Judge grants extension for GAB review, sets recall election dates

MADISON -- Voters will likely go the polls on May 8 and June 5 in recall elections for Governor Scott Walker, Lt. Governor Rebecca Kleefisch and four republican state senators.

In a hearing in Dane County court, Judge Richard Niess, granted an extension to the GAB, so workers can finish the review of the Walker petitions. "We are here on the Government Accountability Board's request for extension of time to certify the sufficient or insufficient recall petitions. I think it's clearly in the public interest and I appreciate consul working together to make this happen," Judge Niess said Wednesday.

The GAB now has an additional 11 days to complete the petition review. "We wanted to make sure we did our job, and did it thoroughly," GAB President Kevin Kennedy said.

The GAB is nearly done reviewing signatures, but is completing the tedious process of looking for duplicate signatures. "We're happy with the deadline, because it's a deadline," Jeremy Levinson, lawyer for the recall petitioners said.

The review of the petition to recall Governor Scott Walker will be completed by March 30th. On that date, the GAB will certify the elections for governor, lieutenant governor and four Republican senators.

This means primary elections will take place May 8th and the general election on June 5th. For races with no primaries, the general election will be held on May 8th.

"The big win here is for the taxpayers in the state of Wisconsin. All of the elections will occur at the same time, so we're not spending millions of extra dollars to do elections one after the other, after the other," Joe Olson, GOP lawyer said.

There is a change that the legal wrangling isn't over yet. The office-holders will have seven days after the date the elections are officially certified by the GAB to file challenges, taking issue with the certification. However, that doesn't seem likely at this point, as Governor Walker and other candidates have said they want the elections to take place as soon as possible.