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Recall Election Information

Recall Manual for Congressional, County and State Officials

Posted in
Date: 
June 22, 2009
Summary: 
Information about the laws of Wisconsin regarding recall of officials
AttachmentSize
Recall Manual for Congressional, County and State Officials 6-22-09.pdf1.72 MB

Recall Manual for Local Officials

Date: 
June 1, 2009
Summary: 
Information about the laws of Wisconsin regarding recall of local elected officials.
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Recall of Local Elected Officials Manual 2009-06.pdf4.3 MB

2012 Recall Initiatives

G.A.B. workers scan recall petitionsThe Government Accountability Board ordered recall elections for Governor, Lieutenant Governor and four members of the State Senate, based on the six recall petitions filed on January 17, 2012 against those officeholder. 

Recall primaries were held May 8, 2012. Primary results are available here.

Recall elections were held June 5, 2012.  Results of the recalls elections are available here.

For information about the individual recall committees and officeholders, please see the table below.

For updates on the recall process, read the Recall Blog.

Memo to Legislators: Answers Common Questions about Recall Petition Review

Memo to JCF Requesting Funds for Recall Petition Processing

 

2012 Recall Petitions

In Wisconsin, election petitions have always been public records, and in the interest of transparency, the Government Accountability Board continued that tradition by posting copies of the petitions online. 

Recall petitions were removed from the website in early 2013 because the recall process is complete.  They are still available in electronic format by making a public records request.  The cost is $40 for four DVDs containing all the petitions in PDF form.  Send requests and make checks payable to: Government Accountability Board, PO Box 7984, Madison, WI 53707-7984.

2012 Recall Committees

For more information about each recall committee, including copies of registration, petitions and challenges as they are filed, please click on its name.

Officeholder Committee Name GAB-1 Filing Date Signatures Required Date Petitions Filed Estimated Number of Signatures Valid Number of Signatures (at least) *
Scott Walker Committee to Recall Walker November 15, 2011 540,208 January 17, 2012 1,000,000 900,939
Rebecca Kleefisch Committee to Recall Kleefisch November 15, 2011 540,208 January 17, 2012 845,000 808,990
Scott Fitzgerald Committee to Recall Scott Fitzgerald November 15, 2011 16,742 January 17, 2012 20,600 18,282
Van Wanggaard Committee to Recall Wanggaard November 15, 2011 15,353 January 17, 2012 24,000 19,142
Terry Moulton Committee to Recall Moulton November 15, 2011 14,958 January 17, 2012 21,000 18,657
Pam Galloway Recall Senator Pam Galloway November 15, 2011 15,647 January 17, 2012 21,000 18,511

Recall of the Governor

Like all other public officials, the Governor and Lieutenant Governor of Wisconsin are not eligible for recall until they have served at least one year in the current term of office.  An official who has been recalled and survived a recall election cannot be recalled again during his or her current term in office.

The number of signatures required to trigger a recall election for Governor and/or Lieutenant Governor is one-quarter votes cast for Governor in last gubernatorial election.

Cost Estimates for 2012 Recall Elections

Posted in
Date: 
January 18, 2012
Summary: 
Information provided to the Legislature
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Letter to Representative Vos (Estimated Cost of a 2012 Statewide Recall Election - 01 06 2012).pdf235.04 KB
County Recall Cost Estimates.xlsx23.96 KB
Muni Recall Cost Estimates.xlsx187.99 KB

The county spreadsheet contains data from all 72 counties.  Of the 1,850 municipalities, 143 did not respond by the time the report was finalized on Friday afternoon, January 6. 

2011 Recall Information

Click here for information about the 2011 State Senate recall efforts, including copies of the petitions.

About Recalls in Wisconsin

Recall gives voters the right to reconsider their choice of an elected official; however, it does not automatically result in removal of an official from office. It provides an opportunity for voters to require an elected official to run for office again before the expiration of his or her term.

An official must be in office for one year before a recall can be initiated. 

The number of signatures required to trigger a recall is one-quarter of the number of votes cast for governor in the most recent gubernatorial election. 

The requirements for initiating recall efforts are very specific and must be carefully followed.  Please consult the recall manuals below.

The Government Accountability Board is providing information about the number of signatures required to trigger a recall in certain Senate districts in response to numerous requests from the public about the subject.  Anyone considering conducting a recall petition effort should contact the G.A.B. staff at 608-266-8005.

Click here for information about the 2011 State Senate Recalls.

Information about Recall Committees

Recall committees that have registered with the Government Accountability Board are listed in the Campaign Finance Information System (CFIS).

To find them, go to CFIS and click "View Registrants" on the left-side menu.  Click "Continue," which will take you to the search screen.  In the upper left-hand corner, use the pull-down menu for "Registrant Type" to select "Recall," and click "Search."

To view the GAB-1 Campaign Registration form, click on the committee name.

Campaign finance reports filed by recall committees are viewable on CFIS.

Recall Petitions: Meaning of "Offered for Filing" and Requirement for Dates for Each Signature

Government Accountability Board staff have received numerous inquiries regarding the meaning of “offer to file” a recall petition and clarification of signature date requirements on recall petition sheets.  In addition, the Board has started receiving individual original recall petition sheets from circulators, likely not part of an organized recall effort. This Memorandum shall provide further clarification in response to these inquiries and concerns.

Determination of Sufficiency of Recall Petitions

Posted in
Date: 
January 9, 2012
Summary: 
Procedures for recall petition reviewers
AttachmentSize
Determination of Sufficiency of Recall Petitions.pdf246.9 KB
Determination of Sufficiency of Recall Petitions (Appendix A).pdf1.88 MB

Attorney General Opinion on Recall of Governor and Lt. Governor

Posted in
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OAG-4-11.pdf336.99 KB

Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen issued Opinion 4-11 on November 3, 2011, regarding whether, in a recall election for governor, there must be an election of governor and lieutenant governor jointly under article V, section 3 of the Wisconsin Constitution, regardless of whether there has been a recall petition for the lieutenant governor under article XIII, section 12 of the Wisconsin Constitution.

Circulating Recall Petitions at a Polling Place

The Government Accountability Board has provided guidance for voters, local election officials and recall petition circulators for Election Day.  Click here to read.

Recall Expense Funds: Contribution Limits and Residual Funds

Date: 
March 15, 2011
Summary: 
Memo explaining campaign finance rules for recall committees

Circulating Recall Petitions in Public Buildings

Posted in
Date: 
March 3, 2011
Summary: 
Guidance for public employees and private individuals circulating recall petitions

Votes Cast for Governor, November 2010

Click here for a spreadsheet of the votes cast for Governor, which can be used to calculate the number of signatures required for a recall petition.