The first official recall petition against Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker was filed Friday, kicking off a period of unlimited campaign fundraising that was originally expected to begin Nov. 15.
According to the Milwaukee-Wisconsin Journal Sentinel, David Brandt -- a supporter of Walker -- filed the petition in order to give the governor an extra week and a half to raise unlimited campaign contributions. Walker's ability to raise funds without the binds of the state's $10,000 donation limit for individuals comes thanks to a loophole in Wisconsin election law that lifts the limit for targets of recall elections.
Brandt -- who along with Bettie Brandt has given Walker a total of $238 since September 2010, according to the Wisconsin State Journal -- filed the petition with the state's Government Accountability Board under the committee name "Close Friends to Recall Walker." Brandt wrote in the petition that he was registering the recall committee to "fulfill my friend's last request," and noted that he would not raise or spend more than $1,000 in his recall effort.
The official recall petition complicates matters for those leading the more serious recall effort against Walker. Organizers of the effort will have 60 days starting Nov. 15 to gather, on a separate petition, the more than 540,000 signatures required to bring on a recall election. Until an election is authorized, Walker may continue to fundraise without limits.
While the official recall campaign is just beginning, anti-Walker sentiment has been present in Wisconsin since he took office in January 2011. His controversial anti-union law, which stripped public employees of their collective bargaining rights, sparked a wave of recall elections in which six Republican state senators were challenged and two lost their seats.
Most recently, Walker was targeted by protesters involved with the Occupy Wall Street movement. Chicago protesters crashed a breakfast event where Walker was speaking on public policy, chanting "union busting, it's disgusting" and "we are the 99 percent" during his remarks.
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