UPDATE: Kloppenburg Wins WI Supreme Court Election

UPDATE 3 PM EST: All votes have been gathered from all precincts, and Kloppenberg has won... by a

mere 204 votes

. It's a slim margin, but it's still a win, and a recount is unlikely to change the result.


Meanwhile, some progressive organizations have already started raising funds to keep progressive ideas in the consciousness and on the television, certain that the GOP will now come even harder against recall efforts.

But, as AlterNet's Adele Stan points out, this news means the recall chances are looking good:

With a turnout of more than 1.4 million voters, this Supreme Court race is seen as reflective of a backlash against the antics of Wisconsin Republicans who, through trickery, bullying and sleight-of-hand, rammed through a bill in the state legislature that would repeal the collective bargaining rights of state employees, and gut the public health-care program for the poor. The bill was shepherded by Gov. Scott Walker, who was elected in 2010 with the support of Charles and David Koch, and the latter's front group, Americans For Prosperity.

Read the rest of her piece here.

UPDATE 12:35 EST: The latest report from AP has Kloppenberg leading by 311, now, with 99 percent of precincts reporting. That's just .02 percent of the vote. A request for a recount cannot be fulfilled until April 20 -- five days after all the counties' votes have been canvassed.

UPDATE: The AP reportsthat Kloppenberg has a tiny, tiny lead -- by just 447 votes among 1.5 million cast -- but it's a margin so slim a recount is definitely in the cards.

The Wisconsin Supreme Court race -- upon which future union cases hinge -- is likely headed for a recount, with a relatively tiny number of votes separating incumbent/GOP favorite Justice David Prosser and union-backed Democrat JoAnne Kloppenberg. The JS Online:

As of 7:35 this morning [Central Time], the Associated Press had results for all but 24 of the state's 3,630 precincts and Prosser's overnight lead had grown slightly from fewer than 600 votes to 835 votes.

That close margin had political insiders from both sides talking about the possibility of a recount, which Wisconsin has avoided in statewide races in recent decades. Any recount could be followed by lawsuits - litigation that potentially would be decided by the high court.

The election has been widely characterized as a referendum on Scott Walker's agenda -- particularly since Prosser took great pains to align himself with the beleaguered Governor, and was handed over one million dollars to campaign by the union-busting, money-flooding Koch Brothers.

Last night, as it became clear the election was devastatingly close, representatives from both sides made cautious statements:

At 1:12 a.m., Kloppenburg came out to meet a cheering crowd at the Edgewater Hotel in downtown Madison.

"It's not over and we are still hopeful," she said. "Let's get a good night's sleep and see what tomorrow brings."

At the Seven Seas Restaurant in Hartland, Prosser told a handful of supporters at 1:40 a.m., "There is little doubt there is going to be a recount in this race."

"I had a rip-roaring victory speech prepared," Prosser said. "I also had a concession speech." What he did not have was a speech for an impasse.

The ballots were guarded by police overnight at the behest of a GOP Milwaukee election commissioner. Read more here, and keep AlterNet locked for the latest updates.

AlterNet / By Julianne Escobedo Shepherd

Posted at April 6, 2011, 3:47am

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