• WisPolitics


Monday, June 4, 2012

 7:40 PM 

Barrett says educators felt attacked last year


KENOSHA -- Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett drew on his wife's experience as a teacher as he made one of his final pushes to get voters to the polls tomorrow at an event at the local UAW hall.

Barrett said that in 21 years of marriage he had never seen his wife shaken until last year.

"Her vocation, not her job, her vocation was being attacked by this governor and his allies," Barrett told supporters.

He told reporters, "it feels great" to be just hours away from the polls opening.

"The energy I feel around the state is amazing, just amazing," Barrett said.

Barrett was joined at the rally by former U.S. Sen. Russ Feingold, Rep. Peter Barca, Sen. Bob Wirch, and labor leaders. Feingold said it was fitting to hold one of the final rallies of the campaign at a UAW hall, saying the building symbolized the working people of Wisconsin.

Feingold told reporters the race is more than just a rematch of the 2010 race.

"If it was a rematch it would be a different story," Feingold said. "It's after somebody attacked the basic rights of Wisconsinites, used ruthless tactics and basically divided this state. That's why we're having this recall."

The former senator pushed back on the notion that Dems have stopped campaigning against Act 10. He said that collective bargaining, voter ID, the John Doe investigation and other issues come up at nearly every event.

"It's all of these things. Each of them by itself is sufficient reason to remove Scott Walker from office," Feingold said.

The mayor continued to criticize Gov. Scott Walker for receiving funding from outside of Wisconsin, describing the final hours as a heavyweight boxing match. He said that in one corner was Walker with a stark fundraising advantage.

"And in this corner, we've got Tom Barrett and he's got you," Barrett said, gesturing to the audience as they broke out in applause.

On Walker's fundraising advantage, Feingold added: "It may have helped him for awhile, but in the end it's going to be his undoing."

Barrett also compared the race to a marathon, saying that it was now in the final 400 yards.

"This is when the quitters go home," Barrett said. "There isn't a quitter in this room."

The mayor continued to argue that the guv has tried to divide the state, but Barrett added that Walker would not be able to go further.

"Scott Walker will never conquer the middle class of this state," Barrett said.

He also pushed back on whether the race was a dry-run for November, deflecting questions about the national implications of the race.

"This a real-run for Wisconsin," Barrett said. "I know that there are people from outside this state, and I know that Governor Walker wants to make this a national election. That's his problem. This is and should be about the values of Wisconsin."

-- By Arthur Thomas

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