Canvass Discovers Huge Error in Waukesha County, Justice Prosser Now Has Large Lead

MacIver News Service | April 7, 2011

[Waukesha, Wisc…] The statewide canvass currently underway in 72 counties has provided several swings back and forth in the vote totals for the Wisconsin Supreme Court race. But a revelation announced this afternoon in Waukesha County may be a game changer. Waukesha County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus released the official numbers showing incumbent Justice David Prosser received 92,263 votes in the county, while his challenger Joanne Kloppenburg had 32,758. That netted Prosser 7,582 votes when compared to the initial tally reported Tuesday night.

The most significant discovery involved the results from the City of Brookfield. All the votes for Brookfield were not reported by the County Clerk to the State of Wisconsin Government Accountability Board. All of the City’s 14,315 votes were not included in the results sent to the state, 10,859 of them for Prosser.

“This was human error, which is common,” Nickolaus said at a press conference this afternoon. “I apologize.”

While the changes in the Waukesha County canvass was clearly the largest swing witnessed during the day, it was not the only one.

Democratic Party of Waukesha County Vice Chair Ramona Kitzinger participated in the canvass and said she was satisfied that this was an honest error by the Republican Nickolaus, and involved reporting, not the actual counting or handling of ballots.

“We went over everything and made sure the numbers jibed up and they did,” Kitzinger said. “We’re satisfied that it’s correct.”

The embattled County Clerk appreciated Kitzinger’s support.

“I’m thankful that this error was caught early in the process and during the canvass,” Nickolaus said. “The purpose of the canvass is to catch these kinds of errors.”

County – Net Change Following Canvass

Brown: +1 Prosser
Buffalo: +2 Kloppenburg
Burnett: +34 Prosser
Dane: +20 Kloppenburg outside city of Madison,
Dane: Madison: +15 Kloppenburg in city Madison with canvass approximately 60% complete
Door: +12 Kloppenburg
Grant County: +113 Kloppenburg
Iowa: +30 Kloppenburg
Kenosha: +60 Prosser
La Crosse County: +10 Prosser
Lafayette +14 Kloppenburg
Langland +5 Kloppenburg
Lincoln County +3 Prosser
Manitowoc – 10 Kloppenburg
Milwaukee: + 12 Prosser, with process continuing
Ozaukee: +1 Prosser
Pepin County: +6 for Prosser,
Portage County: +91 Prosser
Rusk County: +31 Kloppenburg
Shawano County: +64 Prosser
Taylor County: +2 Prosser
Vernon: +24 Kloppenburg
Washburn: +5 Kloppenburg
Washington: +1 Prosser
Waupaca: +1 Prosser
Waukesha: +7,582 Prosser
Winnebago +244 Prosser

With the statewide canvass still ongoing, Justice Prosser’s unofficial lead now exceeds 7,300 votes.