Hopper, Olsen to face recalls

Oshkosh Common Councilor Jessica King will seek to replace state Sen. Randy Hopper, R–Fond du Lac, in a recall election that has yet to be scheduled.

King lost to Hopper by fewer than 200 votes in 2008.

In early April, volunteers submitted more than 22,500 signatures to the Government Accountability Board to recall Hopper over his support for Gov. Scott Walker’s elimination of government employees’ collective bargaining rights.

The marital problems of Hopper, a so-called “pro-family” conservative, could be a factor in the race. When pro-union protesters surrounded his Fond du Lac home in February, Hopper’s wife emerged to tell them he’d moved in with his much-younger mistress in Madison and no longer lived there. She also told reporters that she and her maid are supporting her husband’s recall.

A complaint filed against Hopper for living outside his district is currently under investigation by the Wisconsin Justice Department.

Volunteers working to recall Sen. Luther Olsen, R-Ripon, also filed recall petitions in April. Signatures to recall Sen. Dan Kapanke, R-La Crosse, were submitted last month.

Attempts are still underway to recall five additional Republican senators as well as eight Democrats who are being targeted for delaying a vote on the collective bargaining measure by hiding out in Illinois. So far no petitions have been filed against the Democrats.

– L.W.