UPDATE: Prosser Picks Up 6 Votes on First Day in Waukesha County

About a dozen representatives from the Prosser and Kloppenburg campaigns scrutinized the ballot recount in Waukesha County, as Clerk Kathy Nickolaus recused herself from its oversight.

By the end of day one of the state Supreme Court recount, the Waukesha County Board of Canvassers came close to finishing just one of the county's three dozen municipalities, with Justice David Prosser picking up six votes over JoAnne Kloppenburg.

The state Government Accountability Board is posting daily recount tallies from the 72 counties here

The recount kicked off Wednesday with the 's votes and retired Waukesha County Circuit Judge Robert Mawdsley presiding over the process after Waukesha County Clerk  recused herself.

Nickolaus was on hand for the recount but said she would not participate with the other two Board of Canvass members Ramona Kitzinger, the Democratic Party representative, and Pat Karcher, former Waukesha County treasurer.

"I believe that there are those who, through innuendo or erroneous facts, would imply that the election in Waukesha County was not fairly run and I believe this is wrong," Nickolaus wrote in a letter Monday to Waukesha County Executive Dan Vrakas. 

"But I do believe that the citizens of Waukesha County would be best served and there would be a total avoidance of any appearance of impropriety or conflict if an independent third party were appointed by you to run the Board of Canvassers for a recount," she said.

Vrakas appointed Mawdsley, who stuck to the state's strict rules overseeing the process, including banning anyone from bringing purses, bags or black and blue pens or pencils. Only pens of another color ink were allowed inside the room.

Six representatives each from the Prosser and Kloppenburg campaigns were monitoring the recount. Prosser's campaign also hired a court reporter to record the proceedings for any future court ligitation, as did Waukesha County.

The county also hired Barb Hansen, former deputy for the state Government Accountability Board and a 21-year employee of the state Elections Board to assist Mawdsley.

Mawdsley said the county's certified tally prior to the recount was 125,070 total votes cast in state Supreme Court race, with Prosser earning 92,263 votes and Kloppenburg, 32,758.

The morning started with an error.

Someone at the Town of Brookfield wrote the wrong number to identify a ballot bag, writing a "2" instead of a "3," but both campaigns agreed not challenge the error and said the bag could be opened and ballots counted.

Later, there was a one-ballot discrepancy between original absentee ballots and "remade" absentee ballots. When voting machines reject a ballot, election inspectors fill out a new ballot marking the original votes. 

The process was tedious, with the recount of the town's first three voting wards not being completed in the approximately two hours and 15 minutes before a lunch break.

Tabulators were reconciling the number of voters on polling lists, hand counting ballots and piling them in stacks of 25 for each candidate to total and verifying the validity of absentee ballots.

The end of the day resulted in Prosser's vote tally from the Town of Brookfield Wards 1-4, 6 and 8 increasing by five from 962 to 967 and Kloppenburg's total decreasing by one from 367 to 366. The town's Wards 5, 7, 9 and 10 were yet to be finalized.

Next up will be the Town of Delafield, as the county works through the county's three dozen towns, villages and cities. Clerks statewide have said it could cost more than $575,000 to conduct the recount requested by Kloppenburg at taxpayer expense because the final margin was less than one-half of one percent.

Waukesha County is livestreaming its recount here.

sanchez April 29, 2011 at 10:23 PM
SUNDAY MAY 1st 2011 Operation: Secret Shopper Sunday Initiated by all conservative citizens of Wisconsin to prevent the threat posted by union/democrat groups in WI that they will tamper with the food at our grocery stores on May 1st 2011. link: http://www.jsonline.com/blogs/business/120789814.html?page=8 * Make this Sunday your day to grocery shop and fight crime. * You do not need a badge to call the police to report a crime. * Make sure to take the phone number of the local police of the city your grocery store is in with you. Have your phone ready so if you see someone tampering they can be arrested. * if the person you have witnessed tampering with food leaves the store before the police get there MAKE SURE TO GET THEIR LICENSE PLATE NUMBER. Support your local grocery..... You have the right to not be bullied.
Lyle Ruble April 29, 2011 at 10:44 PM
@sanchez...Shopping on the Christian Sabbath?
Jay Sykes April 30, 2011 at 01:55 AM
Where is the J/S politifact [sic] article on the sick-it-to-em campaign; every news report to date is devoid of evidence that a stick-it-to-em campaign has been organized. The 'hot dog' 'polish-sausage-fact' team could 'grind' on Tommy 'stick-it-to-em' Thompson and prove their 'casing' that it's actually 'stuff-it-to-em' and the ''em's", that are to be 'stuffed', would be the stadium racing sausages. Rate that a Pants.... uh.. no... Sausages on fire; as the racing sausage are Klement's, not Johnsonvile.
sanchez April 30, 2011 at 04:15 AM
"Shopping on the Christian Sabbath?" yeah, whats your point?
Randy1949 April 30, 2011 at 04:37 AM
http://www.jsonline.com/blogs/business/120892664.html I propose that anyone who doesn't like the idea of people touching their food avoid grocery stores, because they are public places, and people WILL handle the food. Or is it just those filthy union hands you object to? "Oh, Officer, I saw a man fondling the melons. Arrest him!"
Rick April 30, 2011 at 01:01 PM
So the counting begins. I have asked in the past to what end because the reason(s) are political and not about trying to overturn the election. Even Kloppenburgs reaction to the question she was posed about her overturning the election shows that she doesn't believe that is possible. A 10 second pause (reporters timing not mine) followed by a comment that essentially said "no, but we have to restore integrity to the process..." says it all. The recount, even if it was a 1.999% instead of 0.488% difference, would have still happened because the motives are purely political and not about the supreme court election at all. I believe that John may have the answer or at least a partial answer. Raising funds to help pay for recounting and then making them available for recalls fits. So does keeping the base excited and pushing for more recalls. The belief of "the ends justifies the means" comes into play at this point. One side still can not accept the turn of events between 2008 and 2010. They went from "40 years of our policies..." to the President being afraid of a congressman from Wisconsin, or more specifically his plan. It is time to accept the results of the elections. Both 2010 and Prosser/Kloppenburg Several points above talk about this time in politics being so uncivil... go read about the national politics of the 1850's and 60's... much worse. Also many economists now state that the depression was lengthened by government intervention.
Lyle Ruble April 30, 2011 at 02:41 PM
@sanchez...A bit of tongue in cheek, I'm afraid. Good luck with "Sausage Sunday". Just like the boycott, this too is a whole lot about nothing.
Lyle Ruble April 30, 2011 at 03:11 PM
@Rick...I think we all need to look at the greater strategy by both the Republicans and Democrats. I agree with John Galt of Muskego that the Democratic strategy may be to raise funds for the recall elections. But, that is only one possibility. I see this recount as only a side diversion, just like the product boycotts. A much more reasonable scenario is that the Democratic strategists want to keep their base energized for the fights that are certain to come regarding the recalls. As time goes by, those that were energized early on by the tactics of the Republicans, may lose that energy and become complacent. The Republican response is to keep all of this in the media and show how ridiculous the Democrats are in order to keep the Republican base energized. We don't know which State Senators will have to face a recall, but if all the signatures hold, there are at least 8 senators who will have to defend their seats; 5 Republicans and 3 Democrats. What's at stake here is the Senate majority and the future of the Walker administration's far reaching plans. No matter how you look at it, that's a great deal of money to defend and challenge the seats. From a Democratic perspective, they're looking at draining the election funds of the Republicans before next years general election. Also, I think the Democrats see the recalls as a way to mobilize and keep mobilized the Democratic base for going after the gold ring; Scott Walker. cont:
Lyle Ruble April 30, 2011 at 03:45 PM
cont: @Rick... Something else that comes to mind from your statement concerning 40 years of "our policies" is that if one looks at who has held power over that 40 year period it comes down to something like this: Nationally - Nixon, 3 years; Ford, 2 years; Carter, 4 years; Reagan, 8 years; Bush Sr., 4 years; Clinton, 8 years; Bush Jr., 8 years; and Obama, 2 Years. The Republicans have controlled the White House for nearly 2/3 the time. Over that same period the Democrats had complete control of the Congress 60% of the time. It would follow that "our policies" have been a result of continuing compromises. During the same period in Wisconsin: The Republicans and Democrats have split the State House 1/2 the time. The state legislature over the same period has swung back and forth. What is really at stake in Wisconsin is that many believe that if Obama can't carry WI in 2012, he will lose the election.
Rick April 30, 2011 at 04:06 PM
@Lyle... the statement i quoted was from a Democratic spokesperson, it was not a statement of political history. Your assessment of the last 40 years is pretty much dead on. Funny how "well" the government works when power is split in some form as opposed to what we saw for the 2 years of total Democratic control recently and total Republican control for about the same time frame in Regan's presidency. We can debate all day which of those two periods had the biggest impact on the country... for good or bad. I also think you are more on target with the recount being part of a larger, longer range strategy. Nothing else fits the level of "exciting the base" on either side of the issue. The unfortunate part for Wisconsin is that we are getting steamrolled by politics that have nothing to do with our issues. What should have been an election of a supreme court justice devolved into a "Stop Walker's Agenda". Because that was a close vote we now have "keep the base excited by a recount"... Keep the base excited by recalls (most will fail)... What is good for Washington and union leadership is not what is good for the country, state or the little burbs we live in. I feel more strongly now that i did 20 years ago that big government at all levels need to be scaled back. Let us, our churches and civil organizations take care of the social needs in our communities. Get government back to doing basics... Nation defense, infrastructure, police and fire...
Jay Sykes April 30, 2011 at 04:12 PM
@Lyle, you said Walker will attempt other far reaching plans, if the control of the Senate does not revert to the democrats, through the recall process. What are those plans? While I was not pleased by the process to reduce collective bargaining rights in WI, it is not as extreme as I first believed; evidenced with a similar process happening in a state that leans much further left than Wisconsin, Massachusetts.
Rick April 30, 2011 at 04:21 PM
@Lyle cont... What is the biggest "shame, shame, shame..." isn't the Walker agenda or the valid points pro and con on it. It is the hijacking of it by national interests that do not have to pay for it or live with the consequences. I know you and I do not agree on much on the surface. but I contend that we really are not that far apart. I think we likely do agree on our real goals... Help those that need help, but don't enable... Having a good life and giving our kids and grandkids a chance at even a better one... Let me make my own choices about my life... etc. What seems to be the sticking point is that pesky "how". The two basic trains of thought on the "How" are... Smaller government and let market forces find solutions OR Bigger government and let experts decide for us which way to resolve an issue Both methods have been tried... And both methods have short comings. Smaller government / leave it to the market... REQUIRES diligence by the people, press, churches and government to make sure greed doesn't get out of control Big government / socialism has the same issue with greed, but limited to the powerful, while disenfranchising the masses with no real way to correct course without revolts. There is some control by the people in the first solution. Which is why i side on that point.
Lyle Ruble April 30, 2011 at 05:42 PM
@Rick... Balance in government is what the founding fathers had in mind. Periods of single power leads to way to much mischief. People can accept change at a moderate rate, but rapid change raises insecurity and divisiveness. I would love if the government on all levels were smaller and more efficient. However, I want to remind you that government had to take over so many functions that had been traditionally allocated to faith based and secular organizations because those organizations failed so miserably at meeting the need. In addition, as the need has increased due to economic change and population growth, the needs far exceed the available charity. Therefore, to maintain civil and social harmony, it has become a necessity of the largesse of government with the taxpayer funding the needy. FDR wasn't particularly interested in the social welfare programs and wanted to concentrate on business regulation, but fearing a general uprising of civil unrest and possible revolution, he gave in to protect society. One only has to look at the same period in Germany and you can see what they feared. We all have to accept that the government will continue to be the main provider to the safety nets needed in a free market capitalist society.
Lyle Ruble April 30, 2011 at 05:57 PM
@Jay Sykes... Walker and other conservatives' long term plans are to strip down government to primarily providing for basic services. The public unions had to have their power broken in order to meet to primary goals: 1) Strip the dues money aware from the unions that traditionally fund Democratic and liberal candidates. 2) By removing the voice of public employees; the privatization process can go forward unopposed. Walker wants to eventually get government out of providing public education; get government out of the social service business, primarily welfare of any kind; reduce or eliminate business regulation; and enact legislation to impose social conservative views. If Walker is successful, then he will have the credentials to step onto the national stage, beginning with running for Kohl's senate seat when he retires.
Lyle Ruble April 30, 2011 at 06:55 PM
@Rick... The problem we are facing is that we are limiting ourselves to only two major strategies. We are faced with a number of parameters that have changed the "game". If one looks back to the period between 1930 and 1940, which was the depth of the "Great Depression", the parameters were much different. To begin with the nature of the economy was much different and the US hadn't yet achieved the peak of industrial production. More people were tied to agricultural production and most of all; within the 10 year period the population ranged from 130mm in 1930 to 132mm in 1940. Compare that to today, we have passed our peak of industrial production and moved onto an information and service economy and now have a population of 308mm. We have a classic Malthusian problem where the population far exceeds the ability of the current economy to support it. Therefore, we have more people who are left out and we need to find away of meeting their needs. It becomes more complex with the failure of our education system to educate the population sufficiently to participate in the new economy. For the industrial jobs that still exist, technology and production requires fewer and fewer people to maintain and grow production. What has become the major problem is what to do with low or no skill labor, since that has for all practical purposes moved offshore. One of the problems in our society is that we teach individuality is the highest expression of human existence. cont:
Jay Sykes April 30, 2011 at 07:11 PM
@Lyle, interesting you say that Walker "strip the dues money away". The elimination of the collection of dues through a payroll deduction is the only part of the Walker proposal towards the union that I would have enacted. The union would then exist on its own merit, not through third party collections. I guess you could say I believe in freedom of choice.
Lyle Ruble April 30, 2011 at 07:22 PM
@Rick... With the dependence on the role of the individual it leads to one of the greatest American value of pursuing self interest. That then leads to Social Darwinism, which states that only the fittest will or should survive. This might be well in good in a communal society where all start out on a level playing field, but that is not the case in the US. Therefore, it is almost impossible to let each individual decide for the whole. The only way to deal with such a huge population and subsequent problems is through the expedient use of bureaucracies, whether private or public. I agree with your analysis of we tried both and we also know what both can lead to; fascism or Soviet style communism. Both extremes result in tyranny and oligarchies, which bode ill for all except only the select few. We have to mature to the level where we understand the interaction between the three environments in which we live; the physical environment, the technological environment and the social communal environment. Solutions must be searched for and then implemented.
Lyle Ruble April 30, 2011 at 07:33 PM
@Jay Sykes... I think Walker and the architects of this plan understand human nature. If the unions are not able to participate in collective bargaining except for wages, then why should the worker support the union; especially when the union dues can be put toward the increased cost for healthcare. Not withholding union dues pushes it to the next level of inconvenience, which Walker and company are counting on to further frustrate the public employee. Choice, yes; but limited choice at best.
Rick April 30, 2011 at 08:29 PM
@Lyle... You make some points that i find interesting, but i believe there are some errors in logic. While you obviously have some level of interest in sociology I don't buy into the some of the ideas and conclusions that have been made. While we were in a mostly agrarian society in the 30's we had a significant minority of the population engaged in a manufacturing society. What happened I my mind was that the older industrial models were breaking down and greed and oligopolies abounded. This and the fact that there was no inhibitors to financial institutions from crossing over from banking, insurance and securities (way too much like today I am afraid) that when a bubble burst in 29... the whole thing fell apart... Or so the story is told. I read an article about 10 -12 years ago that proposed an entirely different explanation of what occurred then, and throughout the US economic history. The point was that economic activity varies based on life stages. The premise was that when you are first married and starting a family your spending patterns are different than when you are reaching the point of helping your kids start out on their lives (college or what have you) and again the pattern changes as you approach retirement. Taking those buying behaviors and matching them up with demographics yielded some very interesting results. I am almost out of characters... will pick this up in another post.
Rick April 30, 2011 at 08:56 PM
@Lyle continued... What the author showed graphically was demographics of the US by the age groups / spending patterns on one line and economic activity on another. What the graph showed was a pretty tight tracking with life stage spending and booms and busts from the early 1800's to the 1980's. The author went on to predict that there would be a major bust around 2010 - 2012. Mostly due to the retirement of baby boomers. While there was still shifting from agricultural to manufacturing in the 30's, i would argue that the major shift and social upheaval was more around 1850 that 1930. Also, that shift played a much larger role in the causes of the civil war than acknowledge. Most discussions on the civil war focus on slavery and preserving the union as the causes. I don't think we can ignore the economics, because most wars really are about economics. Slavery was an economic necessity to keep the plantation system vital. I suspect that if there was another way to be profitable without slavery, the institution would have died out because of people recognizing the moral wrong of slavery. However, that didn't happen. Keep reading...
Rick April 30, 2011 at 09:08 PM
@ Lyle one more time... So you had "Abolish Slavery" as the "bumper sicker" of the north and "States rights" as that of the south. But what was really going on was the unwillingness of the south to abandon their economic system pitted against the rising tide of the shift to a manufacturing economy. Today we are again seeing the shift away from a manufacturing economy to information/service economy. Frankly, I think a manufacturing economy is much more able to sustain our population than the service economy we are moving into. I can't help but question if the demands of the unions in the 60's and 70's didn't hasten the destruction of the manufacturing based economy? You also layout the point that the US economy can no longer support the population, which has happened to various societies throughout history. Typically the solution was to see greener fields in your neighbors back yard, and then go take them. Maybe a global economy will prevent WW 3... If you are right about our economy/ population we are doomed unless we have to see past national self-interest. So far as I can see, we can't even see past party lines. Very scary. Last thought, at this juncture in our history, we should be allowing innovation and entrepreneurial spirit lead us to economic activities not thought of yet. Who would have thought that the internet would have changed society so much... Facebook... etc. The big government / big business model squashes innovations.
Lyle Ruble April 30, 2011 at 10:13 PM
@Rick... A kindred spirit. You're on the right track. You caught me; my formal education and degrees involve psychology, sociology, philosophy, economics and political science. I must admit that my logic is not always flawless, but I think I've got the "Big Picture". I don't think I would base all of my predictions on generational consumption patterns. One of the issues I have been working on and writing about for the last 4 or 5 years is the nature of the consumer movement and the impact it has had on the US and global populations. The basis of consumption has dramatically changed since the end of WWII. The message of "I want it now and I'll pay for it later" has been carefully crafted by business and look where it has gotten us. We are living in perilous times. Look what has happened globally when disasters strike and these are not truly global in nature. One of the problems with globalism and the dependence on a global economy is that it makes all of the world's population highly vulnerable. If one of the "big five" should strike, we are looking at losing billions. The "big five" include; an eruption of a mega volcano, an extraterrestrial strike by a comet or asteroid, a worldwide pandemic, a nuclear exchange, or a dramatic climate change. The population has grown to such an extant that their is no place left for people to migrate to. We have run out of "safety relief valves". I fear that our progeny are facing an uncertain future at best. The future looks bleak.
Rick April 30, 2011 at 11:53 PM
@Randy quote from the link you posted: "We have no knowledge beyond unevidenced assertions made to the media by the Wisconsin Grocers Association of any such campaign, but let's be crystal clear--there are not, nor have there ever been, any boycotts encouraged by our organizations. We have made clear all along that we see small business as a parner and ally in getting Wisconsin back to work. have never been boycotts? I remember seeing a list of products and stores to boycott because of contributions to Walker's campaign. Kwik Trip, Coors, Johnsonville, blocking the entrance to Sendick's - it didnt work, but the unions tried. small businesses as a partner? not when boycotts are threatened....
Diane April 30, 2011 at 11:54 PM
that last comment is from Diane. Rick was signed in..............
Lyle Ruble May 01, 2011 at 12:07 AM
@Diane... the boycott issue is a dead horse, let's move on.
Randy1949 May 01, 2011 at 12:08 AM
There's no evidence that the unions are behind the stockering campaign. Or that there's a serious stickering campaign in the first place. Indeed there were boycotts. But by that union? And surely you don't consider Johnsonville and Coors to be small businesses? Sendiks, maybe. I could never afford to shop at Sendiks in the first place, so it's not very hard to avoid giving them business.
Diane May 01, 2011 at 12:15 AM
@ Lyle I was making a comment to a link in Randy's post.... he brought up the boycott issue again. The sticker campaign was a version of the boycott - and disavowed by the union AFTER there was a post that it was illegal and persons tampering with items would be arrested.
Lyle Ruble May 01, 2011 at 12:19 AM
@Diane....This has been followed and the whole thing turned out to be a hoax and rumor.
Randy1949 May 01, 2011 at 04:27 AM
@Diane . . . I was answering Sanchez, who was worried about 'union thugs' handling his meat. I was pointing out that food in grocery stores gets handled a lot anyway. Hardly bringing up the boycott -- rather just that rumor about the stickers, which I find dubious at best. No boycotts for me. I plan to use Angel Soft and smile.
Diane May 01, 2011 at 01:02 PM
@Randy and I was responding to the union comments in the link you posted here - the stickering would have been a typical action of the unions. I am glad that it did not happen and it only would have showed us what to purchase. What's next from the unions?


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