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Wisconsin Election Recount Likely In Race Between JoAnne Kloppenburg, David Prosser

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UPDATE: With all 3,630 precincts reporting, JoAnne Kloppenburg had secured 204 more votes than Wisconsin Justice David Prosser in the sate's supreme court election, according to the AP. Below, the original story that appeared in this post.

The Wisconsin Supreme Court race between Justice David Prosser and JoAnne Kloppenburg was still too close to call on Wednesday morning. One day after voters took to the polls in the Badger State to decide the match-up, it seemed that a recount vote would be likely to occur.

The Milwaukee-Journal Sentinel reports:

As of 10:40 a.m., the Associated Press had results for all but 3 of the state's 3,630 precincts and Kloppenburg had taken a 224 vote lead after Prosser had been ahead most of the night by less than 1,000 votes.

That close margin had political insiders from both sides talking about the possibility of a recount, which Wisconsin has avoided in statewide races in recent decades. Any recount could be followed by lawsuits -- litigation that potentially would be decided by the high court.

According to the Associated Press, a recall election in the race would have to be requested by no later than April 20.

Counties must start to canvas the vote on Thursday and they have until April 15 to turn in the results. Once the county's last report is filed, a recount can be requested within three business days.

Prosser's campaign didn't immediately return a message early Wednesday. However, the Journal-Sentinel reported that he told supporters at his election-night party that there was "little doubt" there would be a recount.

When the numbers showed her behind, Kloppenburg told supporters she hadn't given up.
"We're still hopeful," Kloppenburg said. "So thank you all and let's all get a good night's sleep and see what tomorrow brings."

Labor groups and conservative activists turned the match-up into an intense and expensive contest that offered the public their first formal opportunity to weigh in on the national fight over union rights. According to the AP, the race was the most expensive of its kind in state history.

The AP reported on Tuesday:

Election officials in the Democratic strongholds of Madison and Milwaukee have noted remarkably high voter interest in a race Democrats have tried to turn into a referendum on a polarizing union-rights law pushed by Republican Gov. Scott Walker.

The seven-member high court is officially nonpartisan. But incumbent Justice David Prosser, who is seeking a second 10-year term, is seen as part of a conservative four-justice majority. His challenger, Assistant Attorney General JoAnne Kloppenburg, has been presented as an alternative that would tilt the court's ideological balance to the left.

Walker has said that he won't interpret the outcome of the race as an endorsement or indictment of his policies, suggesting voters who have a position on certain legislation should vote for lawmakers who support their views and use the Supreme Court race to choose who's more qualified to interpret the Constitution.

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