EDITORIAL: Recall money poorly spent
The Government Accountability Board last week released information concerning recall elections held across Wisconsin in May and June. The report is eye-opening.
Turns out Wisconsin taxpayers paid out more than $13 million in extra expenses related to the forced elections.
What did the investment of taxpayer money reap? Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker remained in office, defeating his Democratic opponent by a wide margin.
Wisconsin Democrats flipped a couple of seats in the State Senate in their favor, temporarily giving the party control of the legislative body. But because no legislative session will be conducted between the recall election and the November general election, little was accomplished by the political maneuvering.
Backers of the recall effort will claim that democracy was served by the recall effort. A group of people was angry with how things were operating on the state level and they took advantage of the recall tool offered them.
But really, our society is better served if the limited resources government has are saved for more important things. The bill for the recall elections is mostly shouldered by local municipalities, and these often small units of government have little extra change to spare these days.
State residents should keep this in mind before venturing into the recall waters again. Forced elections of this type should be rare and target public officials that clearly no longer have the public's trust.
Otherwise, save the elections for the normal established cycles. It makes both financial and political sense.