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Wisconsin’s Lt. Gov.: The GOP has tremendous groundwork advantage

Rebecca Kleefisch, who along with Scott Walker survived the Wisconsin recall election, details why the chances are good that Romney/Ryan may win the state’s 12 electoral votes.

TAMPA, Fla.â??The muscle flexed by Gov. Scott Walker in surviving a recall election, the selection of Paul Ryan as the vice presidential nominee, and the popularity of former Gov. and U.S. Senate nominee Tommy Thompson are all reasons that, for the first time in 24 years, Wisconsin will give its 12 electoral votes to the Republican presidential ticket his November.

Thatâ??s what the Badger Stateâ??s lieutenant governor predicted to Human Events. In an exclusive interview following her remarks to the tea party-backed Unity Rally here Sunday night, Rebecca Kleefisch — who survived a nationally-watched recall election along with ticketmate Walker — said that as a result of that election two months ago, â??we now have a tremendous advantage (over the Democrats) in groundwork in Wisconsin.â? Kleefisch also pointed to a recent CBS News poll showing Republicans with â??a 16 percentage point advantage in enthusiasmâ? over Democrats in her state.

Part of this enthusiasm among her fellow Republicans, Kleefisch told us, is Mitt Romney choosing Wisconsin Rep. Ryan as a running mate. She also pointed to the nomination of Thompson — still a beloved figure more than a decade after leaving the governorship — for the open Senate seat as a boost to the Romney-Ryan ticketâ??s chances in Wisconsin.

â??People are excited about Tommy,â? she explained. â??His name evokes memories of some great years in Wisconsin. He was a true reform governor, a leader in welfare reform and school choice. People recall a more prosperous time with Tommy.â? Polls show the 70-year-old Thompson leading liberal Democratic opponent Rep. Tammy Baldwin by margin of 5 to 10 percentage points statewide.

Discussing the unbroken 24-year history of Wisconsin giving its electoral votes to Democratic presidential nominees, Kleefisch noted that in 2004, â??the margin between George W. Bush and John Kerry was only about 11,000 votes. And that was at a time when Democrats controlled the statehouse. Now, Romney and Obama are squaring off two years after we won just about everything — the governorship, a U.S. Senate seat, lieutenant governor, attorney general, and control of the legislature.â?

Written By

John Gizzi has come to be known as â??the man who knows everyone in Washingtonâ? and, indeed, many of those who hold elected positions and in party leadership roles throughout the United States. With his daily access to the White House as a correspondent, Mr. Gizzi offers readers the inside scoop on whatâ??s going on in the nationâ??s capital. He is the author of a number of popular Human Events features, such as â??Gizzi on Politicsâ? and spotlights of key political races around the country. Gizzi also is the host of â??Gizziâ??s America,â? video interviews that appear on Gizzi got his start at Human Events in 1979 after graduating from Fairfield University in Connecticut and then working for the Travis County (Tex.) Tax Assessor. He has appeared on hundreds of radio and TV shows, including Fox News Channel, C-SPAN, America's Voice,The Jim Bohannon Show, Fox 5, WUSA 9, America's Radio News Network and is also a frequent contributor to the BBC -- and has appeared on France24 TV and German Radio. He is a past president of the Georgetown Kiwanis Club, past member of the St. Matthew's Cathedral's Parish Council, and secretary of the West End Friends of the Library. He is a recipient of the William A. Rusher Award for Journalistic Excellence and was named Journalist of the Year by the Conservative Political Action Conference in 2002. John Gizzi is also a credentialed correspondent at the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. He has questioned two IMF managing directors, Dominique Strauss-Kahn and Christine LaGarde, and has become friends with international correspondents worldwide. Johnâ??s email is JGizzi@EaglePub.Com