Red, white and blue

Walker wins recall election

CREATED Jun 5, 2012 - UPDATED: Jun 5, 2012

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  • Photo: Walker supporters learn from TODAY'S TMJ4 that Walker wins recall election

  • Photo: Jessica Hubrich

  • Photo: Greg Best

  • Photo: Greg Best

  • Photo: in New Berlin

  • Photo: Nick Montes

  • Photo: Rachael Glaszcz

  • Photo: Nick Montes

  • Photo: Nick Montes

  • Photo: in Waukesha

  • Photo: Helen Kosterman

  • Voting in Greendale. | Photo: Tom Murray

  • Photo: Jon Byman

  • Photo: TODAY'S TMJ4's Cody Holyoke. Voting line at Franklin police station. Image by Photo: TODAY'S TMJ4's Cody Holyoke

  • Photo: TODAY'S TMJ4's Butch Jorgenson at Waukesha City Hall Image by Photo: TODAY'S TMJ4's Butch Jorgenson at Waukesha City Hall

  • Photo: Butch Jorgenson. Long lines at Waukesha City Hall.

  • Photo: Butch Jorgenson. Long lines at Waukesha City Hall. Image by Photo: Butch Jorgenson.

  • Photo: Governor Walker celebration headquarters

Click here for complete election results

Wednesday, 4:58 a.m.

Not only did you, the Southeastern Wisconsin viewer, find out from TODAY'S TMJ4 that Gov. Walker kept his job, so did the people attending the Scott Walker rally in Waukesha.

Click here for more on how TODAY'S TMJ4 broke the news to Walker supporters that their candidate won.

10:27 p.m.
Governor Walker thanked God, family and Wisconsin voters for help in recall during victory speech.   Walker says voters want leaders who `stand up and make tough decisions.'  Walker spoke late Tuesday to a crowd of supporters at his campaign headquarters in Waukesha. During his remarks, the crowd erupted into chants of "Thank you, Scott!"

10:22 p.m.

The Associated Press reports Democratic Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett concedes loss to Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker.  Barrett addressed supporters in Milwaukee and thanked them for their dedication to his campaign and to the petitions that triggered the recall.

9:39 p.m.

On multiple media outlets declaring Walker the winner, "way too premature," said Barrett's spokesperson Phil Walczak.

9:38 p.m.

The Associated Press reports that Mitt Romney says the failed attempt to recall Wisconsin's Republican governor shows that voters want to cut spending and the results, in his words, "echo beyond the borders of Wisconsin."

9:35 p.m.

Gov. Scott Walker tells The Associated Press win "feels good," wants to bring people together.

9:29 p.m.

Wisconsin Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch survives recall election, defeats Democratic union leader.

9:25 p.m.

From the official Twitter account of Tom Barrett: Here is a special graphic we made as a thank you to all of our supporters who got out the vote today:

9:17 p.m.

From the Associated Press: Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has survived a recall election, defeating the Democratic mayor of Milwaukee to keep the state's top political job.  Walker becomes the first governor in American history to stay in office after a recall challenge.

9:09 p.m.

TODAY'S TMJ4's Annie Scholz reports that Tom Barrett is not conceding the election just yet.  They also report that Barrett is watching the results at his home Tuesday evening.

9:06 p.m.

BREAKING AP: Republican Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker survives recall election, defeats Democrat Tom Barrett

9:02 p.m.

Via Twitter: ABC News projects Gov. Scott Walker will win #wirecall challenge, based on analysis of vote so far

8:52 p.m.

Via Twitter: NBC News projects that Governor Scott Walker wins the #WisconsinRecall

8:14 p.m.

Rev. Jesse Jackson arrives at Barrett election party.

8:00 p.m.

Polls close in Wisconsin. Click here for election results.  The Associated Press reports the state Government Accountability Board reported long lines and heavy turnout throughout the day Tuesday as Republican Gov. Scott Walker and four other GOP officeholders face recall challengers.

Walker faces a rematch with Democratic Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, whom he beat in 2010 by nearly six percentage points. The board expects up to 65 percent of Wisconsin's eligible voters to turn out.

7:02 p.m.

The Journal Sentinel reports that some Milwaukee polling stations are running out of ballots.

6:48 p.m

The Journal Sentinel reports that Kathy Nickolaus appears in charge of Waukesha County's election.

6:35 p.m

Waukesha County Executive Dan Vrakas told Newsradio 620 WTMJ that clerk Kathy Nickolaus is not in charge of their election reporting.

6:15 p.m

Tom Murray is monitoring Republican state Senator Van Wanggaard's campaign and Lacey Crisp is tracking John Lehman's campaign -- the Democratic opponent in the Van Wanggaard race.

6:01 p.m.

TODAY'S TMJ4's Charles Benson is following the Governor Walker campaign.  Annie Scholz is with the Tom Barrett campaign.  

5:56 p.m

TODAY'S TMJ4's Tom Murray reports that the City of Racine is low on ballots and they are requesting some extra ballots from nearby communities.

5:33 p.m.

New updates from our TODAY'S TMJ4 viewers and 620WTMJ listeners on Facebook and e-mailed to our news team.

-Nancy. "No photo as there was no line at 1:40pm at City Hall in South Milwaukee. In and out in just a few minutes."
-Sarah: "Voter #1168 in West Bend wait time 15 min."
-Janel: "My husband was the 405th(I believe) voter on southside of Milwaukee at 9:30 this morning!"
-Alison: "Waited well over an hour this morning in, Mukwonago-the lines started at 0630-it was SLOW!"
-Patty: "Not long - I was 206 at 9:45 am compared to 45 at same time in Primary."

5:01 p.m.

TODAY'S TMJ4's Jermont Terry has a latest look at the Waukesha polls.  Cody Holyoke is reporting very high voter turnout in Franklin.  Annie Scholz is covering the very latest in the Tom Barrett campaign and Charles Benson is following the latest surrounding Governor Walker.  All of their respective stories can be found under the Associated Videos link.

4:01 p.m.

Volunteers told TODAY'S TMJ4's Cody Holyoke they expect turnout in Franklin to meet or exceed the figures for the presidential election four years ago.

3:35 p.m.

Click on the video link to see TODAY'S TMJ4's Jermont Terry's report from Waukesha County polls.

3:30 p.m.

TODAY'S TMJ4's Keller Russell is covering social media's reaction nationwide to the Wisconsin recall election.  President Obama sent out this tweet.  "It's election day in Wisconsin tomorrow, and I'm standing by Tom Barrett. He'd make an outstanding governor."

Former presidential candidate Newt Gingrich said: "If you're from Wisconsin make sure to go vote today for Scott Walker--time to let one of our best governors get back to governing."

Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee tweets: "Scott Walker is a fiscal and social conservative. He deserves our support.  Wisconsin- please vote for Scott Walker today!"

Debbie Wasserman Schultz -- the chair of the Democratic National Committee -- also writes "Wisconsin you can make history in today's recall."

3:15 p.m.

New updates from our TODAY'S TMJ4 viewers and 620WTMJ listeners on Facebook and e-mailed to our news team.

-Sharon: "Just returned from voting in Waukesha County.  I've never seen so many voters, even for presidential elections!  There were people directing traffic and the line was out the door!"
-Mike: "Voted in West Bend at City Hall at approximately 3:15. Less than 10 in line with a total wait time of less than 5 minutes."
-Kiki: "In and out n Kenosha."
-Linda: "Voted in Sheboygan at 111am and waited 40 minutes. That is a first and a good indication of huge voter turn out..."
-Butch: "Went to vote 12:00 in Kohler, I walked in voted and walk out. Only took 3 min. to vote."
-Stephanie: "Union Grove had police directing traffic it was so full of people and cars."

2:10 p.m.

The Associated Press reports Governor Scott Walker says voting day in the recall election almost comes as a relief.  After Walker cast his ballot this morning in the Milwaukee suburb of Wauwatosa, the Republican governor said he thinks most people are happy to have the election over and "want to have their TVs back" following weeks of political ads.

1:40 p.m.

Cambridge News & Deerfield Independent Facebook Page: 


"If you were turned away from the polls today - not allowed to register or vote because of lack of ID - please go BACK! The Election Officials finally read the rules, and now recognize that they turned people away in error."

12:24 p.m.
TODAY'S TMJ4's Nick Montes talked to what we believe to be the first man in line at any polling site in Southeastern Wisconsin, Dennis Bottkol.  He told us of an experience that many have gone through in this turbulent political climate.

"I've lost friends over this, unfortunately.  Family members who fight," said Dennis.

To another voter, the election was not just a chance to voice their opinion on things, but teach their children about the opportunity to vote.

"It's a great lesson in democracy.  We can teach about it in a book, but it's so much better to do it," explained Naomi Lara, who took her kids with her when she voted.

12:10 p.m.
New updates from our TODAY'S TMJ4 viewers and 620WTMJ listeners on Facebook and e-mailed to our news team.
- Kris: West Bend Library voted #480, 45 minute line, but everyone trying hard not to talk about why we are there to keep things peaceful.
- Robin: "Williams Bay, a town of 2,610 people had 10% of their population already spoken for by 8am; I was number 260. There were at least another 30 people in line behind me and cars streaming into the already full parking lot of Village Hall. Looks like Williams Bay is very engaged"
- Melissa: #914 in Mayville. I was in and out in 5 minutes.
- Lee: "No lines at Waukesha City Hall right now! Just got thru. "
- Kevin: Walked straight through at 8:30 in Caledonia at Prince of Peace on 6 Mile. All ran smooth, #270.

11:50 a.m.

From City of Delafield twitter feed: @cityofdelafield.

@wtmj4news City of Delafield voters went to Christ the King church. We were number 2050 at 11:50 am. Outpacing the presidential pace.

11:14 a.m.
"I think most voters in the state want to have all the attack ads off.  They want to have their TV's back.  They want to have their lives back." - Scott Walker, after voting today.

"Obviously, the lines are very, very long.  It's a very encouraging sign.  People are engaged." - Tom Barrett, after voting today.

10:41 a.m.
More reports from our TODAY'S TMJ4 viewers and 620WTMJ listeners on Facebook:
- Ron: "Greenfield Ward #6 no wait at 7.30am"
- Paul: "Racine County had over 540 people already at one polling location."
- Diane: "At 9 a.m. #157 at our polling place. Never been that high a number that early in the voting."
- Trish: "‎#239 at 8:30a in West Bend. Lines were longer than the last 3 times i voted."
- Jill "I was #828 in Oak Creek at 9:20. Only took a few minutes. I asked for two stickers to represent my 2010 Vote and my Vote today." - Leann: "I vote at Watertown High School in Watertown. I got there around 7am and didn't get out until 7:20."
- Anne-Marie: "Long lines, but respectful people in Oconomowoc at the library. Voter number 217 at just after 9am"
- Noelle: "Voted at the Water Tower on 6th street the lines were quick moving but there is basically no parking"
- Jamie: "Northwest Milwaukee Ward 11- No line #160 at 900. Since my kids are out of school for the summer I brought them with to show them what it was like to vote. My 8 year old daughter said, "Mommy, someone may have died for girls to be able to vote. When I'm 18 I'm going to vote just like you."

10:16 a.m.
Reid Magney of the Government Accountability Board tells us that nearly three quarters of eligible voters in Wisconsin would have to vote in order to achieve a record turnout for an election in Wisconsin.

Click here for more on this story.

10:15 a.m.
We've added TODAY'S TMJ4 raw video of Gov. Walker and Mayor Barrett voting today in (respectively) Wauwatosa and Milwaukee.  Barrett first on the video, Walker second.

We also had their comments to the press as they voted, as recorded by TODAY'S TMJ4, in their entirety.  (Walker chose to speak longer than Barrett.)

Click on the video link to see the raw video.

10:08 a.m.
From TODAY'S TMJ4's Shelley Walcott: "Wow. HUGE voter turnout in Oak Creek. Woman just told me she was #822 at my daughter's school at 8:30 this morning! Unreal."

10:01 a.m.
In Milwaukee, "there are lines at all of our polling sites" said Milwaukee Election Commissioner Sue Edman.

"If it continues as we think it will, it is going to be very, very high...from what I'm hearing, the wait is anywhere between 20 and 30 minutes."

It was the same across the state, including Waukesha County.

"We're hearing reports of strong voter turnout.  I got a report out of Oconomowoc, it took an hour to get through the line at 7:15 a.m." said the Government Accountability Board's Reid Magney.

Click here for more about the huge turnout across Southeastern Wisconsin.

9:38 a.m.
Our news partners at report that a group has asked Waukesha County Executive Dan Vrakas to make sure County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus has been banned from taking part in working today's elections.

Click here to read more of their story.

9:16 a.m.
As told to us by Newsradio 620 WTMJ talk show host Andy Smith:

"In Brookfield, my wife voted on her way to work. So many people that the parking lot was full, the line to get into the polls stretched around the building, and the line was being cued to keep the number of people inside from exceeding the building's safe fire capacity. She called to say that in fifteen years, voter turnout has never been this heavy."

9:02 a.m.
More updates from 620WTMJ listeners and TODAY'S TMJ4 viewers on Facebook:
- Jerry: "#93 @ 7:25 in Cudahy, busy but considering that 3 of the 5 wards for the city were at one polling place."
- Gina: "#268 in Germantown. Lines were really not that bad. In and out in 15 minutes."
- Jennifer: "#123 at Oconomowoc HS and the line was still forming behind me waited in line about 35 minutes"

8:42 a.m.
One of our 620WTMJ staff members tells us "There is about a 30 minute wait at my Brewers Hill/Riverwest polling place at Carver Elementary. Poll volunteers say longest lines since '08 Presidential election."

8:37 a.m.
Gov. Walker had to wait in a long line himself to vote.  Here's his reaction.

8:06 a.m.
Don't be this guy: Jason, who voted in the Milwaukee area:

"I was #1 . . . at the wrong polling station."

Other updates we've recently received:
- Tweeter @KenRyan_MKE: "25-minute wait at Museum on Prospect."
- Tweeter @Mcogs7: "in and out in 10 mins in Oak Creek (including time to register)"

8:04 a.m.
It's not just in Southeastern Wisconsin where turnout is huge.  Check out the update from Doc and Barbara:

"Voted at the fire station in the small Town of Brillion in Calumet County ~ NEVER seen so many cars in the parking lot when we pulled in at 7:01AM OR people waiting in line to vote this morning"

8:02 a.m.
Newsradio 620 WTMJ's Michelle Richards talked with Mayor Barrett right after he voted Tuesday morning.  He called the big turnout "very encouraging."

7:35 a.m.
From our TODAY'S TMJ4 viewers and 620WTMJ listeners on Facebook - a litany of descriptions showing long lines at the polls: 
- Barry: "Waukesha is PACKED!!!"
- Ricardo: "Still solid line in Bay View."
- Richard: "Glendale... not too bad. I arrived at 6:43 and was voter #15 - about 40 in line when I left."
- Christine: "very long Washington county"
- Rick: "Town of Farmington (Washington county) - usually around 30 when the polls open. Today I'd estimate 125-140. Never saw anything like it here."
- Kevin: "10 minutes before the polls opened at 65th school, I was 3rd in line with nobody behind me."
Scott: " The lines at my Franklin location at 7:15 were well out the door. I can normally be in and out in 10 minutes. Not this morning. "

7:26 a.m.
Mayor Barrett has arrived to vote at the French Immersion School in Milwaukee.  Photojournalist Greg Best took photos of him - check them out in our photo gallery.

7:23 a.m.
From TODAY'S TMJ4 viewer @MsQuarter: "Lines out the door! Everyone either solemn or just tired (it is early)"

From former TODAY'S TMJ4 reporter Vivian King, who is working as a volunteer at a local polling place: "Wow! We had a line waiting for our polling place open."

7:14 a.m.
Within the first seven minutes, Gov. Walker was found in line at his polling place in Wauwatosa. Here's a photo gallery, including pictures of Walker taken by TODAY'S TMJ4's Nick Montes.

7:04 a.m.
Mayor Barrett was to vote at the French Immersion School this morning.  According to Newsradio 620 WTMJ's Michelle Richards, he'll be in a long line.  Already, the lines were dozens of people long, extending throughout the school's hallways.

7:00 a.m.
Polls are open!  Send us your stories, photos and videos of what you're seeing here!

6:43 a.m.
If people in the city of Milwaukee have reason for complaints about illegal activities at the polls, they can call 414-254-9001.

6:24 a.m.
One two-word tweet came this morning that describes well the role of people in Wisconsin today.  As tweeted by @kristinruesch: "Our turn."

6:06 a.m.
An hour before the polls were to open, a number of faith leaders held a prayer service in Milwaukee's central city.

Longtime civil rights activist and Democrat Jesse Jackson held the event with seven clergy members, Catholic and Protestant, at Mt. Zion Baptist Church near the corner of North 2nd Street and West North Avenue.

6:05 a.m.
Where is each gubernatorial candidate voting, and what are they doing today?

Gov. Walker was to vote near his home in Wauwatosa, while Mayor Barrett was to do the same in Milwaukee.

Then, each was to go deep into the day campaigning throughout the state.

Walker was to cast his vote just after 7:00 a.m. at a school near his home in Wauwatosa.

He then was to make campaign stops Ace Marine in Green Bay at 10:00 a.m. and Tomcor Industries in Wausau at 12:00 p.m. before his election night event at the Waukesha 

County Exposition Center in Waukesha just after 8:00 p.m.

Barrett was to cast his ballot just after 7:00 a.m. at a school near his home in Milwaukee.

Then, he was to head to events at the 

Labor Center in Racine at 11:00 a.m. and in Brown Deer at 2:00 p.m. before holding his election night party at the Milwaukee 

Hilton after 8:00 p.m.

5:32 a.m.
One voter told TODAY'S TMJ4's Susan Kim on her Facebook page that he was in line for the polls at 33rd and Burnham - five and a half hours before the polls were to open at 7:00 a.m.

As he wrote, "I wouldn't call this 'craziness'...this is what democracy looks like!  Get out and VOTE!!"

5:15 a.m.
How do I register to vote?  Do I need my ID?

Click here for details on voter registration information.

4:51 a.m.
Nearly a year of "Capitol Chaos," the 2011 collective bargaining law, tens of thousands of protesters, passionate calls and reportedly one million signatures in support of the removal of Governor Scott Walker from office, a groundswell of Republican support for him during the recent recall primary, border-to-border campaigning involving himself and his Democratic challenger, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett.

It all comes down to today, and your vote.

The Wisconsin gubernatorial recall election starts at 7:00 a.m. and ends at 8:00 p.m. at various polling places across the state.

Both Barrett and Walker were making their last-minute pitches to voters, very few of whom were undecided (if polls such as the Marquette University Law School poll were correct).

The race for Lieutenant Governor and four Senate races were also being contested.