 PM on April 6, 2011


from the undervotes links' comments:

I believe the Unions have forced politics into this election and we, the residents of WI, will suffer for it. When you take politics out there is no question which person is better Qualified for this job. To bad so many people have can not play by the rules unless their interests are served. The 14 senitors say they left to show Democracy in action...but what they really showed was What Anarchy Looks Like. Great lesson for the school kids!!!!!!!!

Holy shit! The yewnyuns are bringing politics into politics! They should just take the ass-kicking they got comin' to 'em. Yewnyuns got no place here in Wisconsin. Any history past ten years ago is just commie history!
posted by Benny Andajetz at 3:07 PM on April 6, 2011 [2 favorites]


Apparently in WI they teach Anarchy but not spelling or grammar.
posted by hippybear at 3:11 PM on April 6, 2011


If we're going to play the undervote game, we can play it with the Dane County results too. From a quick analysis of the data at the Dane County Clerk of Courts, 1716 Dane County voters submitted ballots that did not include a choice for State Supreme Court. Dane County overall voted 73% in favor of Kloppenburg and 26% for Prosser.
posted by yomimono at 3:18 PM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


Here's the math for Dane County undervotes, so you can check on your favorite ward.
posted by yomimono at 3:21 PM on April 6, 2011 [3 favorites]


If we're going to play the undervote game, we can play it with the Dane County results too. From a quick analysis of the data at the Dane County Clerk of Courts, 1716 Dane County voters submitted ballots that did not include a choice for State Supreme Court. Dane County overall voted 73% in favor of Kloppenburg and 26% for Prosser.

One would suspect that this would be a nail in Prosser's coffin.
posted by Ironmouth at 3:50 PM on April 6, 2011


I believe the Unions have forced politics into this election and we, the residents of WI, will suffer for it. When you take politics out there is no question which person is better Qualified for this job. To bad so many people have can not play by the rules unless their interests are served. The 14 senitors say they left to show Democracy in action...but what they really showed was What Anarchy Looks Like. Great lesson for the school kids!!!!!!!!

OMG! Politics in an election!!!!!!!!!! Horrific!!!!!
posted by Ironmouth at 3:51 PM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


Wow, my tiny town went 173-170 for Prosser. I'm amazed it was that close.
posted by altopower at 3:52 PM on April 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


It's my understanding that both candidates have the choice of requesting a recount of either the entire state or individual counties. Personally, I'd prefer both candidates to request the entire state rather than individual counties that support them.
posted by drezdn at 3:55 PM on April 6, 2011


It's my understanding that both candidates have the choice of requesting a recount of either the entire state or individual counties. Personally, I'd prefer both candidates to request the entire state rather than individual counties that support them.

I'd do the entire state if I was advising them. Note that a recount can also reduce the number of votes for a candidate. If you only recount your own areas, you may not catch an accounting error or other problem that would reduce your opponents tally.
posted by Ironmouth at 4:10 PM on April 6, 2011


Personally, I'd prefer both candidates to request the entire state rather than individual counties that support them.

I'd do the entire state if I was advising them.


If only you'd been advising Al Gore.
posted by hippybear at 4:16 PM on April 6, 2011 [3 favorites]


Thanks for the numbers, yomimono! Looks like Kloppenburg got 96.24%(!) of the vote in my ward. Best ratio in the city!
posted by echo target at 7:53 PM on April 6, 2011




Mike Newsome is a woman? Hmm.
posted by mkb at 6:14 AM on April 7, 2011


here's a pretty good interview with / story on Prof Cronon, the subject of the WI Repub Party's open records request
posted by g.i.r. at 8:06 AM on April 7, 2011


Article about voter turnout and the various recall efforts

The ending is excellent:

Not all recall efforts are finding success. Kurt Paul of Milwaukee, who is leading an effort to recall Sen. Lena Taylor, D-Milwaukee, said Wednesday he so far has only two signatures - his and one other. His 60-day window to gather signatures runs out April 25.

"It's pretty iffy," he said of his chances of reaching the required 13,498 signatures.

posted by Vibrissa at 8:31 AM on April 7, 2011 [4 favorites]


Deschane resigns from state job.
posted by Floydd at 11:33 AM on April 7, 2011


Deschane resigns from state job.

A drunk-- and a quitter!
posted by greasy_skillet at 11:46 AM on April 7, 2011 [3 favorites]




Deschane resigns from state job.

Man, that piece is just deliciously deadpan:

The elder Deschane acknowledged that he may have talked to Gilkes about getting a state job for Brian Deschane. But the father said he doesn't believe his group's financial support of the first-term Republican governor led to his son's state job or promotion, which provided a 26% pay raise.
posted by rtha at 12:40 PM on April 7, 2011 [1 favorite]


Now Prosser is supposedly up by 40 votes.
posted by drezdn at 1:17 PM on April 7, 2011


Now Prosser loses 113 votes in Grant County.

I think I'm going to have to avoid following this minute by minute.
posted by drezdn at 1:35 PM on April 7, 2011 [2 favorites]


The Conservative radio station WTMJ is reporting an additional 7k votes for Prosser in Waukesha County. If they really miscounted that badly, their clerk (a former Republican leader) should resign.
posted by drezdn at 2:37 PM on April 7, 2011


A little bit about Waukesha.
posted by drezdn at 2:39 PM on April 7, 2011


Yeah, that percentage in Waukesha seemed pretty crazy. As inordinately high a turn out with 73% going to Prosser.

Any idea what will happen with that? How can one person, a Republican operative, be allowed to keep the election data on her personal computer and have so much unilateral power?
posted by Skygazer at 2:49 PM on April 7, 2011


why is this news breaking on talk radio?
posted by greasy_skillet at 2:55 PM on April 7, 2011






Holy shit. Kathy Nikolaus, a partisan Republican, shuts down election reporting for several hours, then when she starts reporting again, Prosser is magically surging.

And then, days later, she finds out that Prosser got 7,000 more votes?

Fuck, that's just Iranian levels of fraud.
posted by orthogonality at 3:45 PM on April 7, 2011 [4 favorites]


I don't want come across as needlessly vindictive, but should that investigation they are running yield results, I seriously hope they bring her up on charges, and if found guilty, send her to prison.

I am so fucking sick of the corruption, and making examples of people who barely even try to hide it seems like a good place to start.
posted by quin at 3:54 PM on April 7, 2011


I'm suprised Nate Silver is not on this.
posted by Artw at 3:56 PM on April 7, 2011


He is, he says the missing numbers fit statistics.
posted by drezdn at 3:57 PM on April 7, 2011




At the very least, Kathy Nickolaus should resign.
posted by drezdn at 3:58 PM on April 7, 2011


Nickolaus ignored results of audit.
posted by drezdn at 4:08 PM on April 7, 2011


quin, does Waukesha County use paper ballots?
posted by drezdn at 4:10 PM on April 7, 2011


drezdn: Yes. There have been a few electronic touch screens around in recent years, but I haven't seen them in at least the last 2 elections.
posted by Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug at 4:50 PM on April 7, 2011


Sounds like someone else watched Hacking Democracy, only used it as a how-to guide rather than an exposé.
posted by hippybear at 4:56 PM on April 7, 2011


Yeah, in New Berlin we used this optical scantron type ballot. So there should be a paper trail for at least some of the county.
posted by quin at 4:56 PM on April 7, 2011


"I'm the Democratic vice chair of Waukesha County, so I'm not going to stand here and tell you something that's not true," Kitzinger said.
posted by Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug at 4:59 PM on April 7, 2011


So wait, this article says: "Catching the errors boosted the turnout in Waukesha County to 47% from the previously reported 42%."

And this one says: "On Tuesday, shockingly-large turnout suddenly emerged from Waukesha County, which did not comport with either the results of previous spring elections, or even internal estimates from city officials mid-day. In fact, a Waukesha City Deputy Clerk said at 1:18pm that turnout was very typical, predicting somewhere between 20 to 25 percent. As Tuesday night wore on, reporting in Waukesha County stopped altogether for hours, leaving observers to wonder what was going on. Then suddenly, results suggesting massive turnout started to pour in rapidly with Prosser adding dramatically to his total by a 73-27 percent margin.

One Wisconsin Now estimates put overall turnout near 38 percent, a wild outlier to historical data and the earlier mid-day estimation of Waukesha’s own officials. In April 2009, turnout was 20 percent; April 2008, turnout was 22 percent and in April 2007, turnout was 24 percent. All of these elections had hotly-contested Supreme Court races as well.
"

But Nate Silver says: "So I don't think there's any conspiracy here ... Waukesha's vote total had been slightly lower than you might expect. Before missing votes were found, Waukesha's turnout had been 7.5% of WI's. Versus 7.8% in Pres '08, 8.7% in Gov '10, 8.7% in Feb. election."

Something's not adding up here. Was it a crazy high turnout, or a lower turnout than expected?
Also, yeah, it all smells conveniently hinky as it is.
posted by flex at 5:25 PM on April 7, 2011


Face it kiddos - you are being played by people who 'know the rules' and 'control the game board'.

Start figuring out how to change the rules of the game so that the citizen actions can be a wildcard VS controlled and stoppable via appointed people.

Figure out how to break the back of the 2 party system of 'vote for the lesser of 2 evils'. Get what appears to be "hinky" in front of a Grand Jury and let the Grand Jury figure out if the hinkey is criminal.
posted by rough ashlar at 6:29 PM on April 12, 2011


dude, I think everyone has got your message, the patronizing can stop now.
posted by edgeways at 8:07 PM on April 12, 2011


Just stepping in to say that I heard from a well-placed source that the dems are springing 3 more petitions next week. They have enough signatures to trigger recalls against all 8. A total of 3 dems will be challenged too.
posted by Ironmouth at 9:00 AM on April 22, 2011


I'd be shocked but impressed if they got all 8 republicans. Grothman's district is so red the people there think Reagan was a liberal.
posted by drezdn at 9:24 AM on April 22, 2011


yeah, odds are low that all eight will be actually recalled, but one hopes that triggering recall elections in all eight will sober-up the ones remaining after the elections (and lord willing they will be in a minority)
posted by edgeways at 10:01 AM on April 25, 2011


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