Why did Dems spend so little on Wisconsin recall election? (+video)
Republican Gov. Scott Walker has out-fundraised challenger Tom Barrett by more than 7 to 1, and the national Democratic Party's support for Barrett has been tepid at best.
The poll numbers may be tightening, but the gap between the two candidates in Wisconsin’s historic recall election for governor is wide open when comparing support from their respective national parties.Skip to next paragraph
In Pictures Showdown in Wisconsin
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In the weeks leading up to the Tuesday election, incumbent Gov. Scott Walker (R) has received fundraising support from the Republican Governors Association and campaign boosts from the leading stars of his party: GOP Chairman Reince Priebus, US Rep. and House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, and even supportive words from presumptive presidential nominee Mitt Romney during recent swings through the state, though Mr. Romney did not campaign for Governor Walker specifically.
In comparison, the party support for Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett has been sparse: a single email from the Democratic National Committee (DNC) asking donors to support Mayor Barrett’s campaign, a media statement endorsing Barrett after he won the primary, and a brief appearance by former President Bill Clinton in Milwaukee last week. President Obama has not spoken publicly about the race nor has he stopped in Wisconsin to campaign on Barrett’s behalf.
IN PICTURES: Wisconsin recall
Stephanie Cutter, Mr. Obama’s deputy campaign manager, downplayed the party’s involvement, describing the recall to MSNBC as “a gubernatorial race … [that] has nothing to do with President Obama.”
To Barrett supporters, the lack of assistance from the national Democratic Party is glaring and could be to blame if the mayor loses to Walker Tuesday.
“Obama could have been here. Biden? I’m disappointed. They could have done more,” says Bud Balliett while watching election coverage at an American Legion Hall in Kenosha. “However it turns out, we’ll have to live with it.”
Polling released late last week by the Marquette Law School shows Walker leading Barrett 52 to 45 percent among likely voters, however polling released late Sunday by Public Policy Polling in Raleigh, N.C., shows a much tighter race, at 50 to 47 respectively.