MADISON, Wis., Feb 27 (Reuters) - Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker will not challenge any of the more than one million signatures gathered by opponents to force a vote to recall the controversial Republican, saying that his campaign did not have enough time to review them.
Walker faced a deadline Monday to file challenges after a Dane County judge granted him a 20-day extension beyond the 10 days allotted under state law. Walker also sought an additional two weeks but was turned down.
"We faced an impossible timeline," Walker spokeswoman Ciara Matthews told wispolitics.com.
Walker has been in office only a year but he angered Democrats and union members by pushing through the state legislature a law stripping public sector unions of many of their powers. Republicans said the law was necessary to improve the condition of state finances but Democrats accuse him of "union busting." Tens of thousands of people marched on the state capital to protest last winter.
Matthews said recall organizers were given 60 days to collect signatures, twice the time the campaign was given to review them.
"It obviously takes more time to verify signatures than it does to collect them," she said.
Democrats were not immediately available to comment on Walker's decision not to challenge the signatures. (Reporting by Jeff Mayers; Editing by Greg McCune)
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33 out of 100 seats are up for election. 51 are needed for a majority.
|Seats gained or lost||+2||-2|
* Includes two independent senators expected to caucus with the Democrats: Angus King (Maine) and Sen. Bernie Sanders (Vt.).
All 435 seats are up for election. 218 are needed for a majority.