Absentee voters came to the polls in strong numbers Monday as the first day of early voting started ahead of Wisconsin’s June 5 recall. By 8 a.m., voters were already waiting for the Wausau city clerk’s office to open. In Madison, a line stretched out the door at lunchtime. In Brookfield, the city clerk’s office saw steady traffic throughout the day. “We’re extremely, extremely busy,” Wausau City Clerk Toni Rayala said. “We had much more than we expected, and much faster.” Clerks statewide reported much higher absentee turnout Monday than in the spring presidential primary as well as the May 8 recall primary. Most said the turnout for absentee voters appeared to be on par with that for a typical November general election.
In-person absentee voting continues through June 1 for the recall races between GOP Gov. Scott Walker and Democratic challenger and Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, and the race between GOP Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch and Madison firefighter Mahlon Mitchell, a Democrat. Four Republican state senators also face recalls in districts around the state. “It’s a pretty good clip,” said Madison municipal clerk Eric Christianson, whose office processed more than 400 absentee voters before 3 p.m. Some made a point to visit the polls early because they believed they had a personal stake in the election.
Madison resident Dory Christensen, who immigrated to the United States in 1968, plans to visit in Colombia during the recalls but still feels “very strongly” about voting in the election. “I’ve always loved Wisconsin,” she said. “I’ve loved the principles, the people in this state, and I just think that that’s disappearing.” Others, like recent University of Wisconsin-Madison graduate Alex Slezewski, participated in the election because of its historic importance. But Slezewski, like many university officials and county clerks statewide, worries he may be one of the few students who bother to vote absentee in this election.
Full Article: Absentee voting begins for recall election – JSOnline.