|2008||42.31% 1,262,393||56.22% 1,677,211|
|2004||49.31% 1,478,120||49.71% 1,489,504|
|2000||47.56% 1,237,279||47.83% 1,242,987|
|1996||38.48% 845,029||48.81% 1,071,971|
|1992||36.78% 930,855||41.13% 1,041,066|
|1988||47.80% 1,047,794||51.41% 1,126,794|
During the period of the Civil War, Wisconsin was a Republican state; in fact it is the state that gave birth to the Republican Party, although Ethno-religious issues in the late 19th century caused a brief split in the Republican coalition. Through the first half of the 20th century, Wisconsin's politics were dominated by Robert La Follette and his sons, originally of the Republican Party, but later of the revived Progressive Party. Since 1945, the state has maintained a close balance between Republicans and Democrats. Republican Senator Joe McCarthy was a controversial national figure in the early 1950s. Recent leading Republicans include former Governor Tommy Thompson and Congressman F. James Sensenbrenner, Jr.; prominent Democrats include Senators Herb Kohl and Russ Feingold, and Congressman David Obey.
The most famous controversy in the state's political history dealt with foreign language teaching in schools. This was fought out in the Bennett Law campaign of 1890, when the Germans switched to the Democratic Party because of the Republican Party's support of the Bennett Law, which led to a major victory for the Democrats.
The cities of Wisconsin have been active in increasing the availability of legislative information on the internet, thereby providing for greater government transparency. Currently three of the five most populous cities in Wisconsin provide their constituents with internet-based access of all public records directly from the cities’ databases. Wisconsin cities started to make this a priority after Milwaukee began doing so, on their page, in 2001. One such city, Madison, has been named the Number 1 digital city by the Center for Digital Government in consecutive years.
In the 2008 presidential election, Wisconsin voted for the Democratic presidential nominee, Illinois Senator Barack Obama. Obama captured 56% of the vote statewide, with the urban centers of Milwaukee and Madison voting strongly Democratic. Bucking the historic trend, Brown County (home to Green Bay) and Outagamie County (home to Appleton) voted for Obama over John McCain, the Republican presidential nominee. In all, McCain captured approximately 42% of the vote statewide and won 13 of the state's 72 counties. Of the counties won by McCain, only a handful were by greater than 55% of the vote (Florence, Green Lake, Ozaukee, Washington, and Waukesha, with Washington County providing his largest single-county percentage victory in the state). In all, Obama was successful in 59 counties, transcending the state's usual east/west and urban/suburban/rural divides. Wisconsin ranked second in voter turnout in the 2008 presidential election, behind Minnesota.
In 2008 under Democratic rule, Milwaukee became the third U.S. city to pass paid sick-days legislation.
The 2010 elections, however, saw a huge Republican resurgence in Wisconsin. Republicans took control of the governor's office and both houses of the state legislature. Republican Ron Johnson defeated Democratic incumbent U.S. Senator Russ Feingold, and Republicans took two previously Democratic-held House seats, creating a 5–3 Republican majority House delegation.
On February 14, 2011, the Wisconsin State Capitol erupted with protests when the Legislature took up a bill that would end most collective bargaining rights for state employees, except for wages, to address the $3.6 bil. deficit. The protests attracted tens of thousands of people each day, and garnered international attention.
The Assembly passed the bill 53–42 on March 10 after the State Senate passed it the night before, and sent it to the Governor for his signature.
In response to the bill, enough signatures were gathered to force a recall election against Governor Walker. Tom Barrett, the mayor of Milwaukee and Walker's 2010 opponent, won the Democratic primary and faced Walker again. Walker easily won the election 53%-46% and became the first governor in United States history to retain his seat after a recall election.Further information: 2011 Wisconsin protests Further information: Political party strength in Wisconsin Further information: Wisconsin gubernatorial recall election
Read more about this topic: Wisconsin
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Famous quotes containing the word politics:
“The trouble with Nixon is that hes a serious politics junkie. Hes totally hooked ... and like any other junkie, hes a bummer to have around: especially as President.”
—Hunter S. Thompson (b. 1939)
“Philosophy, astronomy, and politics were marked at zero, I remember. Botany variable, geology profound as regards the mud stains from any region within fifty miles of town, chemistry eccentric, anatomy unsystematic, sensational literature and crime records unique, violin player, boxer, swordsman, lawyer, and self-poisoner by cocaine and tobacco.”
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“Of course, in the reality of history, the Machiavellian view which glorifies the principle of violence has been able to dominate. Not the compromising conciliatory politics of humaneness, not the Erasmian, but rather the politics of vested power which firmly exploits every opportunity, politics in the sense of the Principe, has determined the development of European history ever since.”
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