Monday, September 26th, 2016

Report from the Waukesha County Courthouse

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Election night went rather smooth for Waukesha County. The election results were sent by the municipalities to the Government Accountability Board and the back to the Waukesha County Clerk’s office.

At first the night seemed like a typical Waukesha County election night. The door to the clerk’s office was closed. The television stations were calling the clerk’s office from outside the door and getting voice mail. Eventually we were all let in for the first results and to take pictures.

Waukesha County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus on election night

Once the clerk’s office decided to start communicating with those of us on hand to watch for any disasters, the election results came to us on a timely basis. By 10:30 PM, Waukesha reported 100% of the results.

The only real controversy of the night was why was County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus there. After all, she was supposed to step aside and let the deputy clerk Kelly Yaeger handle the election. When Nickolaus was asked about it early in the evening, she said she was just worried about getting through last night.

Nickolaus made occasional “fly by” visits (as Democratic Fifth Congressional District Chairman Jeff Christensen described it) to drop off results to those of us in the holding room outside the clerk’s office.

Later, Waukesha County Executive Dan Vrakas’ chief of staff Shawn Lundie explained Nickolaus’ presence by saying it was up to Yaeger on how Nickolaus would assist on election night. However, we also heard later that WTMJ reported Nickolaus was back in charge of the election night operations at Waukesha County. I’m not sure why there is a discrepancy in the two accounts. Perhaps more will become clear on Wednesday.

Nickolaus presence prompted the funniest tweet of the night from WTMJ-AM’s Charlie Sykes who responded to one of my tweets, “WTF? Change locks on the freakin doors!

This was followed by, “@jwigderson please explain to Me why Kathy Nickolaus is there and not in Witness Protection?”

By the way, Walker’s vote total in the 2010 Republican primary against Mark Neumann in Waukesha County was 68,385. Tuesday night Walker got 79,049 votes despite having no real opposition.

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