The mistake I made early on is, I looked at it almost like the head of a small business: identify a problem, identify a solution and go out and do it. I don’t think we built enough of a political case, so we let … the national organizations come in and define the debate while we were busy just getting the job done.Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker • Discussing, during the National Governor’s Association meeting in Salt Lake City, the whole anti-union saga that has engulfed his state for a good four or five months now. Walker has faced tons of criticism from the left over the law, which passed in a sneaky behind-the-back way at the end of a lengthy holdout by numerous Democrats in the state senate — and was later upheld in court after a proxy battle over a judge’s election favored Walker’s law. Many Republicans who voted for the measure face a recall vote in August, and Walker could face one of his own in 2012. source (via • follow)
» GOP pushback comes up a hair short: Following challenges by the Democratic Party in Wisconsin, the state’s Government Accountability Board has ruled that 26 of the Nygren campaign’s recall petition signatures are invalid, and as that left Nygren with just 398 signatures, they kicked him out of the race. Nygren is pursuing legal options, and frankly we don’t expect this to be over — two signatures is such a slim margin, it seems obvious that every last signature is again going to get combed over. The GOP still has a candidate, an activist named David VanderLeest, but given his comparatively lackluster background, we imagine they’re pushing to get Nygren back.
I think it was something that we just believed that the legislature has always had the ability to do no matter if it was Democrats or Republicans in charge.Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker • Reacting to the Wisconsin Supreme Court’s decision (read it here) allowing Walker’s collective bargaining bill to go through because the state’s opening meetings law doesn’t apply to legislators. What did they have the ability to do, Scott, ignore the spirit of the law by holding a vote with two hours notice, because they felt it didn’t cover them, and wait for the state Supreme Court to prove them right? As you might guess, Democrats aren’t exactly thrilled by this decision. Not only the decision itself, but the fact that a law designed to prevent things like this essentially doesn’t apply to legislators, and now the Democrats will have to rewrite the state constitution to put that protection back in. Republicans on the other hand, are thrilled. This situation is a total mess, no matter what way you look at it. source (via • follow)
» Big money for big trickery: As you may have heard, the Republican Party in Wisconsin is facing a grim reality — recall elections are looming, and there’s a pretty decent chance the outcomes will tilt legislative power towards the Democrats. The reason, broadly speaking, is the passion and anger towards the state GOP’s efforts to strip public union rights. As such, they’re is aiming to delay the elections to hope things have time to cool off. Their plan is unorthodox: running Republicans, as Democrats, against the Democratic opposition at the primary stage, thus forcing an extra election. Extra elections come with a cost to the state, though, and this is no different. Sort of hurts the whole cash-strapped, “gotta cut back, gotta strip these union rights” narrative, huh?
We’ve got tons of government workers in my district — tons. From La Crosse to Prairie du Chien and to Viroqua and to Ontario and to Hillsboro, you can go on and on and on. We have to overcome that. We gotta hope that they, kind of, are sleeping on July 12th — or whenever the (election) date is.Wisconsin State Sen. Dan Kapanke • Expressing fear that he might get recalled due to the fact that his district has a lot of public-sector union workers in it. A secret recording caught Kapanke saying this along with a few other things. He noted in the clip, taped last week at the Cedar Creek Golf Club in Onalaska, Wisc., that two other state senators were in serious danger of losing their seats, too, and offered up this harbinger: “If they gain control of the Senate, it might be over for us. Because redistricting will play a role, as you know, and we lose that power.” Well, that doesn’t sound optimistic, does it? (h/t ThinkProgress) source (via • follow)
Reader abandonedsandals sends along this note:
“Wisconsin board approves recalls against GOP, but not Dems” — I work part-time for one of the towns in SE Wisconsin, so I’ve been keeping an eye on this. I can tell you that there’s been efforts by those of us against Walker to screw up the petitions to recall the Democrats. Nothing formally organized, but we figure the more invalid signatures, the better it is for us. So for example, I actually live in Illinois, and the Kenosha area gets a lot of Illinois visitors (people who work up here like me, belong to organizations, and there are a lot of family members spread over the two states. You just get an Illinois resident to sign the petition — using their IL street address and a Wisconsin city & state. I’ve also heard at least one rumor of getting convicts to sign!
Like I mentioned, I never saw any organized effort to screw up the petitions, just a lot of very angry Anti-Walker people talking about good ways to do it. So I suspect there will be a lot of those names being thrown out.
(I’m old enough to remember Dick Tuck — so I love this.)
A fascinating footnote to our piece from earlier.
One of the perks of being an early employee...
Over the last 90 days, the Digg...
Thanks. I guess my thoughts are as follows:
1. I think...
idroolinmysleep asks: Kathy Hochul's election reminds me...any prognostication on Wisconsin? Last I heard JoAnne Kloppenburg lost the recount but has a week to challenge it (http://www.superiortelegram.com/event/article/id/54128/). Will the Republicans go ahead and rule as if they have a mandate, or will they take the opposition's strength into consideration?
» SFB says: I think there’s a perfectly good reason to think that Wisconsin leaders will lead as if they have a mandate … and push it too far. Let me let you in on a little secret here … when any party in any venue thinks they have a “mandate,” especially on the national level, they screw it up and give the other party an in. Which makes me think Scott Walker will blow it this time, too. — Ernie @ SFB