Go to HHH home page.
Smart Politics
 


Kloppenburg Vote Tally Largest in WI History for Contested Supreme Court Race

Bookmark and Share

Both candidates break old state record by nearly 77,000 votes; Kloppenburg total still eclipsed by four others in uncontested elections

[Update (7:30 pm): While vote totals fluctuate throughout the coming days (with incumbent Prosser now in the lead at the end of Thursday), the end result remains that the winner of this race will end up with the largest vote total in a contested race in state history].

Despite a record number of voters casting their ballots in Wisconsin's Supreme Court election on Tuesday, the closeness of the race will keep whichever candidate emerges the victor from the (likely) recount far shy of netting the highest vote tally in state history for this office.

Although history will still have been made.

A Smart Politics review of Wisconsin electoral records finds that the vote for Assistant Attorney General JoAnne Kloppenburg ranks fifth all time for raw ballots received, although first for a contested race.

(Note: This report examines only raw votes and does not adjust for the changes in voting-age population over the decades).

Kloppenburg had an unofficial total of 740,090 heading into Wednesday evening with incumbent David Prosser at 739,886.

The candidate who can claim the most votes ever received for a state Supreme Court election is Leo Hanley, who notched 884,421 votes in April of 1968.

Wisconsin had approximately 1.3 million fewer total residents at that time.

Hanley, however, won his seat uncontested in what was also a presidential election year.

Democratic voters in the Badger State were backing Eugene McCarthy, with (recently withdrawn) Lyndon Johnson, Robert Kennedy, Hubert Humphrey, and George Wallace all appearing on the presidential preference ballot.

Over 733,000 Wisconin residents voted in the Democratic primary that April.

Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, and Harold Stassen were candidates on the Republican side, with Nelson Rockefeller and George Romney also both receiving thousands of write-in votes. Nearly 490,000 Wisconsinites voted in the GOP race.

After Hanley, the next three largest vote tallies ever received by Supreme Court candidates in Wisconsin also came in unchallenged races:

· William Grant Callow in 1987 with 836,637 votes.
· William Bablitch in 1993 with 779,284 votes.
· George Currie in 1957 with 757,065 votes.

With a cumulative vote tally in the Supreme Court race flirting with 1.5 million, Tuesday's election set an all time Wisconsin record for the raw number of votes in a Supreme Court contest.

Previous bests all took place during presidential election years: 1.32 million in 1980 (won by Donald Steinmetz), 1.16 million in 1976 (Roland Day), and 1.04 million in 1964 (Horace Wilkie).

Prior to Tuesday, the single largest number of votes recorded by a single candidate in a contested Supreme Court election was 663,378 - turned in by Steinmetz in 1980. Runner-up Louis Ceci won 658,605 votes in that race.

Kloppenburg - and Prosser - each bested that mark by nearly 77,000 votes.

Follow Smart Politics on Twitter.

Previous post: Which States Have the Most Split-Ticket Voting in Presidential-U.S. Senate Election Cycles?
Next post: Fortune Cookie Politics: Bachmann Delivers Budget Message to Obama from the Chinese

Leave a comment


Remains of the Data

Plurality-Winning Governors Elected At Century-Long High Water Mark

The rate of gubernatorial candidates elected without the support of a majority of voters is at its highest level since the 1910s.

Political Crumbs

Seeing Red

Congressman Nick Rahall's failed bid for a 20th term in West Virginia this cycle, combined with a narrow loss by Nick Casey to Alex Mooney in Shelley Moore Capito's open seat, means that West Virginia Democrats will be shut out of the state's U.S. House delegation for the first time in over 90 years. The Republican sweep by two-term incumbent David McKinley in the 1st CD, Mooney in the 2nd, and Evan Jenkins over Rahall in the 3rd marks the first time the GOP has held all seats in the chamber from West Virginia since the Election of 1920. During the 67th Congress (1921-1923) all six seats from the state were controlled by the GOP. Since the Election of 1922, Democrats have won 76 percent of all U.S. House elections in the Mountain State - capturing 172 seats compared to 54 for the GOP.


Home Field Advantage?

When the 114th Congress convenes in a few days, Maine will be represented by one home-grown U.S. Representative: Waterville-born Republican Bruce Poliquin. With the departure of Millinocket-born Mike Michaud, who launched a failed gubernatorial bid, the Pine Tree State was poised to send a House delegation to D.C. without any Maine-born members for the first time since 1821. Three-term U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree (born in Minnesota) coasted to reelection as expected, however Poliquin edged Kentucky-born Emily Cain by 5.3 points to keep the streak alive. Since 1876, a total of 208 of the 222 candidates elected to the nation's lower legislative chamber from the state have been born in Maine, or 94 percent.


more POLITICAL CRUMBS

Humphrey School Sites
CSPG
Humphrey New Media Hub

Issues />

<div id=
Abortion
Afghanistan
Budget and taxes
Campaign finances
Crime and punishment
Economy and jobs
Education
Energy
Environment
Foreign affairs
Gender
Health
Housing
Ideology
Immigration
Iraq
Media
Military
Partisanship
Race and ethnicity
Reapportionment
Redistricting
Religion
Sexuality
Sports
Terrorism
Third parties
Transportation
Voting