Vox Sentences: A recount in Wisconsin?

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A tight race for the Wisconsin Supreme Court; Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika steps down.


Wisconsin remains a battleground state

 Darren Hauck/Getty Images
  • A tight race in Wisconsin’s Supreme Court election appears to be a victory for Republican Brian Hagedorn — although it could head to a recount. It’s a worrying sign for Democrats, who have been on a winning streak in the past two years in a state that’s seen as a must-win in 2020. [AP / Scott Bauer]
  • Liberal candidate Lisa Neubauer trailed behind Hagedorn by less than 1 percent, qualifying her for a recount, as long as she pays for it. Neubauer has refused to concede and has begun fundraising to finance the recount. [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel / Patrick Marley and Molly Beck]
  • If Hagedorn’s victory holds after the possible recount, the conservative majority would increase to 5-2, giving liberals little hope of gaining a majority in the near future. [AP / Scott Bauer]
  • Democrats had just gained an extra seat on the Wisconsin Supreme Court last spring. That victory was seen as a bright spot for the party in a state where they’d been struggling. [Vox / Andrew Prokop]
  • After Democrat Tony Evers’s victory over incumbent Scott Walker during last year’s gubernatorial race, Democrats had continued to have high hopes for the state. [NYMag / Eric Levitz]
  • Hagedorn was criticized during the campaign for comparing homosexuality to bestiality and calling Planned Parenthood a “wicked organization.” These attacks may have helped him, however, by sparking support from those who agreed with him and felt demoralized by liberals. [National Review / John McCormack]
  • The close election underlines one important point: Wisconsin will remain a closely divided and unpredictable battleground state in the 2020 presidential elections. [NBC News / Chuck Todd, Mark Murray, and Carrie Dann]

Algeria’s president steps down

  • Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika resigned earlier than expected on Tuesday night after peaceful protests erupted in the streets. The calls for Bouteflika to step down started in February, when the 82-year-old declared he would run for a fifth term as president. The people protested against the decision and called for a government change. [BBC]
  • Bouteflika has rarely appeared in public since he had a stroke six years ago, but he appeared on the state-run station Algeria Press Service to announce his resignation. [NYT / Adam Nossiter]
  • Due to his poor health, people had begun to question whether he was actually the one making decisions. [CNN / Hamdi Alkhshali and Caitlin Hu]
  • The Algerian people took to the streets to celebrate the announcement, waving flags and chanting for victory. The next elections have been postponed because of the sudden news; the upper house of parliament will rule for 90 days until elections take place. [Guardian / Ruth Michaelson]
  • Hundreds of students demonstrated not just for Bouteflika’s resignation but also for the replacement of the political system. They want a new system with new reforms, but because there aren’t any well-established opposition parties, it is unclear how the constitution will change (if at all) in the upcoming elections. [Al Jazeera]

Miscellaneous

  • Although eliminating Super PACs is an emerging rallying point for 2020 Democratic contenders, prominent black donors argued this would alienate candidates of color, who have a harder time raising money. [Politico / Maggie Severns]
  • A large number of older people lack digital literacy, making them more vulnerable to fake news and hyperpartisan clickbait. [BuzzFeed / Craig Silverman]
  • A Justice Department concluded that male inmates in Alabama have routinely been subjected to violence and sexual abuse. The conditions within the prisons are so terrible that they could be classified as cruel and unusual punishment, the report said. [USA Today / Kevin Johnson and Kristine Phillips]
  • There’s a lucrative black market for Trader Joe’s products on Amazon — where, if you don’t live near a store, you can pay $10 for tea that normally costs $3. [Refinery29 / Eliza Brooke]

Verbatim

“I ran this race saying my commitment is to the rule of law. The job of the judge is to say what the law is and not what I think the law should be. I think that won last night.” [Brian Hagedorn during his Wisconsin Supreme Court victory speech Wednesday morning]


Watch this: Why Tucker Carlson pretends to hate elites

Why would Tucker Carlson, who used to brag about being an “out-of-the-closet elitist,” use his primetime Fox News show to rail against the “ruling class”? [YouTube / Carlos Maza and Madeline Marshall]


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