Democratic “placeholder” candidates will no longer run in this summer’s state Senate recall elections, the Wisconsin Democratic Party announced Friday.
The party said it will not file the final paperwork needed to be put placeholders on ballot in the six recall elections targeting Republican senators, including state Sen. Alberta Darling (R-River Hills).
The idea of using placeholder candidates came after Republicans decided to have “fake Democrats” to run in the Democratic primaries of the six recall elections targeting GOP senators. The move was designed to ensure that primary elections would be held in all six races to give the incumbents more time to prepare for the general election.
However, state Democrats feared some of the announced “fake” candidates would file their nomination papers in some races and not others. That left open the door to some of the GOP senators facing primaries on July 12 while others would run in the general election.
In order to avoid that happening, Democrats came up with placeholders — sacrificial candidates who would allow their names to be placed on the ballot to ensure that all six Republicans will face recall on the same day.
State Democratic Party Chairman said Friday, however, that with the primary and general elections schedules for the recalls set, the Democrats no longer need placeholder candidates.
“The goal of the placeholder candidacies was to create an insurance policy against further Republican attempts to exploit the recall election schedule through dirty tricks and cynical plots,” Tate said in a statement.