Talking Points Memo: Progressives Get Serious About Wisconsin Recalls

March 8, 2011- A coalition of progressive groups are taking their threats to recall several Republican members of the state Senate in Wisconsin to the next level this week.

The Progressive Change Campaign Committee and Democracy For America say they've raised more than a half million dollars from a TV ad the groups have been running in two Wisconsin media markets for a week. Now they plan to take that money and refocus their attention on recalling three Republican Senators.

PCCC and DFA first raised the recall threat last week, launching an automated phone campaign to gauge voters interest in recall in several state Senate districts. The response? Voters are ready to give their Senators the boot — and the PCCC and DFA are ready to help.

According to results of the campaign provided to TPM, out of some 50,000 robocalls, 59% of respondents said they'd consider recalling their Republican state Senator as the standoff in Madison between union supporters and Gov. Scott Walker (R) continues.

PCCC and DFA aren't the only ones talking recall. The state Democratic party recently geared up their own recall effort.

"They are the ground forces," PCCC co-founder Adam Green told TPM. "Our ads provide air cover."

The next steps for the PCCC/DFA effort include "a large six digit buy" expanding the TV ad through the next week. The ad has been running in Milwaukee and Madison. Now it will expand media markets in Green Bay and La Crosse, which the sponsors say means it will cover the districts of three Republican state Senators who can currently be recalled under Wisconsin law: Sens. Randy Hopper, Alberta Darling and Dan Kapanke.

PCCC and DFA said the buy will expand further in the coming days.

A total of eight of the state Senate's 19 Republican Senators can be recalled this year. The three Senators set to be targeted by the PCCC ad won their last election with slim margins. President Obama won all three districts in 2008.

"Thanks to people-powered fundraising at, these Republican senators won't know what hit them," Green told TPM in an email, referring to the online fundraising campaign that's paid for the Wisconsin ad. "As Republican poll numbers continue to plummet, the choice for these senators is clear: Vote no on Walker's budget or be booted from office."


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