A couple thousand rabble rousers and nerdy savants from across the republic are letting loose this weekend.
The state senator filed for her run in the Democratic primary saying, “The people of Wisconsin are tired of money in politics and being told who to vote for.”
Today is the deadline for candidates challenging Scott Walker for governor in the historic recall election to turn in their nomination papers to the Government Accountability Board. Potential candidates had ten days to gather at least 2,000 signatures. State Senator Kathleen Vinehout delivered more than 3,300 signatures on over 400 petitions after a brief press conference under the windows of Scott Walker’s office this morning.
A small group of enthusiastic campaign volunteers accompanied Vinehout on her march from the Capitol to the GAB two blocks away. When they reached the GAB office Vinehout presented the box of petitions saying, “These are the hopes and dreams of the people of Wisconsin for a fresh start in Wisconsin government and politics.”
Run on a shoestring budget and fueled by the high energy of a network of more than 250 volunteers in thirty-nine counties throughout the state, the Vinehout campaign is slowly making inroads into the consciousness of Wisconsin voters. The campaign does not have money to run expensive advertisements and is relying on social networking and door knocking to get across its message of healing political divisions and working on practical solutions to Wisconsin’s pressing social and economic problems.
In a brief interview with journalists after delivering the petitions, Vinehout said, “The people of Wisconsin are tired of angry name calling. They want solutions, not sound bites. They’re tired of money in politics and being told who to vote for.”
She added, “We need to stop making enemies out of business and labor. We need to work together to solve the difficult problems of the state.”
Summing up the heart of the Vinehout campaign, a volunteer said, “We want to change politics as usual, not just change governors.”
The primary election is scheduled for May 8 when Vinehout will contend with Secretary of State Doug LaFollette, former Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk, and Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett to run on the Democratic Party ticket against Scott Walker. The general election is set for June 5.
Rebecca Kemble is an Anthropologist who studied decolonization in Kenya. She serves on the Board of the US Federation of Worker Cooperatives and is a founding member of the Wisconsin Citizens Media Cooperative.