GOP effort to recall Democrats fails in Wisconsin

Voters take to the polls as Wisconsin holds the nation's largest ever recall elections. (REUTERS/Darren Hauck)

Wisconsin Republicans failed Tuesday to oust two Democratic state senators, ending a series of recall efforts by both sides that left Democrats with a 2-0 edge in the political game of one-up-man-ship triggered by the tense battle over collective bargaining rights for public employees.

Even with their two wins in an earlier recall effort seeking to oust enough Republicans to take control of the state senate, Democrats fell one seat short of achieving their goal.

So both sides claimed victory following the last of the elections Tuesday.

“This was a political Rorschach test in that anyone can read anything into the result,” Mordecai Lee, a University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee governmental affairs professor and former Democratic lawmaker, told Reuters. “Politically, it was a draw.”

Still, Democrats plan to proceed with an effort to recall controversial GOP governor Scott Walker but doing so will require at least a half-million signatures on a petition.

Democrats Robert Wirch and Jim Holperin easily held on to their seats against an assault by tea party activist Kim Simac and GOP lawyer Jonathan Steitz.

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