- Posted May 23, 2012 by
La Crosse, Wisconsin
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Election 2012: Your stories
Barrett Looks to STOP Governor Walker
- zdan, CNN iReport producer
La Crosse, WI- With less than two weeks left before Wisconsin’s historic recall election, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, is crisscrossing the state in his bid to unseat Governor Scott Walker. It has been a challenging campaign as Barrett is being outspent by Walker supporters by an estimated 25:1 margin, with the majority of the dollars coming from Republican donors outside Wisconsin.
In a short one-on-one interview Barrett pointed out “I am not a playing the rock star like Scott Walker, but I am rock solid on creating jobs for the state.” Governor Walker made a campaign pledge to bring 250,000 jobs to the state, but has fallen dramatically short. Recently Walker announced that Wisconsin gained approximately 23,000 public and private jobs last year. However, a recent federal report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics showed Wisconsin losing 6,200 private sector jobs in April 2012, on top of nearly 34,000 jobs lost in 2011, the worst in the U.S. It may be difficult to determine what labor figures are more accurate, however CBS affiliate WASW-TV in Wausau states, “The Walker administration released the [their job] numbers a month and a half before they were set to come out on June 28. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics usually reviews and verifies the figures after the state sends them in. Also, since the quarterly report hasn’t come out yet, it's impossible to compare Wisconsin to any other states.”
In the meantime oversized printed signs saying, “We Stand for Walker” dot the Wisconsin landscape and front yards, and many handmade signs calling for the Recall of Walker can be seen throughout the state. Barrett says, “These handmade signs shows that this is a grassroots effort” by the people of Wisconsin.
Barrett was attending a fund raiser in La Crosse and will be traversing the state to raise much needed dollars for his campaign as he sprints towards the recall election June 5th. In speaking with Barrett, he was very approachable, friendly, and well versed on a wide variety of issues. Barrett pointed out the Walker wants “Wisconsin to be a right to work state by eliminating all unions, has caused the state to lose the most jobs in the country, and had to create a criminal defense fund for an on-going John Doe probe” of his staff and potentially of Walker himself. He continued by saying, “I am not in this race for myself, but for the state of Wisconsin.”
Barrett continues to stress that he is trying to “stop the ideological war of Scott Walker.” In a few short weeks both the citizens of Wisconsin and the nation will know the outcome of the recall, which could have major implications on the looming presidential election this fall. Early voting in Wisconsin is currently under way.