Posts tagged Wisconsin
For those keeping track at home, the score so far, in the six fake Wisconsin primaries (in which Republicans ran faux Democrats) and the one actual recall election: Democrats 7, Republicans 0. All seven of those Democratic wins were blowouts.
I’d think any sane analyst would have expected them to be blowouts. But it would have been a bad sign for the Democrats’ chances in 2012 if they had not been.
These recall elections are a test vote on how Republicans are doing since taking over the House of Representatives, several state legislatures, and a number of Governorships in 2010. The policies of Republicans, both in the States and nationally, have been extremely conservative, and have been closely coördinated at both the federal and local levels. The politics of this year and next are turning into a referendum on how well Republicans are doing.
This reveals a failure of messaging on the part of Republicans, who wanted the 2012 elections to be a referendum on President Obama, and who were certain they could spin the President’s record as something distasteful to the voting public. The combination of extremist policies on the part of Republicans, and the even-handed calm response of the President, seems, however, to be defeating this strategy. (more…)
One of the most amazing political sagas in recent memory is playing out in Wisconsin. Here are a few of the highlights — the full story would fill a novel. And a great novel it would be. Now, I’m a science fiction and fantasy writer, but I wouldn’t touch something like this. It’s too unbelievable for the my own preferred genres.
Newly-elected Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker pushed a serious union-busting measure through the state legislature earlier this year, resulting in massive protests at the state capital, protests which were echoed in other places around the country.
Governor Walker used a projected deficit in the state budget as an excuse for these measures. We know the state budget was really just an excuse, and the real goal was to bust the unions, because the unions agreed to the cost saving measures. Walker still insisted on the measures that would nearly dismantle the unions, and remove nearly all collective bargaining rights for most state workers. (more…)
Wisconsin’s State Senate currently has 19 Republicans and 14 Democrats. Democratic activists are therefore concentrated on recalling three Republican senators and replacing them with Democrats, which would shift the balance to 16 R/17 D.
Wisconsin law demands that an elected official serve one year in office before s/he is subject to recall.
Six Republican state senators who are being recalled meet that standard, and have been targeted with successful recall petitions. Democrats are angry over a provision first advanced by Republican Gov. Scott Walker and approved by both houses of the state legislature which would take away collective bargaining rights for almost all public employees. The State Supreme Court has cleared the law and it will now go into effect.
Edit: Reader rgbact has correctly pointed out that the bill restricts collective bargaining rights only on benefits, leaving collective bargaining for wages in place. I regret the error.
A complex political dance is taking place in the state of Wisconsin, involving all three branches of the state government, with active participation from the people of the state. The dance has important implications for the nation, dealing as it does with the kind of people we are, with the nature of collective bargaining, with the ways the people interact with each other and with the institutions of government.
On May 26, Dane County Circuit Judge Maryann Sumi struck down Wisconsin’s union-busting bill that had been pushed by Republicans through the state legislature, and signed into law by first-term Governor Scott Walker. (more…)
An interesting week, indeed. Another Republican House seat flips blue. The President pushes for Israel to return to 1968 borders. The deadliest tornado in the United States since 1947 hit Joplin, Missouri. And Wisconsin gears up for next week’s recall elections.
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As if Wisconsin were not already the focus of all eyes politically because of its recent high-profile labor battles and lawmaker-recall initiatives…now it will have an exciting Senate race in 2012 as well. Senator Herb Kohl (D-WI) who has served his state with steady, low-key competence for almost a quarter of a century and still enjoys favorable approval ratings, unexpectedly announced his retirementlast week:
I’ve always believed that it’s better to leave a job a little too early than a little too late. And that’s how I feel today. The interest and energy I have for this job will find a new home at the conclusion of this term.