Given that the “Recall Walker” effort reached 300,000 signatures in just 12 days, it would have been far more surprising if Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s opponents didn’t manage to collect enough signatures to go forward with the election. Still, 1 million signatures is nearly twice the number needed to trigger an actual election — and Wisconsin Democrats are happy to hammer home that fact to anyone still following the story of their sad, insistent effort to undo what Walker promised to do from Day 1:
More than a million people have signed a petition to recall Wisconsin’s governor, the state’s Democratic Party said Tuesday.
That’s nearly twice the 540,208 signatures required to seek a recall of first-term Republican Gov. Scott Walker, who drew the ire of labor unions and public school teachers after he stripped public employees of their collective bargaining rights.
State Democratic Party officials said they would submit the signatures by close of business Tuesday. The officials also said they would turn in more than the required number of signatures needed for recall elections for the state’s Republican lieutenant governor and three state senators. …
“I think it’s going to be a very impressive number that we hand in, beyond any challenge that this election is going to happen,” Wisconsin Democratic Party Chairman Mike Tate told CNN affiliate WTMJ Monday.
No doubt activists were also emboldened by the knowledge that virtually any signature at all will be accepted by the Wisconsin petition board provided that the signature is accompanied by a valid Wisconsin address.
Walker himself isn’t worried, though, so I won’t be, either. He was quoted by WTMJ as saying, “The optimist in me looks at that and says: The overwhelming majority of the people in the state chose not to sign that, and I earned the trust of the majority the last time. My hope is I will earn their trust again.”
He’s right: Not only did the vast majority of Wisconsinites choose not to sign the petition, but, as I’ve pointed out before, a signature to allow a recall effort to go forward is very different than a vote to actually recall an elected official. It takes very little effort to an answer your front door and sign a petition that commits you to very little; it takes considerably more effort to go to the polls at an odd time to vote against a governor you’d have the chance to vote against in the next upcoming ordinary election anyway.
At this point, Wisconsin Democrats’ desperation to prove a point makes even less sense than it ever did.