UPDATE: Barrett Wins Democratic Primary

UPDATED Wednesday, May 9, 2012 --- 1:51 p.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- The Democrats' hope for ousting Scott Walker is a low-key, well-liked Milwaukee mayor whose last brush with fame came when he interceded in a fight outside the Wisconsin State Fair and got badly beaten with a tire iron.

It will take all the political muscle Tom Barrett can muster to knock off the Wisconsin governor, who has become a national hero to conservatives and a fundraising powerhouse. The June 5 recall election is less than a month away.

Barrett's recall challenge is just the third gubernatorial recall in American history. It's a rematch of the 2010 governor's race. In the 18 months since the two last appeared on the ballot together, Wisconsin has descended into political chaos fueled by Walker and his aggressive attack on collective bargaining for public-sector workers.

Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.


UPDATED: Tuesday, May 8, 2012 --- 9:45p.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Major Wisconsin unions that had endorsed Kathleen Falk in the Democratic primary for governor are now backing the winner Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett.

Barrett defeated Falk and two other Democrats in Tuesday's primary. He will face Republican Gov. Scott Walker on June 5.

Unions have had a rocky relationship with Barrett during his eight years as Milwaukee mayor, and some leaders urged him not to get into the race.

But following his win, praise came from the statewide teachers union, the largest union representing state workers and the AFL-CIO.

Leaders of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees says they will do everything they can to defeat Walker.

The recall was spurred by Walker's proposal effectively ending collective bargaining rights for most public workers.


UPDATED: Tuesday, May 8, 2012 --- 9:30p.m.

Falk Statements on Primary Elections Results:

Kathleen Falk, former Dane County Executive, released the following statements on the results of the Democratic primary. Falk delivered the statements in a speech to supporters at the Edgewater Hotel in Madison.

"I congratulate Tom Barrett on his victory tonight. Tomorrow, I will join Tom and the other candidates in this primary to renew our commitment to taking our government back.

"The next four weeks may be the most important in our state’s history. And each one of you has an important role to play.

"Let’s join together to restore all those things we love about Wisconsin. Let’s make sure that this people’s movement continues, and that our voices are heard here in our state and across our nation.

"Tom Barrett will focus on our real needs: jobs and education. Just as you supported me, we must now support him. We must support him with all our energy and enthusiasm. This movement needs the passion of all of you who have worked so long and with such sacrifice to make this recall happen.

"If we all keep working together, in 28 days we get our state back on track.

"Thank you to the leaders and members across the state of WEAC, AFSCME, SEIU, UFCW, Sierra Club, Young Progressives, IBEW Locals 158 and 159, Building and Construction Trades of SC WI, Clean WI Action Fund, Emily's List, AFL-CIO, Voces de la Frontera, and the Women's Campaign Fund. Your values are my values and we will continue our work together.

"And finally, thank you to the countless men and women from all across the state who believed in our cause; and in me. I will not forget your stories, your faces and your voices.

"Thank you very much."


UPDATED: Tuesday, May 8, 2012 --- 9:12p.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Secretary of State Doug La Follette is praising Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett in his Democratic primary victory.

La Follette said in a statement Tuesday that Barrett's victory "is only the first step of returning our state to the progressive traditions we hold dear."

Barrett will face Republican Gov. Scott Walker in a June 5 recall election.

Barrett defeated La Follette, former Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk and state Sen. Kathleen Vinehout.

La Follette says he knows Barrett is committed to bringing Wisconsin together.

Based on preliminary results, Barrett won with 55 percent of the vote. La Follette came in fourth with 3 percent.

Gladys Huber, a Republican running as a Democrat, was last with less than 1 percent of the vote.

Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.


UPDATED: Tuesday, May 8, 2012 --- 9:00p.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett has won the Democratic primary and will face Wisconsin Republican Gov. Scott Walker in a June 5 recall election that has become a nationally watched battle over union rights.

Based on preliminary results in Tuesday's primary, Barrett beat three other Democrats and one Republican running as a Democrat.

Preliminary results show Barrett had 54 percent of the vote. Former Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk, who was the favorite candidate of major unions, was second with 37 percent. Secretary of State Doug La Follette got 3 percent followed by state Sen. Kathleen Vinehout with 4 percent.

Gladys Huber, the fake Democrat, got less than 1 percent.

The Barrett win sets up a rematch of the 2010 governor's race in which Walker won by 5 percentage points.

Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.


Posted: Tuesday, May 8, 2012 --- 8:30p.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett is leading his Democratic challengers based on early returns in the recall primary.

With just 3 percent of precincts reporting Tuesday, Barrett had 54 percent of the vote.

Former Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk was next at 38 percent. State Sen. Kathleen Vinehout had 4 percent and Secretary of State Doug La Follette had 3 percent.

The winner will advance to face Republican Gov. Scott Walker in just four weeks.

Walker easily defeated token opposition.

Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.

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