GOP eyes supermajority, Democrats aim to ‘save the veto’ as focus shifts toward fall elections

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MADISON, Wis. (CBS 58) – With the August primary done and focus shifting toward November, state Republicans have an opportunity to flip enough seats in the Legislature to establish a veto-proof supermajority, something Democrats are hoping to prevent.

“It’s an uphill battle no question about it but that’s the goal,” Wisconsin GOP Executive Director Mark Jefferson said in an interview. “What we try to do is add seats every cycle, we’ve been pretty successful at that in the past but a lot of things would have to fall into place for that to happen.”

Currently, Republicans hold majorities in both the Assembly and Senate, but not enough for a veto-proof supermajority. In order to accomplish that, the GOP needs to hold its current seats and flip three seats in each chamber in the legislative races in November.

With that in mind, Democrats have launched an initiative called “Save the Veto” to support key races and prevent that from happening. A supermajority for Republicans next year would mean they would have full control in drawing favorable district maps that would be in place for the next decade.

“These are the seats that could make or break the Assembly or the Senate,” Phil Shulman, the Democratic Party of Wisconsin’s Director of Press Strategy told CBS 58. “So with that we’re making sure that these races have the resources to be competitive to make sure that the governor still has a veto when we’re drawing these maps in a couple of years and that’s really what we’re focused on.”

If Democrats successfully prevent Republicans from gaining enough seats for a supermajority, divided government is likely to continue in Wisconsin. For district maps, it means both parties are likely to present their own maps and leaving the issue up to the state Supreme Court, where conservatives hold a slim 4-3 majority.

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