Wisconsin Supreme Court Election Results

Polls have just closed in Wisconsin, where it's 8pm local time. The main event, of course, is the Supreme Court race, pitting incumbent David Prosser against JoAnne Kloppenburg.

Wisconsin Supreme Court Election ResultsThe polls close at 9 p.m. ET, 8 p.m. Madison time.

Madison city clerk Maribeth Witzel-Behl said 7,190 absentee ballots had already been submitted by Monday, outpacing the absentee count from the presidential primary of February 2008. While the ballots haven’t been counted, high turnout in the liberal city is likely to Kloppenburg’s benefit.

Witzel-Behl predicted a 60 percent turnout, which would be a record high for an April election since Madison started keeping records in 1984. Madison also has hotly contested mayoral and county executive races, but political observers suspect the statewide race is driving many voters’ passions…

While neither candidate’s campaign would discuss internal polling numbers, one political expert said the frenzied pace of last-minute spending suggested a tight race. Mordecai Lee, a professor at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, said groups usually cut their losses and save their money if polls show their candidate significantly behind.

To see how overtly Kloppenburg’s supporters have turned this race into a referendum on the collective bargaining law, check out Ann Althouse’s latest photo. It’s a case study in why electing judges is a bad idea. If Kloppenburg wins and shocks the world by voting to uphold the CB law, it’ll be a crushing betrayal of those who voted for her. If she does what’s expected and votes to strike it down, it’ll reinforce the ever-growing perception that judges are political hacks who do the bidding of their party. (Kloppenburg’s not really hiding her intentions, emphasizing in her speeches that she looks forward to being a check on the executive and legislative branches, hint hint.) That’s bad news for courts generally and for her individually, but I guess she’ll worry about that once she’s gotten her supreme court seat.

NRO’s Robert Costa, who’s been the blogosphere’s go-to guy for reporting on Wisconsin lately, says the key counties for Prosser are Brown, Racine, Milwaukee, and Outagamie. The Journal-Sentinel will be posting results here and Wisconsin Politics will likely be updating here. While we wait for numbers, go on over to Time’s new poll of the 100 most influential people this year and vote for, well, anyone besides the Fleebagger 14.