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Eric Odom of Campaign Trail Report.com will be traveling with us on the Tea Party Express as we wind through Wisconsin on a “shore up the vote” trip to rally voters for the upcoming Aug. 9th special election. Eric tells the Wisconsin Story as well as any I’ve read:

The Political Landscape of Wisconsin
In 2010 voters sent Democrats running for the hills as a result of irresponsible spending and too much regulation. Wisconsin voters elected Scott Walker with 52% vs the powerful Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barnett. Voters also elected Republicans to serve as Attorney General and State Treasurer.

At the federal level voters sent Democrat Senator Russ Feingold packing, replacing him with Republican Ron Johnson. Republicans also picked up two House seats, knocking out one incumbent and swiping up an open seat.

Back at the state level, and this is why this weekend is so important, voters delivered a decisive pink slip to Democrats in the State Legislature. Prior to the 2010 election, Democrats held a 52-46 advantage over Republicans in the House. On election night, voters turned the tide, giving Republicans a 60-39 advantage. In the Senate voters shifted power as well. Republicans now control the Senate with a 19-14 majority.

This is what the union battle was all about earlier this year. Big wealthy public unions didn’t like the choices voters made, so they stormed Madison and harassed the will of the voters for weeks on end. The union allies (Democrats in the state legislature) acted like cowards and fled to Chicago to hide from their obligations in Wisconsin for fear of union backlash.

In the end, the will of the voters was carried out. Scott Walker’s bill restraining the amount of financial bleeding through public unions was passed. Republicans won a wildly controversial State Supreme Court race which dealt a stunning defeat to the powerful union forces across Wisconsin.

The public unions wouldn’t let the fight die there, though. Six of the Wisconsin State Senators are now facing recalls (August 16) and desperately need our help to ensure the will of the Wisconsin voters remains intact. The six Senators are listed here.

Recalled State Senators

Senator Robert Cowles (R) – Senator Cowles’ time in Wisconsin’s capitol has been dedicated to cutting waste and fraud. He has made strong calls for audits to both the public energy sector and state Medicaid program. He has been an ally to Wisconsin taxpayers, advocating for efficiency in government by cutting wasteful spending. As Senator Cowles faces a recall, he needs your support!

Senator Alberta Darling (R) – Senator Darling has recognized the dire state of Wisconsin’s budget and has worked hard to reign in spending. She has co-authored the Job Creation Act, promoting private sector growth while voting to cut taxes. Senator Darling is working hard to protect Wisconsin and she needs your help!

Senator Sheila Harsdorf (R) –Senator Harsdorf feels Wisconsinites are taxed enough and the only way to fix the budget is to slash government spending. The Senator has made a strong stand against the union bosses focused on recalling her saying: “Union bosses don’t run government, people do.  I will not be intimidated into voting against taxpayers.” She has proven to be a strong representative of the people, but needs your support now!

Senator Luther Olsen (R) – Senator Olsen is a dedicated proponent for education and has tirelessly advocated on the students behalf. He has recognized the flaws in the education system and by voting for Scott Walker’s collective bargaining law, shows he understands the damages big-unions have done to our education system. As Senator Olsen comes under fire from the desperate unions, he will need your help!

Senator Randy Hopper (R) – Senator Hopper ran for office wanting to change the “politics-as-usual” mentality. Upon entering office, he donated his legislative pay raise to three YMCAs’ Strong Kids Campaigns. As a former small business owner, he is focused on economic development and job creation. He has committed to lowering taxes and growing the economy – support Senator Hopper as he fights off this unwarranted recall election!

Senator Dan Kapanke (R) – Senator Kapanke, a veteran and former business owner, was named “Legislator of the Year” for is innovative ideas and strong stance on Wisconsin’s out-of-control spending. Senator Kapanke was one of the big proponents to the collective bargaining law that was passed in Wisconsin recently. He is a proven conservative reformer, which in-turn has put him in the crosshairs of the unions. As the recall election approaches, he needs your help!

It’s still a little early in the 2012 election season so “most” in the movement aren’t glued to the stories of political battlefields just yet. But even this early there is one worth telling, and it’s most certainly worth sharing with everyone you know. We should all be somewhat familiar with the early shots across the bow in this particular battleground… the northern state of Wisconsin.

The battle for Wisconsin is incredibly important right now for multiple reasons.

  1. Wisconsin is ground zero for the EPIC showdown between the all-powerful public unions and fiscally responsible, newly elected Republican controlled state government
  2. Wisconsin is now considered a possible “toss-up” state in the 2012 POTUS election
  3. Wisconsin voters may see their 2010 decisions reversed if we as a movement don’t rally in favor of those fighting the powerful public unions

Fortunately for the movement, we’ve got heavy hitters on the ground in Wisconsin right now. Our friends at the Tea Party Express are gearing up for a statewide tour this coming weekend to rally voters to hit the polls. The Tea Party Express is also running targeted media buys as part of the statewide campaign to bring strong movement action to the battlefield. While other groups out there like to talk the talk, Tea Party Express is walking the walk.

Of course, the Tea Party Express can’t do it alone and we’ll be reaching out to our Wisconsin networks this week to help build some momentum going into the weekend. We ask that you do the same and help generate buzz across the nation as the movement flexes its muscles in Wisconsin. You can view all of the stops on the Tea Party Express website. Please spread the word and let your networks know about the events as they unfold.

We as a movement witnessed a huge win in Wisconsin earlier this year. But this isn’t just a battle, it’s a war. We can’t just be a part of one battle and then walk away from another one. We’ve got to be engaged in every battle and respond to every call for action.