Last week, Wisconsin Democrats were on offense, winning two races against Republican state senators in a historic slate of recall elections. Yesterday, however, the situation was reversed, with Democrats defending two of their lawmakers from GOP attempts at recall. The state senators in question – Robert Wirch and Jim Holperin – were among the 14 state senators who left Wisconsin in an attempt to stop passage of Governor Scott Walker’s anti-union measure earlier this year.
Thanks to high turnout and mobilization by Democratic activists, both incumbents defeated their conservative opponents. This leaves the composition of the Wisconsin state senate at 17 Republicans to 16 Democrats – unchanged from where it was after last week’s recall elections, when Democrats captured two Republican state senate seats. It’s unclear whether this will have an effect on public policy in the state, but it does serve to boost Wisconsin progresives. According to USA Today, Wisconsin Democratic leaders are “moving ahead” with their plans to mount a recall effort against Governor Walker.