The grassroots effort to recall Gov. Scott Walker and Lieutenant Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch, rebuking their conservative agenda that was highlighted by controversial collective bargaining reform, commenced this morning throughout the state.
In Greenfield, the effort began with a homegrown petition signature campaign in a driveway of an ordinary ranch house in front of a minivan.
"I can't think of a more important thing to do that to defend democracy," said Carol Carlin as she sat on a blue cooler and leaned on a table where clipboards held blank petition forms ready to be signed by passersby.
"That is what this is. A right to vote, the importance of an educated citizenry is core central to how a democracy works," she said as she instructed the first signer on how to correctly fill out the petition form. "This is where the fight for democracy stands right now in the state of Wisconsin."
Recall petitioners have 60 days from today to gather 540,000 signatures for each Walker and Kleefisch. Calls for Walker and Kleefisch recalls begin in February after the governor and the Republican-led legislature proposed a measure that eliminates collective bargaining rights for public employees, except firefighters and police officers.
The proposed reform set off a , where hundreds of thousands gathered to voice their frustration with the reform. Act 10, which contains the controversial collective bargaining measure, .
Although the driving force behind the recall effort is Walker's collective bargaining reform, it is also a rejection of the entire conservative agenda that has been forwarded by Republican lawmakers in Madison, according to Janelle Pegoraro, who was the first person to sign a petition in front of Carlin's home.
"I just don't like his policies," she said after signing.
From jobs and commuter rail to education, Pegoraro said she has been unhappy with many of Walker's policies.
"You can't pull over a billion dollars from schools and not have it effect every family in the state of Wisconsin let alone the very core of our democracy," said Carlin whose home faces .
As petition signers began arriving, a woman drove by and screamed from her four-by-four.
"You guys should stop that. He's a great governor and he's done everything great for this state," said proclaimed as she drove slowing with her window rolled down. "I have a kid in public schools and you guys are wrong."
Carlin, who lives in the 6900 block of West Coldspring Road, expects to be in front of her house gathering signatures from today through next Wednesday.