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Friday, May 20, 2011

Reader Poll - Will Kloppenburg Contest The Recount In Court? / Update - Prosser Wins By 7006

As reported yesterday, David Prosser is on track to win the recount over JoAnne Kloppenburg.  It is possible that the Wisconsin GAB will report the final results today, and if it does, I'll update the post.  As of now, it looks like Prosser will win by a margin of approximately 7000 votes (as compared to 7316 after the canvass).

All this time, effort and money netted Kloppenburg a few hundred votes, in line with historical experience in statewide recounts.

Kloppenburg will have 5 business days after the last county completes and reports its recount within which to challenge the results in court, so that likely puts us at the end of next week.

We know that Team Kloppenburg has made a lot of noise, none of which is justified, about "ballot bag security."  But surely Team Kloppenburg knows that this is all smoke and no fire.

But what will she do?  Will she or won't she?  The poll is open until 10 a.m. Eastern on Monday, May 23.

If Kloppenburg concedes over the weekend, post a comment or e-mail me.  I'll be anxiously waiting!

Update: h/t reader Trochilus - final recount total, Prosser wins by 7006. Steve Eggleston has all the details.

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  1. What else does she going to do with herselfe? If she gives up at this point she's done in WI lefty politics. (She's done anyway in elective politics outside of liberal enclaves) She's just going to show that she's a trooper for Union/Lefty interests.

  2. The only question is which day she will file said challenge.

  3. For your poll you need to add the option: That question is above my pay grade.

  4. Democrats have a little trouble with reality.

  5. Sadly, this is what the donks do. They will attempt to de-legitimize anything that they loose. There are example after example and most recently right here in WI with the lowly fleabaggers.

  6. "..as a dog returns to it's vomit," so JoAnne Kloppenburg shall return to her doomed quest for an election [for her] miracle. "It can't be true"! she was heard screaming as they gently led her away.

  7. Via the Journal Sentinel, since the GAB won't accept the certification of the still-unofficial 7,306-vote Prosser win until Monday, Kloppenburg will have until 5/31 to decide what to do.

    Given her campaign already issued a statement that they plan on waiting a while before deciding, look for the decision to be Grand Theft Courts.

  8. It is over. I posted a comment on an earlier post, but it hasn't been approved yet.

    The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has reported the margin was 7,006 (unofficial until posted by the GAB, probably on Monday morning).

    Here is the link to their story, posted at 5:30 pm:

    Recount shows Prosser still the winner by more than 7,000 votes.

    From the story:

    Madison -- With the weeks-long recount complete, unofficial numbers confirm that state Supreme Court Justice David Prosser narrowly defeated Assistant Attorney General JoAnne Kloppenburg in the April 5 election, but the fight may now turn to court.

    Final recount numbers expected to filed later Friday showed Prosser with a 7,006-vote advantage over Kloppenburg.

    Kloppenburg will spend the coming days reviewing the findings of the recount to determine whether to sue over the results, said Kloppenburg campaign manager Melissa Mulliken.

    "I'm not going to speculate" on the likelihood of a lawsuit, Mulliken said. "We have to look at the record and analyze the evidence and the law and make our decision from there."

    Kloppenburg asked for the recount after losing by 7,316 votes.

    Unofficial numbers show her gaining 310 votes in the recount, but still losing to Prosser by more than 7,000 votes.

    Waukesha County finished its recount Friday, two weeks after the state's other 71 counties completed theirs. Waukesha County next was to deliver its totals to the state Government Accountability Board.

    The board, which oversees state elections, plans to certify the totals on Monday, said board attorney Mike Haas. Kloppenburg would have until May 31 to file a lawsuit over the results.

    Prosser campaign manager Brian Nemoir said a legal challenge to the election results was unwarranted.

    "As an attorney, Ms. Kloppenburg would know she has a 'right' to go to court, and as an attorney she should recognize it's not the right thing do," read a statement from Nemoir.

    "Our frustration with a legal challenge would be shared by the voters, taxpayers and legal community who expect better from Ms. Kloppenburg."
    . . . .

    My common sense tells me she won't file an appeal because by now she has to realize this has been a real exercise in "political suicide by recount." If she does so, she will really kill any chance she has at any elective political future.

    But I also believe she is doing this, in part, at the behest of party insiders who are VERY concerned about Wisconsin in 2012, especially with the Senate passage of a bill today to require photo ID at polling places! The Assembly is expected to follow suit pronto, and the Governor will sign the bill.

    Who knows . . . if she manages to delay this process long enough, maybe someone in Washington will thereafter find a place for her.

    So, I think it's only a "reasonably likely maybe" that she will concede -- but it is still only a form of maybe.

  9. A recount would be expensive to mount. Why would smart money on the left want to finance a challange?

    The Dem's are set to lose a lot of House and Senate seats as well as electoral votes in many states in 2012.

    I think the smart money will support a recount if they think, win or lose, that they can get some precedents that would help court challanges in 2012. If they can't or think the precednts will be against them they won't.

  10. The object is to keep Prosser off the Supreme Court as long as possible so that he will be in litigation when the union statutes are being considered and thus the unions will claim he should recuse himself. No great mystery there.

  11. @steveegg . . . I posted a comment or two here recently, expressing curiosity about why there do not seem to have been any polls conducted (or at least none published) gauging the attitudes of the Wisconsin public about the dogged and seemingly irrational insistence on the part of JoAnne Kloppenburg to waste the taxpayers money on this losing quest of hers.

    I understand that you live in Wisconsin, and you have certainly followed the details of this as much as anyone . . . have you seen any polls?

    Also, there is a new (and explosive) paragraph that has appeared in the 7:02 pm updated version of tonight's JS-OnLine story about the Prosser victory (the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel) which reads as follows:

    "And if a legal contest goes on long enough, attorneys say it could delay efforts to swear Prosser in for a new term on Aug. 1, leading to a temporary vacancy on the closely divided high court."

    Is this also one of the reasons why you seem to believe she will continue on with this nonsense -- the way you put it before was, "Grand Theft Courts?" But do you think she is really doing it to win? Or, to politically upset the apple cart?

  12. The unions simply cannot allow Prosser to be seated after 1 Aug when the Budget Repair Bill comes to the SC. That is the whole idea for the recount in the first place...delay and stall. But, it was a prelude to the court battle. The secondary goal is to keep the hate alive through the recall elections. Gotta keep the troops properly motivated. Thirdly, getting that 7th seat would just be a bonus.

  13. @ Trochilus: "But do you think she is really doing it to win? Or, to politically upset the apple cart?"

    Although unasked, I'll answer: neither. She's doing it to delay seating of Prosser and introduce chaos/confusion/uncertainty into the process.

    "In confusion there is profit." Tony Curtis, Blake Edwards' "Operation Petticoat."

  14. Are the Dems interested in how their usual maneuvers in close elections failed to pull off the win? Perhaps the Republicans can share their tactics to other states.

  15. Where would K obtain funding for a court battle, even presuming the objective is to delay seating Prosser? The unions apparently are now threatening to withdraw Dem funding nationally, so, at this juncture, why would they want to waste any more time/money on this particular little battle, which has become essentially non-newsworthy except perhaps in WI? The unions have already made whatever point they wanted to make with all the free news coverage they received during the Madison Capitol protests over the budget bill proceedings. Seems likely that they, the DNC, Organizing for America, MoveOn.org, et al, will be taking their paid goons elsewhere, leaving K to fend for herself.

  16. @Connie, you ask a very good question . . .

    "Where would K obtain funding for a court battle, even presuming the objective is to delay seating Prosser?"

    The answer, I think, may be dependent on the motivation of whoever has been bankrolling her, especially their motivation going forward, now that she has so convincingly lost the recount -- as was fully expected.

    The State of Wisconsin bankrolled the overall cost of that recount, which must have been more than mildly irritating to a significant percentage of the state's citizens, and to some extent (I would guess) regardless of party affiliation. I'd also speculate (and I think justifiably) that an even higher percentage of the people of Wisconsin would be downright irritated if she now chose to initiate litigation to keep this going, ignoring what can only be termed the decisive outcome of her "taxpayer-funded" recall.

    That, in a nutshell, is why I asked the question above about the somewhat curious paucity of Wisconsin-based public opinion polls during the post-election period.

    I am sure both she and Justice Prosser have each had a fundraising organization in place to pay for their attorneys, other paid staff assigned to recall duties, such as communications personnel, reimbursement costs made to volunteers, and any other legitimate incidental expenditures associated with the recall to date.

    I am surprised that reporters have not demanded to know who is contributing, especially to her fund, given the fact that there was virtually no chance at all of her prevailing in the recount. Why hasn't any reporter written a story about the bankrolling of this annoying "exercise in futility" on her part?

    I don't know the law in Wisconsin, but in New Jersey election funds are subject to mandatory reporting requirements, and very quickly (in accordance with fixed reporting schedule requirements) become a matter of public record. We don't elect judges here in NJ, but I would think that the reporting requirements for judges might even be (or perhaps ought to be) more stringent than for other candidates.

    If, for example, a significant percentage of her contributors were outsiders, or people or organizations normally associated with Washington-based or federal candidacies, I think that would be a big story, especially if there were a suggestion that those hitherto associated with the bankrolling of, say, Barack Obama, just as an example, had suddenly taken up an inexplicable interest in helping to bankroll nonstarter recall expenses, and especially dilatory litigation tactics being employed to frustrate the seating of a state Supreme Court justice in the State of Wisconsin!

    So your question is certainly legitimate. And, there may be an answer out there that would be very enlightening to the people of Wisconsin, as they patiently wait for JoAnne Kloppenburg to start behaving in a reasonable manner.

    If the evidence suggests she is doing what she is doing essentially at the behest of, or serving the interests of money manipulators behind the scenes, the people certainly deserve to know that as well.

    One thing is for certain . . . to date, she has displayed a singular lack of good judgment.

  17. Connie:

    K'burg will get money from several Union sources: AFSCME, AFL-CIO, and SEIU--all of which have significant (that is, life-or-death) interests in the benefit-reform legislation now held up by a kangaroo in Madison.

    If K'burg sues, thus delaying Prosser's 8/1 seating, SCOWI will be a 3-3 tie on the question of that legislation, which means that the lower court's ruling is affirmed. Since the lower court in this instance is the Madison-based Court of Appeals, the informed guess is that the ruling will favor the Unions.

    Wisconsin is significant for at least two reasons. First, it is a 'purple' State. Second, it is the "home" of the Progressive movement (the UW-Madison was full of them in the early 1900's.) It's sorta like Jerusalem is to Israel--a sine qua non of the Left.

  18. This comment has been removed by the author.

  19. (corrected inks)

    Ann Althouse opines here, in part:

    "So Kloppenburg failed to win a seat on the Wisconsin Supreme Court in an election that focused on the budget-repair bill, but she could try, by initiating a futile lawsuit about the election, to affect the way the Wisconsin Supreme Court decides the budget case and to affect it in a way that is contrary to what the voters voted for."

    I commented, in part:

    "At some level and at a bare minimum, this sounds in abuse of process. Her object at this point is clearly not to win, nor is it any longer (as she once claimed) pursuing this in order to assure that all votes are counted.

    She seems now to be focused only on accomplishing an improper purpose, one that would be collateral to the proper object of the court process that she is considering pursuing, and, moreover, one that, further, is prima facie offensive to the proper operation of the system of justice.

    If she files suit, she will arguably be seeking to prevent Justice Prosser from being sworn in for the new term beginning on August 1st, and thereby to possibly substantially affect the outcome of the litigation!

    Not only did she waste valuable state resources by insisting on a recount she could not win, and thereby politically commit "suicide-by-recount", but she now appears to be giving serious consideration to stepping right over the line in order to further disrupt the orderly transitional process of the Court, and possibly seeking thereby to affect the outcome of litigation!

    I cannot believe at this point that she is doing this all on her own initiative. In Wisconsin, are judicial candidates required to disclose all contributions, including any contributors to her legal fund to pay for any such litigation?