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Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Wednesday, July 30, 2014

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In Milwaukee Buzz Commentary

Experts believe 60-percent of the state's registered voters will turn out on June 5. (PHOTO: Tom Arthur)

How can anyone be undecided when it comes to the recall race?


Several wise men have been on television around Milwaukee recently and all have said essentially the same thing.

"This election will be decided by the undecided."

That statement is usually made in semi-ponderous tones with a serious nod of the head and a conviction that looks good on television.

There's only one thing wrong with the statement. I don't think all those pundits have any idea what they are talking about.

How in the world can anybody be undecided in this race?

It was Feb. 15 of last year when Walker introduced the bill known as Act 10. That set off a firestorm of protest that captured national attention and will result in the election next Tuesday when some voters try to recall Walker.

In those 16 months is has been virtually impossible to hide from the onslaught of opinion about this piece of legislation. Wisconsin has almost 4.5 million eligible voters and just short of 3.5 million registered voters. People who should know expect that 60 percent or more of those voters will be counted next week. That would shatter all previous records.

If you are a person who is going to vote next week, how in the world could you possibly be undecided?

In order to have not made up your mind, you would need to be one of several things:

  • somebody who never watches television, never listens to the radio, never takes any fliers off your front screen door handle or never even looks at junk mail.
  • somebody who thinks Scott Walker may have second thoughts and decide to restore collective bargaining rights for public workers, introduce stringent environmental regulations, increase or restore funding for public education, won't be indicted by a grand jury or stop using the word "Forward."
  • somebody who thinks Tom Barrett believes in limited government, would promise to never raise taxes, wouldn't punish public employee unions for not backing him in the primary, would pledge never to get into a fistfight again or stop calling Scott Walker a criminal.

See what I mean?

There is nobody who doesn't know what these two guys stand for and believe.

They are both clear as the windshield on a brand new car. There is no subterfuge. No doubt.

If we accept the notion that there really are almost no voters who are undecided, then how do we go about predicting a winner?

Most experts agree that nice weather and a giant turnout favors Democrats and bad weather and a low turnout favors Republicans.

So, if you want to know who's going to win, watch the weather forecast Monday night.

Talkbacks

Victor Golf | June 1, 2012 at 1:04 p.m. (report)

beefsupreme. He recently decided to participate in the election. Once that decision was made I don't think it look long for him to decide who to vote for.

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beefsupreme | June 1, 2012 at 10:08 a.m. (report)

Classic begel. Didn't you just recently decide to vote in this election?

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BrewCityTimmy | May 31, 2012 at 4:20 p.m. (report)

I'm still on the fence a bit because I voted for Barrett originally. In a head to head race probably still would but inthink the recall is a sham and think walker got shafted. He won he should serve his term. So I'm not sure yet what to do. Vote for who I would vote for or vote based on my opinion that the recall is rediculous.

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xofferson | May 31, 2012 at 3:32 p.m. (report)

Actually, the undecideds in this race are the lowest I've ever seen, in 25 years of political work. Most of them have it at 2%. And you may be right that some of those people will still be undecided the day after the election, because they are not going to vote. The real question is whether Barrett can peel away a few of the soft supporters of Walker, who may still change their minds. Walker, of course, is trying to do the same to Barrett. And this is one where turnout does matter and could well decide it.

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