When a presidential campaign leaves a state, political activists and the local reporters who cover the candidates often take a vacation. Not so in Wisconsin this year, where Mitt Romney won the GOP primary this past Tuesday. As Chuck Quirmbach of Wisconsin Public Radio reports, recall elections scheduled during the next two months mean there is no spring break in Badger State politics.
Recordings of the conversations that an 80-year-old Wisconsin woman had with a controller and another pilot after her husband collapsed at the controls of their small plane on Monday show she had a "take-charge attitude in a total emergency," NPR's Paul Brown said earlier this morning on our Newscast.
Indeed, Helen Collins sounds remarkably calm. Her 81-year-old husband John had suffered a heart attack when they were about 10 minutes away from landing at Cherryland Airport in Sturgeon Bay, 150 miles north of Milwaukee. He was later pronounced dead.
His wins Tuesday in Washington, D.C., Maryland and — most importantly — in Wisconsin has produced a subtle shift in the way Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney is being referred to by the news media.
Rick Santorum came surprisingly close to an upset in Wisconsin this week, losing to Mitt Romney by less than 5 percentage points. It was not as heartbreakingly close as his previous losses in Michigan and Ohio, but it was one more reminder of what might have been.
With a win in Wisconsin, Santorum would have confounded the ruling media narrative of the moment, which wants to turn from the primary season of spring to the autumnal matchup of Romney and President Obama.