Reporter Zac Schultz recaps a whirlwind year in politics for the Badger State, which experienced a total of six statewide elections throughout the course of 2012.
Clips interspersed with static:
-Scott Walker-- election-- that he'd lose-- He'd lose--
-It is good to be home.
-Come November, the Wisconsin I know-- [static] Thank you-- [static] Will speak out loud and clear--
-You entrusted in me, your vote--
-to be the 45th-- and continue to be the 45th--
-Scott Walker lied to us.
2012 began with democrats making history, delivering nearly one million signatures to recall Governor Scott Walker, and enough signatures to recall four republican state senators as well. Supporters cheered as boxes of petitions were marched into the offices of the Government Accountability Board.
We think this represents such an incredible figure, and is absolutely beyond any challenge, legal or otherwise.
The signatures were shipped off to a secret location. The GAB spent three months processing the petitions and counting the valid signatures.
The motion carries. The petitions therefore will be found sufficient and will be filed, certified and an election called on a date to be determined.
Scott Walker became only the third governor in U.S. history to face a recall election. But first, the democrats needed to decide on their nominee. Four candidates were on the ballot. But it was Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett who won the primary, setting up a rematch of his 2010 election with Walker.
I will end the civil war in Wisconsin.
That set off a four week whirlwind of a campaign, with both sides bringing in big names from out of state. Former President Bill Clinton for Barrett.
You tell him no. You tell him Wisconsin has never been about that, never will be about that, by electing Tom Barrett governor! Thank you! [cheers]
And South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley for Walker.
So I want to tell you this. All eyes are on Wisconsin on Tuesday. And I know we're going to be celebrating. [cheers]
Haley was right. On election night, republicans were celebrating as Walker became the first governor in U.S. history to survive a recall election.
Thanks to all the people who yet again entrusted in me your vote as the governor, to be the 45th and continue to be the 45th governor of the great state of Wisconsin. [cheers]
Republicans also won three of the four State Senate recalls. But the one victory for the democrats was enough to give them control of the Senate, for the moment. After the recall, the focus quickly shifted to the presidential race, with republican Mitt Romney appearing with Governor Walker and Congressman Paul Ryan at an event in Janesville.
President Obama had just put this in his column. He just assumed from the very beginning, Wisconsin was going to be his. [jeers] But you know what? We're going to win Wisconsin. We're going to get the White House. [cheers]
Just a few weeks later, Romney chose Paul Ryan to be his running mate, bringing an emotional Ryan to Waukesha.
Thank you, everybody! Thank you, Wisconsin! [cheers] It is good to be home. [cheers]
In the middle of all that, four republicans were trying to out-conservative each other in the primary race for the open U.S. Senate seat. In August, former Governor Tommy Thompson prevailed.
Ladies and gentlemen, Wisconsin is on a roll! [cheers]
That roll for Wisconsin republicans continued at the GOP convention in Tampa, where the state was in a position of honor, both in terms of the seats on the floor and speaking times on the stage. Governor Scott Walker proved that he was in fact a right wing rock star.
I'm Governor Scott Walker. [cheers]
And Paul Ryan accepted the nomination for Vice President.
I am honored by the support of this convention for Vice President of the United States.
A week later, Wisconsin democrats were not quite so prominent at their national convention, but U.S. Senate candidate Tammy Baldwin did find herself on stage in prime time to highlight her race against Tommy Thompson.
But come November, the Wisconsin I know, the America I love, will speak out loud and clear. [cheers]
As September turned to October, Wisconsin found itself a battleground state in the race for president, with first the vice president candidates touring the state, and then President Obama and Mitt Romney visiting at the end. Election night brought mixed results. Democrats cheered as President Obama won the state and Tammy Baldwin became the first female U.S. Senator in state history. Republicans were somber, but they picked up two State Senate seats, once again giving them complete control of state government for the next two years. 2012, a year when Wisconsin found itself in the national spotlight and made political history at home. [static]