Democrats to try more recalls of Wisconsin GOP politicians

CREATED Oct 13, 2011

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MADISON- Democrats will likely launch recall efforts against more Republican state senators at the same time as a push to remove Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker from office, a spokesman for the Democratic Party said Thursday.

State party spokesman Graeme Zielinski said it was "highly likely" that some of the 17 Republicans who make up a majority of the Senate will be targeted for recall. He would not say who or how many would specifically be targeted.

Democrats are trying to wrest control of the Senate away from Republicans, who hold a 17-16 majority following recall votes this summer in which Democrats picked up two seats. Democrats see an opportunity to win the majority through recalls before new legislative boundaries drawn by Republicans take effect for the 2012 election.

Walker and other Republicans are under fire in Wisconsin for enacting a new law that essentially takes away all collective bargaining rights from public workers.

Not to be outdone, Republicans are also considering recall campaigns against Democratic senators.

"At this point, all options are on the table," said Dan Romportl, the head of the Committee to Elect a Republican Senate. "We are waiting to see what transpires on the Democrat side and then we will go from there."

Democrats announced earlier this week that they would launch a petition drive Nov. 15 to force a recall of Walker next year. Recalls of state senators would likely proceed at the same time, Zielinski said.

While it takes more than 540,000 signatures to force a recall vote for the governor, the bar for senators is between about 15,000 and 20,000 depending on their individual district.