Wisconsin will shine in political spotlight this year

With a population of about 5.7 million people in Wisconsin, it’s easy to get lost in the grand scope of things relative to other larger states.

This year, Wisconsin will get its day to shine. The state is going to play a major role in the politics of the United States.

We are on the cusp of a recall race for governor in Wisconsin. Once verified by the Government Accountability Board, the intensity of the campaign will dominate the media as well as advertisements ran on TV and radio.

Whether or not Gov. Scott Walker is re-elected, the country will be watching this race closely. It’s not every day a governor runs in a recall election, but the newness of the concepts which he has brought to Wisconsin are being reverberated nationwide.

Many states will see Walker’s recall election as a referendum of state worker’s collective bargaining rights.

With all the noise the recall election has made, it’s odd that there hasn’t been a rumble about the upcoming senate race. After unseating incumbent Russ Feingold in 2010, Ron Johnson helped the Republican party win a seat in Wisconsin. The party will go for sweep in Wisconsin this fall as they target the seat of retiring Democrat Sen. Herb Kohl.

There are already three big time candidates for the spot: U.S. Representative Tammy Baldwin (D) who is expected to win her party’s nomination for the spot, Speaker of the Wisconsin Assembly Jeff Fitzgerald (R) and former Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson (R).

While Fitzgerald is popular among conservatives, Thompson’s name recognition and financial strength of his campaign (announced he raised $656,000 in the last three months of 2011 on Jan. 31) may be too much for Fitzgerald to seize the party’s nomination.

Regardless of who runs, the country will be watching.

If the Republicans would manage to win the seat it would be the first time since 1949 that Republicans would hold both the seats for Wisconsin.

Wisconsin will also play a major role in the GOP’s primary election. The race has been a seesaw contest and all four candidates have stated they plan on staying in the race until the Republican National Convention on Aug. 27, 2012.

With Wisconsin’s primary date set for April 3, we could play a large role in helping decide who will be the GOP’s nominee in a tight race.

For the first time in the history of America, parents see a bleaker future for their children than the childhood’s they experienced. While we may just be a speck on the map, we will matter in this election. Be proud, the spotlight is finally on you Wisconsin.