In the upcoming recall election against Republican Gov. Scott Walker, Wisconsin faces the first ever gubernatorial recall in the state, and only the third gubernatorial recall in the country’s history. Next to the presidential campaign it will likely be the biggest, most expensive race in the country, costing $100 million or more — and that’s just for one state, compared to the whole country. In last year’s state Senate recalls, when six Republicans and three Democratic incumbents were put on the ballot — with control of the 33-seat chamber officially up for grabs — nearly $44 million was spent on those nine races, between the candidates, their political parties, and the various third-party ad groups on both sides. So how much will it be worth everyone’s while, with the whole governorship itself, plus four additional Republican state Senate seats, all on the line?
TPM asked Walker campaign spokeswoman Ciara Matthews whether the campaign had any estimate of what the total spending on the race might be. “You know, that’s a good question, and I can honestly say no,” said Matthews. “I mean, because there are just kind of a number of factors that are gonna play into it – the Democratic primary, and how, I guess it’s not a question of if the national public employee unions are gonna get involved, but the extent, how much.”
Similarly, activists on the pro-recall side are uncertain, and are blaming Walker’s own backers for the big money that’s about to come in. But they also have some rough idea of a dollar figure.