With a recall election just weeks away, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker is fairing well in the polls and on social media. But his Democratic challenger, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett is seeing a slight jump in support on Facebook in the days following the May 8 primary.
After a nasty battle over collective bargaining rights in 2011, Democrats began a campaign to recall Walker, who had only taken office in January 2011. A year after he was inaugurated, enough signatures had been gathered to host a recall election on June 5 of this year. Walker now faces Barrett, who won the May 8 primary.
One thing is clear in the days following the primary, Barrett has some catching up to do. Walker is wildly popular nation-wide among Tea Party activist and anti-Tax groups. Because of that national recognition, Walker is sitting with more than 83,000 “likes” on Facebook. Barrett on the other hand has about 26,000.
However, there is still a lot of time before the recall election and Barrett is already seeing a sudden spike in support (mostly because there aren't other Democrats stealing the spotlight now that the primary is over). According to Barrett's Facebook page, the Democrat is seeing a spike in support: averaging about 3,000 new fans over a week-long period. Walker, on the other hand, hasn't seen any major spikes in traffic, averaging about 1,000 new fans a week.
However, the totals do generally represent reality: according to actual poll data, Walker is ahead by nine points.
As you might expect, Walker's Facebook wall has become a hotbed of discussion about the recall—even something as simple as a note recognizing Mother's Day was a lightning rod for the topic. Of the hundreds of comments on the post from Sunday, most commented on the recall, usually in not-so-polite language.
“WOW! Such hatred on Mothers Day. If you don't agree with our Gov. thats fine...but to post hate stuff like that on his Mothers Day post shows a true lack of civility. You haters are a sad bunch to post this on such a loving day! shame on you!” wrote Jill Mohnen Hartjes.
But there were also messages of support mixed in with the haters: “We stand behind you and your family. The real working class that pay their fair share. Enjoy the day with your family!” wrote Bret Kobiske.
Photo via Facebook