Swing States Breakdown: Wisconsin | Teen Ink

Swing States Breakdown: Wisconsin

October 13, 2012
By Caesar123 DIAMOND, Union Grove, Wisconsin
Caesar123 DIAMOND, Union Grove, Wisconsin
50 articles 7 photos 103 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Madness in great ones must not unwatched go" --Claudius in William Shakespeare's Hamlet


Electoral Votes: 10

Governor: Scott Walker (R)

State Legislature (Upper House): Democratic (17-16)

State Legislature (Lower House): Republican (59-39-1)

Senator: Herb Kohl (D)

Senator: Ron Johnson (R)

U.S. House of Reps. Majority: Republican (5-3)

Well here, it is folks! The very last breakdown (I try to save the best for last)! And how about it? Wisconsin, eh? The past six election cycles were very close (especially 2000 and 2004) but the Democrats have won all of them. This I believe has lulled them into a false sense of security in what could still be a very volatile swing state.

So let’s get to it, shall we? Wisconsin’s number of electoral votes has been shrinking steadily since peaking at thirteen back in the early twentieth century. Though still retaining ten votes, Wisconsin is a sizable prize for any candidate who can lay a claim to it.

Obama beat McCain by large margins here back in 2008, winning with 56% to McCain’s 42%. At the time the governor and the majority of the legislature were Democratic, as were both senators from the state. After his inauguration, if Obama was already thinking about reelection, Wisconsin wouldn’t have been on his to-do list.

However come 2010, and the Republican sweep, the Democrats lost both the governorship and majorities in both the houses of the legislature. Their one incumbent senator running for reelection was stunned in his tracks, and they failed to gain a majority of representatives in the U.S. House.

If it were not for the ensuing battles in the state over collective bargaining laws and reforms, I (and most others) probably wouldn’t see Wisconsin as much different from Michigan right now. When Governor Scott Walker signed his reform laws to try and salvage the state budget and drastically reduce the state deficit, there was an immediate uproar. Protests at the state capitol and throughout the state went on for weeks. All of the Democratic state senators fled the Wisconsin to Illinois in a dramatic attempt to prevent a quorum and an impending vote on the governor’s bill.

Eventually the reforms were passed, and as such a recall election was triggered against Governor Walker (the first ever against a governor in the state of Wisconsin, and only the third ever against a governor in the entire nation). Simultaneously several recall elections were triggered against many Republican state senators (clearly an attempt to regain a majority in the state senate). It would’ve seemed at the time that this was it for many Wisconsin Republicans, as well as a clear rejection of the Tea Party sweep and everything that it had represented.

But as it came to be Governor Walker won his recall election, and with a larger margin than which he’d previously been elected in 2010. And while Republicans lost their majority in the state senate, the difference is still only that of one seat, and many locals believe that Republicans will regain control of the senate when November rolls around.

So resoundingly the Wisconsin Republicans implemented their agenda, and when they met stiff resistance, they were able to power past it. Ultimately Wisconsin voters rejected the idea of a return to liberal policies and liberal agendas, and sided with the right.

For this reason and this reason alone I believe that Mitt Romney can win Wisconsin, but to add insult to injury he tapped Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin’s 1st Congressional District as his running mate. With such a local icon on the ticket I think that many Wisconsinites will find it hard to say no to Romney on Election Day.

But that doesn’t mean that Obama has absolutely no chance in Wisconsin. Strong debate performances or gaffes by Romney could turn the tide. Obama has also been making some desperate pleas to Wisconsin Democrats to overcome the disappointments of 2010 and the recall election and turnout at the polls come November 6th. He’s been hitting up the African American, urban, and unionized communities the hardest, knowing that they’ll likely be the deciders in the election.

So who’s got this one? Well to tell the truth, if I lived anywhere else in the country I’d probably say Obama. After all, six past elections to the Democrats some of the heaviest urban, union, and African American concentrations in the entire country. It would be crazy to assume that Romney could really win.

But I don’t live somewhere else, and after viewing the comings and goings of the past two years, I refuse to believe that anyone but Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan could win this state. After all, voters reconfirmed a man with a conservative agenda twice in the past two years, they refused to let their legislature be hostilely overtaken, and in the end they refuse to put up with the whining and the crybaby demeanor that the liberals put up day after day. In the end the confirmed that they wanted a Republican majority, a conservative majority, and a conservative course of action. In the end, they confirmed that they wanted Scott Walker as their governor.

Now, as I say, there’s always a chance, and with three weeks left until the election, anything could still happen. Gaffes could be committed, momentum could swing the opposite way, and voters could ultimately change their minds. But as Obama slides farther and farther in states where he once led by a wide margin, the likeliness of a comeback from him is dimming.

So that’s the take on Wisconsin. As for the country as a whole, If you follow the way I’ve called these past states, you can see that Romney wins by a wide margin. Now the odds of every state falling exactly as I’ve called it is unlikely, but I’ve done my best to represent the election as best as I can. If you disagree with anything that I’ve said that’s fine. Opinionating differences and the clashing of our ideals has bolstered our strength as a nation altogether. These are my opinions, and I do not condemn anyone who disagrees with me.

Well folks, that’s all. The swing state breakdowns are over, and the only thing that’s left is the actual Election Day. And on that day, what I wrote here won’t be the end of it. Will my writings have influenced people? Perhaps, I can’t say for certain. But what I do know is that it is up to each and every one of you to decide whose side you’re on, and in the end it is up to you the individual voter to decide who’ll be the next President of the United States.

So, everyone have a good Election Day and I hope all of you who are eligible will turn out at the polls on November 6th!

The author's comments:
This piece is the eleventh and final piece in a series that I wrote about swing states and the impact they’ll likely have on the 2012 presidential election. My other articles about the other swing states are, in order: Michigan, Florida, Colorado, Iowa, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Virginia, New Hampshire, Nevada, and Ohio.

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