A second judge has castigated Wisconsin Republicans for excluding the public from the legislative process. Dane County Judge Maryann Sumi has issued a temporary restraining order blocking implementation of Governor Walker's union-busting bill on grounds that the conference committee's rushed passage of the bill on March 9 likely violated state Open Meeting laws.
Protesters flooded The Homer Building in Washington, D.C., where BGR Group, an enormous and infamously right-wing lobbyist group has its offices.
Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald has backed off a March 14 announcement that he would effectively eliminate Senate Democrats' right to vote during committee hearings and sessions. At first glance, it may appear that Fitzgerald and company are retreating from weeks of out-of-control decision-making, but the more likely explanation is that blocking votes may be unconstitutional and illegal. Plus, the move was completely contrary to Fitzgerald's prior claims that he was only trying to force the fourteen back into Wisconsin and "back to work." In a temporary win for legislative sanity, Fitzgerald seems to have backed down for now.
"Where did our money go? Down the Walker rat hole!"
Such was the popular chant Tuesday evening outside the downtown Madison Marshall and Ilsley Bank branch. Protesters rallied outside the small bank front on the Capitol Square.
M&I Bank, founded and based in Milwaukee, and its executives were top contributors to Governor Scott Walker's campaign fund in 2010. After Walker passed the controversial "budget repair" bill, eliminating collective bargaining rights for many Wisconsin public workers, M&I Bank found itself smack-dab at the top of two boycott lists.
"Who funds Walker? M&I Bank!"
The crowd of about 100 people gained steam as the protesting continued. At one point, a burly bald man with "M&I Security" emblazoned on his suit came out and told protester Miles Kristan he could not sit against the door of the bank because "it is private property."
Republican state Senator Randy Hopper now knows exactly what it feels like to have his dirty laundry aired for the world to see. It's not pretty.
The two-year senator from Fond du Lac, Wisconsin is in the midst of efforts to recall him from office for his actions against worker rights and fair procedures, and the Milwaukee-based WTMJ-TV has received a letter from his estranged wife accusing him of having an affair with a young woman he supervised. In the Wisconsin Senate, Hopper serves on the "Children and Families and Workforce Development Committee."
In 2010, the U.S. Census Bureau delivered the troubling but hardly shocking news that almost 51 million Americans -- nearly one out of every six of us -- had fallen into the ranks of the uninsured.
The MacIver Institute, also known as the John K. MacIver Institute for Public Policy, is a Wisconsin-based, free-market think tank formed in 2009 which also acts as a "news service," supplying videos and reports to media outlets, like newspapers and television broadcasters. But just who is the MacIver Institute?
SUNDAY, MARCH 20, 2011, NEWS ROUNDUP
Wisconsin State Journal: STUDY: BUDGET COULD HURT STATE'S ECONOMY
Gov. Scott Walker's plans to balance the state budget by cutting spending and public workers' take-home pay will slow the state's economic recovery, according to projections by a UW-Madison economist. An estimated 21,843 jobs will be lost over the next year or two as public agencies and workers are able to spend less in their communities, said Steven Deller, a professor of applied economics who studied the ripple effects of Walker's budget-repair bill and two-year budget proposal. "That's not just a bump in the road," Deller said. "That's a speed bump."
The divide-and-conquer attack on working people by Wisconsin Republicans continues. After pitting private sector workers versus public employees, Walker and the GOP are now targeting Wisconsin's quickly-growing Latino and immigrant communities.
The latest census numbers show that Wisconsin's Latino community has grown by 74 percent in recent years, and GOP lawmakers have responded aggressively to this shift in Wisconsin's ethnic composition. Walker's budget eliminates laws that had treated immigrants humanely, and a GOP bill circulating through the legislature seeks to impose a draconian racial profiling bill modeled after Arizona's SB1070. What's more, the anti-immigrant sentiment may be fueling the out-of-state effort to recall Wisconsin's Democratic Senators.
In what many called possibly the largest labor demonstration in U.S. history, Wisconsin state legislators rallied a crowd Saturday afternoon that rivaled previous weekends' protests of Gov. Scott Walkers radical budget repair bill.
"Our fight to protect union rights has become a fight to protect all our rights -- a fight to protect democracy," said Minority Leader Sen. Mark Miller, D-Monona. "You have inspired the nation with your passionate and peaceful protests."