Republican supermajority real possibility for Wisconsin ahead of Midterms

NOW: Republican supermajority real possibility for Wisconsin ahead of Midterms

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WISCONSIN (CBS 58) -- We're just six weeks away from midterms that political experts say could change the political landscape of the state of Wisconsin forever.

If Wisconsin Republicans can edge out enough seats in state Senate and Assembly races for two thirds majority in both the State Assembly and Senate come November, they'll have a veto-proof supermajority.

UW-Milwaukee political science professor Emeritus Mordecai Lee says to explain why supermajorities are a big deal, you have to go back to high school civics.

"When you have a situation of let's say a governor of one party, and a state legislature the other, there could be a situation where a governor is constantly vetoing whatever the legislature is sending to him or her," said Lee.

He says Governor Tony Evers has been taking advantage of that over the past few years, but this midterm could change things.

"If the legislature, that party in the legislature, has a supermajority, they can override the vetoes," said Lee explaining what it would take for things to change.

In the state assembly, Republicans are six seats away from a supermajority of 66.

In the state senate, with 21 Republicans and 12 Democrats right now, Republicans are one seat away from a 22-seat super majority.

"That means that the governor becomes irrelevant," said Lee.

Lee says most Democrats won't want that, and Republicans probably will.

He said when it comes to the 30,000 potential swing voters who helped elect Tony Evers over Scott Walker in 2018, it could be a more pertinent question.

"I think for the people in Wisconsin who sometimes vote democratic and sometimes vote republican, this is something to keep in mind. Do I want the legislature of one party to have a supermajority and to be able to pass anything, even if the governor vetoes it," said Lee.

Lee says now it's up to how voters vote in new districts drawn by Republicans that Democrats have tried to challenge in the past.

"The question is they draw the line so well, that they're going to be a supermajority? And that's something for the citizens to think through," said Lee.

The Wisconsin legislature hasn't overridden a veto since the 1985 session.

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