Voter Turnout Higher Than Projected

7/14/11 – Voter turnouts were apparently not so tiny after all in at least some of yesterday’s Wisconsin Senate recall primaries. U-W Madison political scientist Charles Franklin said the turnout in Republican Sheila Harsdorf’s Senate district in western Wisconsin was 88-percent of what the turnout was in the tight Supreme Court race in April. In that district, Democratic teacher Shelly Moore won by the lowest percentage of all the legitimate Democratic challengers running yesterday – 55-percent to 45 for Republican Issac Weix. Throughout the state, voters nominated the only Democrats in each of six districts where G-O-P incumbents are being targeted. And they rejected the so-called “fake Democrats” the Republicans put up to assure that there were primaries, and give the G-O-P senators an extra month to campaign. Franklin said the race with the second-biggest turnout was in the La Crosse area, where 80-percent of the April numbers turned out to nominate Assembly Democrat Jennifer Shilling to run against Senate Republican Dan Kapanke. The third-biggest turnout was in the Fond du Lac area, where 70-percent of the April numbers turned out to nominate Jessica King to run against Senate Republican Randy Hopper next month. Franklin said all three districts had been labeled as the ones most likely for Republicans to lose their seats in the final contests. Democrats are trying to gain three seats of the nine up for recall this summer, which would strip Republicans of the majority they won last fall in the Senate.