The grassroots group United Wisconsin announced today that the effort to recall Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker has gathered 300,000 recall signatures in the first 12 days. Organizers have 48 more days to reach the minimum number of 540,208 certified signatures.
United Wisconsin reported that Wisconsinites signed the petitions at a rate of 1,040 signatures per hour. The group's press release featured numbers from counties that had voted for Walker in 2010. For instance, 10,033 residents from Columbia County signed recall petitions, over 45 percent of the total gubernatorial vote in 2010. Organizers also collected 4,713 signatures in rural Pierce County and 3,698 signatures in rural Oneida County.
State Democratic Party Chairman Mike Tate said on MSNBC's Ed Show that the long Thanksgiving weekend was a plus for the 20,000 volunteers who created "Black Friday" plans, gathering signatures in parking lots of shopping malls and department stores. It is also gun deer season in Wisconsin and volunteers worked deer cleaning stations, according to Tate. Signatures gatherers were observed on busy street corners, coffee shops, football games, "Turkey Trots," church gatherings and more.
Signatures will be collected until January 10, 2011 and submitted to the Government Accountability Board (GAB) on January 13. United Wisconsin has set a goal of collecting 750,000 petition signatures to account for duplicates and signatures that cannot be verified.
An election can be called as early as six weeks after the GAB verifies the signatures, although the review of such a large number of signatures and possible legal challenges may slow the process.
(The Center for Media and Democracy does not endorse or oppose any candidate for office. Since 1993, CMD has been reporting on corporate spin and government propaganda, exposing public relations tactics, and debunking PR campaigns.)