Left gets punked in WI judicial election

Posted on April 7, 2011


After all the spectacle and ugliness surrounding the Wisconsin collective bargaining battle, the left transferred their rage over being stymied by Gov. Scott Walker toward a judicial election over a spot on the Wisconsin Supreme Court. Incumbent David Prosser, who leans conservative, was being challenged by JoAnne Kloppenburg, the Democrats’ choice. The stakes are control of the Wisconsin Supreme Court, which currently has a 5-4 balance in favor of conservatives.

Needless to say, the campaign got ugly, including the Kloppenburg campaign running commercials suggesting Prosser favored child molesters over their victims – a charge so heinously spurious that the victim in the case in question wanted the ad pulled. The unions, it was said, were coming out in force as all of Wisconsin was turning out in anger over Walker/Mubarak/Hitler’s passage of public employee union reform.

On Tuesday, they voted in the Badger state. For all the rhetoric, the initial votes indicated an insanely close race, with Kloppenburg showing a 204-vote lead Tuesday night. Kloppenburg and the left declared victory, and concerned media pundits dissected what a razor-thin victory in a statewide judicial election meant for the GOP across the nation.

Now today comes the most delicious part – the votes of one town were left out of the initial preliminary vote totals due to a computer error. These totals aren’t the official ones that are ultimately certified, but the ones used by the media to call victory for one side or the other. The discrepancy swung 7,500 votes to Prosser’s side, giving him a clear lead that is seemingly outside of the realm of fraud.

Of course there are now cries of shenanigans since the local election official is a Republican. The only snag is that the Democrat on the Waukesha election board, Ramona Kitzinger, said the numbers jive, and to her credit, said she was “not going to stand here and tell you something that’s not true.”

There’s no doubt this saga isn’t over, but right now the irony is just too thick after watching the jeers of self-righteous victory turn into disbelieving stammerings of shocked defeat. I’m sure the courts are going to get involved, but even if Kloppenburg had still won by a measly 204 votes, I think it still tells us something about the mood of the electorate.

After the unions were galvanized into voter organization, after tons of money was poured into the race to ensure victory, after scores of polls were spun to show the left would be righteously triumphant against an overreaching and evil GOP regime – the best case scenario is a razor-thin squeaker of a win. And the actuality is a loss. What that tells me is that too often polls push the narrative instead of the other way around, and that the vaunted anger of the unionized left isn’t something to be feared, even in Wisconsin.

Posted in: News, Politics