The real struggle in Wisconsin has just begun...
by btchakir, Thu Mar 10, 2011 at 03:19:02 PM EST
Today people are returning to the Wisconsin capitol building to protest the act of the Republican Senators and the approval they have received by Scott Walker. The organization of trade unions is becoming intense and recalls of some legislators and a build up to recalling Walker (which cannot happen until next January by Wisconsin law) are in process.
Frank Emspak of the Workers Independent News in Madison stated:
“We’ve had democracy by deception here. You’re talking about disenfranchising millions of people, not only in Wisconsin, but also throughout the Midwest, and basically saying that working people, in an organized fashion, have no right to participate in the electoral process. That is what the Republicans are doing.”
And there was this statement by Gerald McEntee, president of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME):
At a time when we should be pulling together to create jobs, Governor Walker and the legislators who back him are more interested in stripping nurses, teachers, correction officers, bus drivers and EMTs of their rights. This is a question of right and wrong. The governor is tearing Wisconsin apart when voters want real solutions to the problems they face.
This is about more than Scott Walker's arrogance. He is tossing aside basic American values. Public workers fought long and hard for the right to collective bargaining. Martin Luther King, Jr. died defending that right for AFSCME sanitation workers in Memphis. We are not going to allow a small group of radical politicians in Wisconsin destroy what Americans have fought generations to win.
Only one Republican, Dale Schultz, voted against the bill last night. Schultz is a moderate Republican who previously proposed a compromise. His vote is likely to protect him from a recall effort by unions and Democrats.
As someone who as spent the better part of the last four weeks working toward and hoping for a compromise, this is a difficult night.
I’ve had the honor and privilege of representing folks in Southwest and South Central Wisconsin for 28 years, and where I come from ‘compromise’ isn’t a dirty word.
I’ve received tens of thousands of emails, thousands of phone calls and letters, and spent hours meeting with thousands of citizens in my district. I’ve heard personal and heartfelt stories of friends and neighbors, and they ask for just two things.
First, be inclusive by listening and working with your colleagues on both sides of the aisle to reach a compromise which addresses our fiscal crisis. Second, public employees are willing to make sacrifices on things like wages and benefits, but we need to preserve collective bargaining as a tool which has helped keep labor peace in this state for decades.
Ultimately, I voted my conscience which I feel reflects the core beliefs of the majority of voters who sent me here to represent them.
Because of the Wisconsin law that prohibits a recall until an elected official has served one year in office, only eight of the Republican Senators, who violated the open meeting rule and the 24 hour public announcement policy by eliminating collective bargaining last night, may currently be recalled. These are:
The protestors will have until January of next year to get the 500,000 signatures needed to recall Scott Walker. Meanwhile, Walker has been a Uniter, not a Divider: he has united the Unions, the Democrats, the people of Wisconsin and voters all across the unites States. Perhaps we could get the Republicans to run him for President.
Tags: (all tags)