4th District re-elects Gwen Moore

  • As polls came to a close Wednesday morning, the only thing on the Milwaukee county ballot that was even close was the Milwaukee County Sales Tax Referendum
  • Every person running for office ran opposed except for one person
  • Barack Obama basically ran unopposed in the City of Milwaukee as he received over 76 percent of the vote
  • Overall, everything went smoothly at the polls around Milwaukee

Congresswoman Gwen Moore was officially re-elected to her third term in her Fourth District position early Wednesday morning. Moore was the only person on the Milwaukee County ballot who ran opposed.

While Moore won by a landslide, receiving 88 percent of the vote over independent Michael D. LaForest, it was Moore's reaction to Sen. Barack Obama winning the state of Wisconsin she sincerely seemed excited about.

"It's over, it's over!" Moore yelled as she ran around with tears in her eyes. "This shows this blue collar state really got it. People believe Obama cares about ordinary people like them. He identifies with them and he's going to get the job done."

Moore said she thinks Obama, who won Wisconsin by earning about 56 percent of the vote, has what it takes to be a great president.

"He has inherited some problems," Moore said. "A terrible economy, two wars, terrible military situations on the horizons, global warming, but he was born for such a time."

Moore also seemed to look forward to working through the democratic-controlled Congress.

"Certainly I don't think a president like Obama is going to just role over for a liberal agenda," Moore said. "I'm excited about having a working majority."

Moore has even more to celebrate now that the Milwaukee Paid Sick Leave Referendum was overwhelmingly passed with 68 percent of the vote. Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, who believed it would cost the city jobs, heavily opposed the bill.

Since the referendum was passed on the ballot, Moore has stood behind paid sick days.

"About half of all workers nationwide have no paid sick days," Moore said in a press release. "So when they get sick, they cannot afford to miss work and they drag themselves in anyways, infecting other coworkers who in turn spread it to others."

While the entire Milwaukee County ballot was made up of either a blow out or unopposed race, the Milwaukee County Sales Tax Referendum was only just approved by receiving 57 percent of the vote.

As listed on the ballot, now that this referendum has been passed, Wisconsin will grant Milwaukee County the authority to add an additional 1 percent to the county sales tax which will go towards, parks recreation culture, transit and emergency medical services. This 1 percent will provide $67 million dollars of tax relief annually.

Neil Albrecht, executive director of the City of Milwaukee Board of Election, said he was very satisfied with how the election was run in Milwaukee.

"At around 10:30 p.m. a majority of our wards have reported in," Albrecht said. "There have been no problems at any of our sites as to closing our sites or transmitting the election results to the central processing center."

Albrecht, who has been standing in for Susan Edman since she broke her hip, explained how long it took to make the Milwaukee balloting process work as smoothly as possible.

"Preparation for the election of office starts a good year before the election," Albrecht said. "We all work long hours through the summer particularly in the months prior to the election."

As Milwaukee's polls came to a close, some people were surprised to see the results in Milwaukee, as well as Wisconsin overall.

Barrett McCormick, a professor of political science, said he was surprised about Obama's large victory in Milwaukee, which earned about 76 percent of the vote.

"I think people not just in Milwaukee, but Wisconsin, thought Obama would do a better job with the economy and there was skepticism in (Sarah) Palin," McCormick said.

While McCormick said he was surprised about the blowout by Obama in Milwaukee, he was very happy about the victory by Moore, who helped support a petition he helped organize at Marquette a few years ago. Not long after she received the petition she was arrested for protesting on the steps of the Sudanese Embassy in Washington, D.C.

"When she was escorted to the police car she told a reporter she was inspired to act by the students at her alma mater at MU," McCormick said. "She is a good friend to Marquette."

Rosemary Lane contributed to this report.