Rep. Barney Frank: Wisconsin recall was ‘a big mistake’
Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) on Wednesday said it was a bad move for Democrats and unions to attempt to recall Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R).
“I think the people on the Democratic side made a big mistake and the funding thing was a big deal,” Frank told The Hill. “My side picked a fight they shouldn’t have picked. The recall was upsetting to people, the rerun of the election with [Democratic Milwaukee Mayor] Tom Barrett — it’s not a fight I would have picked.”
Walker, along with Republicans Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch and state Sens. Scott Fitzgerald, Terry Moulton and Jerry Petrowski all defeated their challengers on Tuesday night.
“Despite the disappointing outcome of tonight’s election, there is no question that over the past year this recall effort sent a message to Scott Walker that his brand of divisive politics is offensive and wrong,” DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz said. “Thousands of Wisconsinites mounted this effort in the face of a flood of out of state, secret and corporate special interest money—amounting to a massive $31 million war chest for Governor Walker to just $4 million on our side.”
The recall elections were the culmination of months of effort by state Democrats and labor unions who spearheaded a backlash against the first-term governor, who ran afoul of public opinion last year. Shortly after taking office, the well-funded tea party favorite joined Republicans in the state senate in attempting to strip public labor unions of their ability to collectively bargain.
Last year, Wisconsin Democrats picked up two seats in the state Senate after defeating incumbent Republicans in recall elections. But Democrats fell short of the three seats needed to gain a majority.