A good piece Monday by Byron York in the Washington Examiner describing how conservatives are being out-organized and outspent by labor unions and the usual Democrat suspects in Wisconsin in the wake of GOP success in reigning in public sector unions:
Unions vs. the little guy in Wisconsin recall fightTea Party Enthusiasm Often No Match in Tight Contests
By Byron York
March 14, 2011
...Local and national labor organizations, enraged by the successful Republican effort to limit the collective bargaining powers of public employees unions, are pouring money and manpower into petitions to recall GOP state senators. At the same time, Republican drives to recall runaway Democrats, while rich in volunteer spirit, are working with far less money and organized support.
On the Democratic side are the AFL-CIO, the big public worker unions, party organizations and activist groups like MoveOn.org, which have already raised millions of dollars online. On the Republican side are a few Tea Party groups, taxpayer organizations and not a lot more.
Wisconsin law requires recall petitioners to gather thousands of signatures before an actual election is held. The specific number, based on voting in the most recent elections, is different for each district but ranges from about 15,000 to 22,000.
That's where the organizing strength of the AFL-CIO and its unions come in. Labor and its Democratic allies realize that Wisconsin is a critical battle and are desperate to make sure other states do not follow Wisconsin's lead. Republicans, meanwhile, seem less aware of the stakes.
"If Republicans do not take this very seriously, they could be in trouble here," says Steve Baas of the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce, which supports Walker's budget reforms.
One problem with the folks on the conservative side is that once we win an election we think that's the end of it. But the left never gives up. Not even after the "shellacking" they took last November. They simply took that defeat as a challenge to work even harder. And as we have seen in Wisconsin they are willing to say or do ANYTHING to get their way.
As much as I admire and respect the contributions of local Tea Parties with their volunteer enthusiasm and dedication it's often not enough to overcome the systemic organizational advantages of the professional protesting class who work hand in glove with the Democrat Party.
In 2010 we lost elections for Senate in both Nevada and Colorado where the polls showed GOP candidates Buck (CO) and Angle(NV) with slight leads at the end. A large part of our defeat in both races was the permanent union and progressive organization working behind the scenes. As one Colorado analyst pointed out: "Tea Party enthusiasm is no substitute for well-organized political movement infrastructure."
Protecting conservative gains in 2010 is absolutely vital as we gear up for 2012. To do so will take both organization and money. The Democrats have launched a national effort to overturn the victory of 2010. If we fail to counter their move with a fully funded and well organized national campaign we will pay for it in 2012. If Democrats succeed in overturning the gains in states like Wisconsin then all bets are off for defeating Obama in 2012.