Signature verification underway for recalls involving Walker, 7 others

the WTMJ News Team

Signature verification underway for recalls involving Walker, 7 others

By the WTMJ News Team. CREATED Jan 18, 2012 - UPDATED: Jan 18, 2012

Click here to watch live streaming video of the GAB signature verification.

MADISON - Workers are beginning the process of scanning in signatures turned in to force recall elections in Wisconsin. 

The task is for Government Accountability Board workers to go through more than one million signatures, dropped off one box at a time at the GAB office in Madison.

State Democratic Party Chaimanr Mike Tate thinks the recall is needed because, "Scott Walker did not tell the truth to the people of Wisconsin, didn't talk about how he was going to govern," as Tate told Newsradio 620 WTMJ's "Wisconsin's Morning News."

"The people of Wisconsin have spoken.  Over one million citizens have said, 'We can't wait.  This guy is making moves that are absolutely against the grain of Wisconsin values.' "

Assembly Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, who faces a recall, says the collective bargaining changes for public employees were the only way to get the kind of concessions they needed from the state unions.

"I don't know that there would have been a way of soft-selling this to the unions, and they would have been more responsive," explained Fitzgerald on "Wisconsin's Morning News."

"I think we did what was in the interest of the taxpayers, which was eliminate the structural deficit, put the state back on track in terms of fairness and honesty when it comes to budgeting, and empower local elected officials to make these very difficult decisions."

Scene of celebration outside Government Accountbility Board office

It looked like a party outside of the GAB office in Madison.

Volunteers took each box off a U-Haul truck.

"I almost have a tear in my eye, I'm so happy," said Keith Roberts of Greendale.

"It was electric.  This was our Super Bowl.  This was our time to celebrate what we've done in the last 60 days," explained Tanya Lohr, who is from Washington County.

Democrats only needed 540,000 signatures to recall Gov. Walker, but claim they have clearly exceeded that by collecting more than one million signatures.

"The more than one million Wisconsinites represent an overwhelming threshold that is beyond any legal challenge," explained Ryan Lawler, the Vice Chair of United Wisconsin.

"You're going to need to disqualify nearly one in every three signatures we hand in," claimed Tate.

"It's simply not going to happen."

Volunteers celebrated just blocks away from the Governor's office.

"This is better than winning the Super Bowl," said Roberts.

Walker was out of state at a campaign fundraiser when the recall petitions were dropped off, but he told Newsradio 620 WTMJ that he was ready for the fight.

"Since last spring, you had the national unions saying they were going to come in, the government unions saying they were going to come in and do this, the statewide Democrat, the party officials, the activists, the operatives pushing this, and yet, they still couldn't get close the majority of voters in the state of Wisconsin.  A sign, it's a lot easier to sign a recall petition than it is to vote."