The 8th district seems to be going R at this hour, with a lot of huffing and viewing with alarm about Waukesha County’s recurring ineptness at vote reporting. Three flips would have been fantastic, but turning two out of six solidly Republican districts and putting the senate into a one-vote R majority is no small thing. Remember that all the Republican Wisconsin legislators are going to be looking at these recalls, and the fairly close results in two or three other contests, for months, as the overall R polling drifts toward D and election results regress towards the mean. I think this was a very good night, and I think Walker is in serious trouble in his upcoming recall next winter.

Author: Michael O'Hare

Professor of Public Policy at the Goldman School of Public Policy, University of California, Berkeley, Michael O'Hare was raised in New York City and trained at Harvard as an architect and structural engineer. Diverted from an honest career designing buildings by the offer of a job in which he could think about anything he wanted to and spend his time with very smart and curious young people, he fell among economists and such like, and continues to benefit from their generosity with on-the-job social science training. He has followed the process and principles of design into "nonphysical environments" such as production processes in organizations, regulation, and information management and published a variety of research in environmental policy, government policy towards the arts, and management, with special interests in energy, facility siting, information and perceptions in public choice and work environments, and policy design. His current research is focused on transportation biofuels and their effects on global land use, food security, and international trade; regulatory policy in the face of scientific uncertainty; and, after a three-decade hiatus, on NIMBY conflicts afflicting high speed rail right-of-way and nuclear waste disposal sites. He is also a regular writer on pedagogy, especially teaching in professional education, and co-edited the "Curriculum and Case Notes" section of the Journal of Policy Analysis and Management. Between faculty appointments at the MIT Department of Urban Studies and Planning and the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard, he was director of policy analysis at the Massachusetts Executive Office of Environmental Affairs. He has had visiting appointments at Università Bocconi in Milan and the National University of Singapore and teaches regularly in the Goldman School's executive (mid-career) programs. At GSPP, O'Hare has taught a studio course in Program and Policy Design, Arts and Cultural Policy, Public Management, the pedagogy course for graduate student instructors, Quantitative Methods, Environmental Policy, and the introduction to public policy for its undergraduate minor, which he supervises. Generally, he considers himself the school's resident expert in any subject in which there is no such thing as real expertise (a recent project concerned the governance and design of California county fairs), but is secure in the distinction of being the only faculty member with a metal lathe in his basement and a 4×5 Ebony view camera. At the moment, he would rather be making something with his hands than writing this blurb.

3 thoughts on “Wisconsin”

  1. Sorry to point out the gray coat your silver lining is wearing, but a one vote majority is enough for Walker, et al., to do their damage, correct? And don’t forget that there are 2 Democrats up for recall next week. The possibility exists that the GOP picks up one or both of those seats, possibly erasing these gains altogether. Worse, not quite reaching a goal can be disheartening.

    Every football player knows it’s easier to play offense than it is to play defense; the former gets to move forward and the latter tries to stop them. The Wisconsin Dems are now on defense. What’s questionable is whether Democratic activists will have the same zip for next week’s recall elections they had in leading to this one. Especially when you consider hey did not have enough zip or support to win three of six seats when the momentum was arguably in their favor.

  2. These were all Republicans who won in the 2008 Obama wave election in Wisconsin, so taking 2 seats is a major blow. The odds of taking out the 2010 crowd next January just went up quite a bit.

  3. The Chair recognizes the gentleman from Massachusetts:

    May 31, 1787

    Resol: 4. [FN2] first clause “that the members of the first branch of the National Legislature ought to be elected by the people of the several States” being taken up.

    Mr. SHERMAN opposed the election by the people, insisting that it ought to be by the State Legislatures. The people he said, immediately should have as little to do as may be about the Government. They want information and are constantly liable to be misled.

    Mr. GERRY. The evils we experience flow from the excess of democracy. The people do not want virtue, but are the dupes of pretended patriots. In Massts. it had been fully confirmed by experience that they are daily misled into the most baneful measures and opinions by the false reports circulated by designing men, and which no one on the spot can refute. One principal evil arises from the want of due provision for those employed in the administration of Governmt. It would seem to be a maxim of democracy to starve the public servants. He mentioned the popular clamour in Massts. for the reduction of salaries and the attack made on that of the Govr. though secured by the spirit of the Constitution itself. He had he said been too republican heretofore: he was still however republican, but had been taught by experience the danger of the levelling spirit.

    NB: By “republican,” Mr. Gerry refers to a system of legislating whereby the representatives of the people gather and deliberate over the making of laws, taking into account how those laws will interact with existing laws and obligations, factoring new information into the crafting of legislation. Lower case 1787, not upper case 2011.

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