Monday, January 2, 2012

Wisconsin Is Getting Ready To Make History In 2012

Ex Gov. Lynn Frazier
The history of recall referendum in the United States is a fairly slim one - however in 2011 Wisconsin helped to bulk out it's portfolio.

Recalls are difficult to trigger and there have been far more failed attempts than successful ones - most die in the early days and never even really get off the ground - like the two attempts Wisconsin Republicans made against Jim Doyle.

Eighteen states have constitutional provisions allowing for recalls of state officials and a nineteenth, Illinois, allows for a recall of their Governor only. Recalls date back historically to the ancient Greeks and are found in the constitutions of a number of other countries.

Only two U.S. Governors have ever successfully been recalled in American history: Lynn Frazier of North Dakota in 1921 and Gray Davis of California in 2003.

In the California recall, citizens needed to collect a minimum 900,000 signatures - a hefty sum - Cali required 12% of the votes cast in the previous election and citizens had five months of California weather to complete it.

Compared to Wisconsin's 60 days and 25% of votes cast, it sounds like a vacation to the Siren.

Both Frazier and Davis were liberals removed by far more conservative voters - an interesting factoid for the mouth-breathing pickup drivers who call Wisconsin recallers cry babies...among other things.

While Scott Walker uses the inevitability of the recall to raise big bucks, others like Robin Vos mewl that recalls should be used only in cases of malfeasance in office.

Since Vos has a staff of reasonably bright people and access to the highest priced lawyers in Wisconsin they might want to tell him that is what Wisconsin impeachment proceedings are for. Duh.

The Wisconsin recall provision was written specifically for the kind of situation they are using it for now...and it looks like they are going to succeed.

Critics also point out that the Wisconsin recall is too easy - an observation that makes volunteers laugh. Surely if it was that easy, Scott Walker supporters could have gone out and easily gotten a half-million people to sign a pledge to support him...but they didn't.

They couldn't even get 18,000 people to "like" the Facebook page.