In my (otherwise non-political) interview with him this morning, I asked Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton to predict whether his next-door neighbor will remain Scott Walker. He did not hesitate in his answer.
“I think Walker will win,” Dayton said.
As I blogged yesterday, the race is tightening, but in the final analysis, I agree. My thought is that too many people–even those opposed to Walker’s tactics–will consider removal of a duly elected governor too radical a step, and will simply stay home. Walker’s supporters, on the other hand, are lit up and ready to rumble. I think they, and not Barrett’s folks, likely will prove the chief reason behind today’s massive turnout.
It is true that Barrett has a sizable contingent of voters, and that a lot of his supporters are equally motivated. I saw as many signs supporting Barrett as I saw for Walker driving through central and northern Wisconsin last week. It is also true that independents slightly favor Barrett.
But what I saw in my visit last week to Wisconsin—using the microscopic sample of my own family—is that the pro-Walker forces are far more agitated and aggrieved at this point than are the pro-Barrett forces. Tempers have cooled since the protests that I documented a year ago in my film “This is What Democracy Looks Like.” The public memory is short. People have adjusted to life sans collective bargaining. Some have forgotten why they were so angry in March of 2011.
I think the day will be Walker’s.