Wisconsin Republicans strip public worker union rights


UPDATED 7 a.m., 3/10/2011 [chronological order, oldest entries followed by more recent entries.]—Live streaming video from The Uptake at the Wisconsin State Capitol in Wisconsin, where the Republicans abandoned the budget bill (which requires a quorum, as an appropriation bill), and passed a bill that only strips collective bargaining rights from public worker unions. Protesters streamed into the Capitol despite police attempts to keep them out. Chants call for a general strike and recall. The lower house still has to pass the law before it can become law. People inside the Capitol are refusing police orders to leave.

on livestream.com.

What’s next? There are as many questions as possibilities:

1) General strike? There’s a call for a general strike, but no real reading of how much support there would be. If there were a general strike, some workers would be fired. Walker has already said he will fire workers if the Democratic senators do not return.

2) Will the Democratic senators return? If they do, then the Republicans can also pass the budget bill, which still includes provisions for no-bid sales of up to 37 heating and cooling plants owned by the state.

3) What will the courts say? Democrats may sue to overturn the sudden Senate action.

4) Recall-Democrats are already gathering signatures to recall some of the Senate Republicans. Under Wisconsin law, recall elections can only be held after the elected official has served for a full year, so they’ll have to wait until next year to try to recall Governor Walker.

5) How long will protests continue? Protesters streamed to the Capitol as word of the vote spread, and quickly occupied it despite police efforts to keep the doors closed.

[Text from TC Daily Planet]



Wisconsin Representative Roys calls vote illegal

Representative Kelda Helen Roys says that the Senate bill stripping public employees of most collective bargaining right wasn’t even drafted when it was voted on. She tells The UpTake’s Sam Mayfield that the is GOP winning in WI by devious and illegal means. “We will hold them accountable.” says Roys and plans to fight the bill in the Assembly.

Robert Reich on Governor Walker’s Coup D’Etat

“Governor Scott Walker and his Wisconsin senate Republicans have laid bare the motives for their coup d’etat. By severing the financial part of the bill (which couldn’t be passed without absent Democrats) from the part eliminating the collective bargaining rights of public employees (which could be), and then doing the latter, Wisconsin Republicans have made it crystal clear that their goal has had nothing whatever to do with the state budget. It’s been to bust the unions. …”


Madison Firefighters Prez calls for general strike

Madison Firefighters union President Joe Conway says a general public strike would be an appropriate response to the Wisconsin Senate voting to strip public workers of their collective bargaining rights. The union members would need to approve it by Conway is advocating walking off the job.

Protests more aggressive than usual; police barriers broken down

[From the Badger Herald] “DOA spokesperson Tim Donovan said law enforcement officers attempted to prevent forced entry from happening but were unable to because of the large volume of people.”