Two recall races left to go in Wisconsin and fleebaggers are on the firing line in both. Results should start trickling in shortly after 9 p.m. ET; here’s the Journal-Sentinel’s page so that you can track the numbers as they come in. If you missed Steve Eggleston’s election preview this morning, read it now. My sense from his post and others around the ‘sphere is that the 22nd District race between Wirch and Steitz is likely a lost cause for Republicans. The 12th District, which is a bit redder than the typical fleebagger stronghold, might be a pick-up. The MacIver Institute has a county-by-county breakdown of how well Holperin and Simac need to do in each in order to win. According to one district-wide poll, Holperin leads by two thin points.
Whatever happens tonight, the flurry of recall elections may have saved Scott Walker’s job. According to PPP’s new poll of Wisconsin, 50 percent now oppose recalling him compared to 47 percent who support the idea; a few months ago those numbers were reversed even though Walker’s approval rating is still underwater. Could be that voters simply have recall fatigue by now, or maybe this is a leading indicator that his approval is rebounding as the public warms up to the positive effects of the new collective bargaining law. Either way, I’ll give you this from Walter Russell Mead to chew on while we wait for results:
To the extent that they think about it — as opposed to simply letting their little lights artlessly shine — liberal journalists seem to think that acting like cheerleaders strengthens their team. It doesn’t. That more conservative candidates and causes face hostile media scrutiny that liberal lions don’t makes the conservatives tougher and more battle tested. It can ground their political calculations more securely in reality; if there are any gaping flaws in conservative arguments, programs or personnel, they can be reasonably sure that a vigilant mainstream media will point them out in great and loving detail…
Over and over again in modern American politics, liberals have developed “frames” and strategies for key issues that they think will shift the debate their way. Over and over again the echo chamber of the liberal press resounds with praises of the new approach. And over and over again liberals “unexpectedly” get sucker punched by conservative counter attacks a more critical press would have forecast as both inevitable and deadly.
Sometimes one wonders: is the liberal press secretly taking the Koch brothers’ money?
Stand by for updates.
Update: As I write this, with more than half the votes counted in both districts, Wirch leads by 10 and Holperin by eight. The conservative MacIver Institute is all but ready to call both races. I wonder if things would have been different had Democrats retaken the senate last week, thus raising the stakes tonight.
Update: Wirch is an easy winner as of 10:45 p.m. ET. Holperin’s lead has narrowed to six points with 71 percent of precincts reporting, but I’m expecting he’ll hold on.
Update: The Journal-Sentinel calls it for Holperin. Drat.