Lehman Claims Victory at End of Long Night.
Sen. John Lehman and his supporters stayed at the Racine Labor Center until 1 a.m. awaiting results of the historic recall election for the 21st Senate District. Patch was there as the tallies came in.
**Updated 12:55 am
John Lehman declared victory at 12:53 am, dedicating the victory to all the hard work and hours of service from the volunteers who led the recall efforts in the 21st Senate District.
12:50 am: With all City of Racine locations reporting, Lehman retained his lead 31,410 to 31.092, according to numbers tallied by Patch using figures from the county and the City of Racine.
Lehman maintained a solid, almost two-to-one lead in the city, 17,373 to 8,620, but where Lehman lags is in the suburbs; Caledonia went for Wanggaard, and it appears that Mount Pleasant will as well. Sturtevant voters also sided with Wanggaard;
As of 12:50 am, only one location in Mount Pleasant hadn't reported. Village Hall, Concordia Lutheran, Fellowship Baptist Church, Assembly of God, Franksville Park, and Messiah Lutheran were all in and giving Wanggaard the nod, 4,446 to 3,908.
At around 12:30 Lehman announced that his people were only missing Mount Pleasant Village Hall, but Clerk/Treasurer Veronica Rudychev confirmed that Peace Lutheran (Wards 3,4,5,6,7) had still not returned ballot totals to her.
Earlier in the evening, former Sen. John Lehman addressed supporters at the Racine Labor Center, telling them there was no way for him to have predicted the road they would all travel together when the protests started in February 2011.
"We could not have pictured how the efforts you've put forth would have grown," he said. "I cannot thank you enough."
Lehman also thanked the families of volunteers for taking up the slack so their loved ones could be dedicated to the recall.
With the TV cameras pointed at him, Lehman urged the broadcast media to turn their lenses at the people.
"They are the story of this campaign, not me," he said. "They understand the need for shared sacrifice to pull the state together, how much sacrifice is needed for the common good."
As the city results come in, the margin is narrowing in this race, which is expected to be close.
Unofficial results from Racine County put state Sen. Van Wanggaard in the lead over Lehman. With Raymond, Yorkville, Elmwood Park, Sturtevant, Rochester, Union Grove and Wind Point totals complete, Wanggaard stands at 11,301 to Lehman's 7,033.
Rep. Cory Mason (D-Racine) said without anything official and so many precincts outstanding from Caledonia, Mount Pleasant and the City of Racine, it's too early to get excited about anything.
"I think we still have a good chance," he said. "Wanggaard is underperforming compared to Walker and that's a good sign."
Original Story: Former senator John Lehman and supporters will be at the Racine Labor Center tonight, waiting to see if he can regain his seat following the recall election.
Lehman is challenging Sen. Van Wanggaard, who took the seat from Lehman in November 2010. When enough signatures were turned in to force a recall of Wanggaard, Lehman declared candidacy for his old seat.
Also on the ballot today were recall elections for Gov. Scott Walker, Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch and three other state senators. Polls are open until 8 p.m.