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Priebus: A Gov. Walker win means trouble for President Obama

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Reince Priebus

(CNN) — Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus framed Tuesday’s recall election (June 5th) in Wisconsin as a referendum on the Democratic Party that he said will face further obstacles in the presidential election if incumbent Republican Gov. Scott Walker is victorious.

“If Walker wins next Tuesday, which we are very confident he will, Obama’s going to have a much tougher road ahead in Wisconsin this fall,” Priebus said Wednesday, May 30th on a conference call with reporters of the state Obama won by almost 15% in 2008. “Certainly if Wisconsin goes red I think it’s lights out for Barack Obama.”

Priebus, the former Wisconsin GOP chairman, touted his party’s ground efforts in the state including field offices, the identification of over two million voters and new technology that he said is engaging Republicans across the country in their Badger State efforts.

He also, somewhat mockingly, said he is “looking forward” to seeing the results of the Democratic ground game.

“We’re looking forward to see what their top notch ground game will accomplish on Tuesday and what that will mean in November,” Priebus said, now that they are “all in” in the state.

His comments come on the same day Democratic National Committee Chair Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz is expected to visit the state on behalf of Democratic challenger and Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett.

Wasserman Schultz recently characterized the election as a “test run” for the Democratic ground game ahead of the general election.

“It’s given the Obama for America operation an opportunity to do the dry run we need of our massive, significant dynamic grassroots presidential campaign,” the Florida representative said Sunday, May 27th on CNN’s “State of the Union.”

However, Priebus said the president is “more concerned with weighing the political implication of the Wisconsin recall,” while Republicans have “made a clear choice to provide the resources and support to Gov. Walker.”

Walker and Barrett will face-off in a June 5 election, the culmination of a two year fight over collective bargaining rights for public employee unions. High profile politicians have visited the state recently, where millions have been spent on ads from local and national groups.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell and Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida traveled to the state in recent weeks to campaign for Walker, while Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, who chairs the Democratic Governors Association, is scheduled to visit the state on Barrett’s behalf Thursday, May 31st.

Recent polling shows Walker up by single digits in the race classified as a toss-up by non-partisan political handicappers Stuart Rothenberg and Charlie Cook.