The Capitol protests are now officially responsible for launching at least one political career.
Fitchburg resident Jenni Dye, 30, whose prolific tweeting from the massive Capitol protests last winter netted her thousands of followers, is running for Dane County Board. (Mahlon Mitchell, the president of the Professional Fire Fighters of Wisconsin who became a celebrity during the Capitol protests, is flirting with a run for governor but hasn't committed.)
Dye, an attorney, made so many fans with her tweets that some grateful followers banded together to purchase her an iPad.
"The more I tweeted, the more people asked questions and wanted to know what was happening," she says. "So many people wanted to be there and couldn't that I became their way to get information from the ground."
Dye says she started thinking about running for office during this time.
"I actually remember standing in the Rotunda and thinking maybe this wasn't enough."
Dye says she was touched by seeing the "very real impact" of Walker's policies on people she cared about.
Dye is challenging incumbent Jack Martz, who has been in office since 2002. She intends to concentrate on issues of economic justice, community building and sustainable development. Dye predicts that her social media experience will serve her well as a politician.
"When I started [tweeting] in February I made a commitment that I would respond to anybody who made a comment. Having that dialogue and really trying to engage rather than be a one-way source of information is exactly what candidates and elected officials should be doing."