It seems that yet again, common sense is taking a backseat for Gov. Scott Walker’s opponents. Their newest outcry is over the governor’s request for two additional weeks to review the recall signatures. How is it that a reasonable, simple request was denied to review what may be considered to be the most controversial and fraudulent petition to date? It seems Walker’s opponents are revealing their desire to cover up the forged signatures and fictional addresses.
The recall signatures are about 150,000 pages. There are not thousands of signature verifiers to go through and make sure each name is legitimate with a legitimate address, so of course more time is needed. I would give the governor a whole year if that was what it took to make sure that democracy isn’t being trounced upon by those with an axe to grind. Others may point to the fact that Walker already requested another extension to review the signatures. The point mentioned above still stands. A two- week extension is a drop in the bucket. Walker’s previous request was also no where near the amount of time it would take to validate the signatures.
Simple fact: Time is needed to make sure this process is done right, without any lies or corruption.
It is possible to see Walker’s motivation for the extension as simply a desperate grab for more time. However, this is entirely false because there is no need for him to stall. He’s enacted the Legislature he hoped to create, so there is nothing major left for him to do in his tenure. The only advantage I can see Walker getting from more time is that we will be able to witness more jobs being created and kept in Wisconsin and the state economy recovering. Even then, this argument also falls flat, as two additional weeks is no where near time to move forward any other plans. Two weeks is an eye-blink in terms of the economy.
This isn’t about who is right and who is wrong, whatever your opinion or the opinions fed to you might be. This is about living in a place where democracy can work, where the will of the people is what decides how the government works. As we have seen here, it can be abused by those who believe they speak for the people. The recall process is a powerful tool, but is now being used by those who have no right to abuse it. I personally will accept the recall if each signature is legitimate and from a person who lives in Wisconsin, with each person signing only once (if at all). However, with such a short amount of time to verify signatures, we’re not ever going to be sure if this is the case.
Fraudulent recall signatures means power can be taken away from us, the people. We don’t have to stand for this. We can support the validation efforts so that democracy won’t be suspect in the future. Why the opposition to the validation? There shouldn’t be any reason to worry if there is nothing to hide.
Vincent Borkowski ([email protected]) is a junior majoring in neurobiology.