Lt. Gov Rebecca Kleefisch, still fresh from her recall victory in June, gave the closing address at Smart Girl Summit held this past weekend. She joked with the crowd stating that when she addressed the summit last year, many were doubtful she would have a job in the coming months. However, she said she would have come back as “a martyr”. She is the first Lt. Governor in American history to survive a recall election. When you turn a $3.6 billion dollar deficit into a $154 million dollar surplus, reform collective bargaining, pensions, health care, take on the special interests, and add 20,000 new jobs, you most certainly deserve to keep your job. Yet, these initiatives were anathema to the liberals in the Badger State who apparently are hesitant to support anything that is efficient of fiscally sound.
Lt. Gov. Kleefisch was adamant that she wasn’t going to kick the can down the road and it was the unions, not the Walker administration, that picked the fight to keep the status quo. We all remember the army of left wing protestors that stormed Madison with their horns, signs, chants, and sleeping bags. It was a nice display of Bolshevik theater. The Left detailed doomsday scenarios if the Walker/Kleefisch reforms were enacted. In the end, they were and the sky didn’t fall. Furthermore, the people of Wisconsin were left with the hotel bills the fourteen Democratic senators racked up when they fled the state and neglected their duty as public officials when they protested the reforms to collective bargaining in 2011.
It was the beginning of a chaotic year. In 2011, eight recall elections were held to determine the majority of the state senate. In 2012, six recall elections were held, including the races for Governor and Lt. Governor, to determine the future of Wisconsin. At the end of the night, the voters of the Badger state were clear that they wanted Gov. Walker, Lt. Gov. Kleefisch, and the Republicans to continue their leadership and bring the state back to fiscal sanity and economic vigor.
In all, Lt. Gov. Kleefisch stated that their reforms at the state and municipal level saved the Wisconsin taxpayer $800 million dollars. They became the 49th state to pass conceal and carry and Voter ID laws. She concluded that we should’t be afraid to fight and do what is right in government. When you have the courage of your convictions and do the right thing, the voters will have your back. What makes Lt. Gov Kleefisch’s victory so fulfilling is that she was willing to lose for what she believed in and ended up winning for what she believed in. All I can say is that we need more women, like Rebecca Kleefisch, in public service.