Wednesday, June 6, 2012

G.O.P. Governor's Win Is Seen as Blow to Labor Unions

Here's your ultra-mainstream reporting on last night's failed recall election, at the New York Times, "Walker Survives Wisconsin Recall Vote":

WAUKESHA, Wis. — Gov. Scott Walker, whose decision to cut collective bargaining rights for most public workers set off a firestorm in a state usually known for its political civility, easily held on to his job on Tuesday, becoming the first governor in the country to survive a recall election and dealing a painful blow to Democrats and labor unions.

Mr. Walker soundly defeated Mayor Tom Barrett of Milwaukee, the Democrats’ nominee in the recall attempt, with most precincts across the state reporting results. The victory by Mr. Walker, a Republican who was forced into an election to save his job less than two years into his first term, ensures that Republicans largely retain control of this state’s capital, and his fast-rising political profile is likely to soar still higher among conservatives.

Here in Waukesha, some Republican voters said the result ended the most volatile partisan fight in memory, one that boiled over 16 months ago in the collective bargaining battle and expanded into scuffles about spending, jobs, taxes, the role and size of government, and more. Democrats, some of whom are already pledging to mount strong challenges for state lawmakers’ seats in November, seemed less sure about the meaning of Mr. Walker’s victory.

“Tonight, we tell Wisconsin, we tell our country and we tell people all across the globe that voters really do want leaders who stand up and make the tough decisions,” Mr. Walker said, delivering a victory speech to supporters here. “But now it is time to move on and move forward in Wisconsin.”

In his concession speech in Milwaukee, Mr. Barrett said: “We are a state that has been deeply divided. It is up to all of us — our side and their side — to listen, to listen to each other.”

The result raised broader questions about the strength of labor groups, who had called hundreds of thousands of voters and knocked on thousands of doors. The outcome also seemed likely to embolden leaders in other states who have considered limits to unions as a way to solve budget problems, but had watched the backlash against Mr. Walker with worry.

 Some Republicans said they considered Mr. Walker’s victory one indication that Wisconsin, which President Obama won easily in 2008 and which Democrats have carried in every presidential election since 1988, may be worth battling for this time.

“Obviously, Scott Walker winning tonight means that the Republicans are here for real,” said Reince Priebus, chairman of the Republican National Committee. “Conservatives are here for real.” Mr. Priebus was attending Mr. Walker’s victory party at the Waukesha County Exposition Center, where “We Stand With Walker” signs were all around.

And at Freedom's Lighthouse, "Republican Gov. Scott Walker’s Victory Speech after Winning Recall Election by Wide Margin – Video 6/5/12."