Wisconsin Governor Walker’s recall election ended early Tuesday night with margins so large they’re beyond “recount” territory.
After spending the day in Racine, Wisconsin — more on that later — I joined the Walker victory celebration. People streamed into the expo center where it was held, so many that Governor Walker quipped that they had to use overflow tents to “violate the fire code.”
Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch was the first to address the crowd, which had erupted into cheers around 9:00pm when it became clear that Walker and Kleefisch were sure winners.
Walker’s first words after taking the stage were, “I want to thank God for his abundant grace.”
In response, the crowd chanted in unison, “Thank you, Scott!”
Thanking Scott Walker is exactly what the people of Wisconsin showed they wanted to do, both at the ballot box and last night. For all the countless hours volunteers put into to ensuring Walker and the others stayed in office, the people of Wisconsin are overwhelmed with gratitude for what his strength and courage has meant for their state.
Many in the country, too, want to thank Scott Walker. He has been a leader among governors and as state after state faces fiscal crises, his bold leadership in the face of all the venom and might the union and leftist operatives could hurl at his person and office, is beyond commendation.
During his victory speech, Walker focused on what happens tomorrow and his plan for mending the ravaged Wisconsin political landscape. “Tomorrow we are no longer opponents,” he said. “Bringing our state together will take some time, but I want to start right away….with some brats and some burgers, to start, and maybe some good Wisconsin beer.”
The most poignant moment came when he recounted a recent trip to Philadelphia’s Independence Hall with the other state governors:
Standing in there it dawned on me, these [Founding Fathers] were ordinary people…they didn’t just risk their fame and fortune, the risked their lives for their country….in times of crisis what has made America amazing…is that there have been men and women of courage who have said…what is most important is to stand up, for their children and grandchildren…
Governor Walker and Lt. Governor Kleefisch are exactly the types of ordinary Americans that make our whole country seem extraordinary. What those two faced as the entire arsenal of the left was thrust against them is beyond what we ask of most elected officials. As his two high-school-aged sons stood on stage next to his wife, I couldn’t help but think what they must be enduring as their father goes up against the strongest unions in the world.
Scott Walker and Rebecca Kleefisch and countless other Americans are returning to the simple virtues of responsibility, freedom, sacrifice, and courage as they fulfill their duties. They prove that “ordinary” Americans are anything but, and that it is exactly their simple adherence to these American virtues that we are in need of today more than ever.
Tuesday was more than a referendum on fiscal responsibility, budgets, or even the courage of elected officials. It was a referendum on the character of our elected officials and whether we would continue to seek representatives of the people, or representatives of interest groups.
Thank you, Scott Walker, and all those who supported him, for clearing the path to reawaken our American self-reliance and strength. That will do more to repair division with Wisconsin and within our country than any special-interest payout ever could.