Wis. Election Kicks Off A Summer Of Politics

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Republicans are breathing easier following Tuesday’s $5 million Wisconsin Senate recall race.

The Republican incumbent, Sheila Harsdorf, held on to her seat in a decisive fashion. Republicans ended up winning four of six seats holding onto control in the Wisconsin Senate.

The recall effort was being watched closely across the country as a test of voter support for a conservative Republican agenda.

And with that, Wisconsin shot in the arm to Republicans regionally and nationally, comes the announcement Wednesday that President Barack Obama will be in southern Minnesota next week.

The Obama visit will be part of a three-state bus tour that the White House says is part of a job promotion effort. The bus tour will go through southern Minnesota, Iowa and Illinois.

Republicans are protesting that the trip is a campaign swing for the President at a time when Republicans are flexing their muscle over their Wisconsin victory.

On Wednesday, at State Sen. Sheila Harsdorf’s campaign headquarters, workers were hauling away boxes from a Republican win that resounded across the country.

Harsdorf’s spokesman said this was a great win for Republicans.

“It was really a referendum on do we want Wisconsin to be spending, keep our spending in check and to make the decisions that are going to be better for the state’s economy and job growth,” Nathan Duerkop said.

The Democrats defeat means that the Republican Revolution that toppled the Democratic establishment in Madison and lead to massive protests earlier this year is here to stay. And for Republicans across the country its a victory to savor heading into 2012.

“It suggests support for a Republican agenda in Wisconsin and maybe in broad sections of the United States,” Prof. David Schultz of Hamline University said.

The Wisconsin Republican victories are a reminder that the upper Midwest is one of the strongest areas of the country for the Tea Party, whose leader in congress is, of course, Minnesota Congresswoman and presidential candidate Michele Bachmann.

President Obama, fresh off the bruising debt ceiling debate, begins the bus tour next week in southern Minnesota before going onto Iowa and Illinois.

Jobs will be the theme but the campaign-style swing is a reminder that the Presidents’ battle for reelection is already under way.

“Minnesota is a state that has been considered to be in play in the past. I think he is starting to worry about trying to shore up his base and shore up a state that has to definitely be on his side,” Schultz said. “He can’t worry about 2012.”

The White House has not announced the details of the trip — we don’t know where in Minnesota or exactly when next week the President will begin this bus tour.

The President’s approval in Minnesota is at 52 percent — about 10 points higher than it is in the rest of the country, so he is hoping for some favorable crowds.

More from Esme Murphy
  • Larry

    Yes it is a huge victory. According to democrats, everyone in Wisconsin was against the Walker agenda, therefore, all the republicans should have been crushed. It should have been a democratic landslide. But that was not the case.

    4 republicans won hands down. One republican lost by a small margin, but he had baggage, he was in a messy divorce.

    The the seat that was lost, the democrat did win.

    If you think the dems won, then today the Wisconsin senate should be ruled by democrats, that is not the case. The people have spoken and republicans have won, they are still in power, and will stay in power.

  • Pat

    The Democrat machine threw everything they had at the Republican candidates.

    And they failed.

  • Lynn

    It’s interesting that channel 11 reported that the election left the republicans with only 1 seat majority in the state senate, that Gov. Walker made a statement about working with all the legislators – not just the repulicans- and that the two seats that were won by the democrats were in traditional republican districts. What about the different slant of the same facts by two stations? I feel WCCO has been bought out by corporate politics, even engaging in those wonderful “news” reports about a specific business and how wonderful it is. I was a loyal ‘CCO watcher for decades, seldom tune in now.

  • Koch Bros.' Dirty Money = Dirty Politics

    This says a lot about the influence money can have on an election. It was reported that as much as 10 or 11 times the normal amount of money spent on the state races was spent in a much shorter period of time than a normal election season.

  • truth hurts

    I’m having a tough reading this story…

    “The Democrats defeat means that the Republican Revolution that toppled the Democratic establishment in Madison and lead to massive protests earlier this year is here to stay. And for Republicans across the country its a victory to savor heading into 2012.”

    Esme Murphy what do you mean?

    Protests will continue in Madison?

    There’s a Republican Revolution in Wisconsin?

    Seems to me, people just voted in a recall election no burning cars, looting or violence.

  • Pavel

    Confu to say the least. Let’s see the numbers.

  • Pavel

    Confusing to say the least. Let’s see the numbers. (Computer acting up.)

  • Unions and Dirty Money = Dirty Politics

    all the money flowed in from the unions, most noticably the teachers unions. But don’t let facts confuse your hatred or successful people.

  • Citizen

    Wisconsin voters know not what they do. I ask all posters on this page to take a look at the strongest economies in the world that are thriving after having been poor and marginalized in the early 1900s. Scandinavia now enjoys the highest standard of living in the world, the most educated workforce, and some of the lowest unemployment rates in Europe. A quick quiz for all you conservatives. Why is that happening? Because the Scandinavian countries enjoy the most egalitarian capitalist economies on earth. They have nearly UNIVERSAL UNIONS, high minimum wages, and a strong welfare state. They are also open trade economies. Business there is free to hire, fire, change lines of business, and otherwise conduct itself as it wishes, but the businesses ARE NOT FREE TO CUT WAGES. If, as a business you cannot compete under these rules, and earn a profit, that’s too bad for the business. This effectively disciplines business to keep productivity high and technologically advanced and drives out the marginal businesses who would exploit workers. And now the Scandinavian countries enjoy one of the highest standards of living in the world and provide the population with enough resources to live on.

    • Josh

      Forgetting the fact that they are roughly 1/10th the size of the US, dont have a population that pops out kids every 9 months to stay on welfare and endless wars. And you say something quite interesting “Business there is free to hire, fire, change lines of business, and otherwise conduct itself as it wishes” Maybe if we stopped over-regulating business here our economy would grow.

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