Tuesday, March 1, 2011

MADISON UPDATE - Judge Orders Access Open to Capital Building

Let them in!

Sort of; one wonders if this is what the judge had in mind, but this is so far from over, one cannot see the end from here.
Wisconsin judge orders Capitol open to public

Reuters – Protestors wait for the doors to open as they continue to occupy the state Capitol to protest against … .– 1 hr 16 mins ago

MADISON, Wisconsin (Reuters) – Wisconsin officials said Tuesday they would not ease entry restrictions at the Capitol Building in Madison after a judge ordered there be public access during business hours.

The Capitol building has been the focus of two weeks of protests by labor unions and their supporters opposed to Gov. Scott Walker's plan to curtail union power.

The state agency that operates the Capitol building said it was already in compliance with the judge's order.

Dane County Circuit Court Judge Daniel Moeser ordered state officials on Tuesday to open access. Moeser's order was granted without a hearing and specified it would stand until the trial court is able to schedule a hearing on the matter.

A hearing on the restraining order sought by the Wisconsin State Employees Union is scheduled for Tuesday afternoon.

Access to the building was tightened earlier this week and remained restricted at midday on Tuesday with law enforcement officers escorting people to hearing rooms and to other offices.

Representative Peter Barca, the minority leader of Democrats in the Wisconsin Assembly, said authorities needed to open access to the building in an "orderly process."

"I do think they need to do this immediately," Barca said.

Joe Thoennes, 25, who has camped in the capitol building for 10 consecutive nights, said access still appeared restricted on Tuesday morning after the order was issued and he planned to stay put in the rotunda.

"I've been wanting to get out so I can have a shower," Thoennes said. "But I'm not planning on going anywhere for now."

(Reporting by David Bailey and Stefanie Carano in Madison and James Kelleher in Chicago; Editing by Greg McCune)
And Throw Walker and his buddies OUT!
Meanwhile, confirming that Walker is an epic fail for his Koch Brothers puppet masters and likely to be setting a pattern across the nation where other governors are trying to emulate his union-busting:

Wisconsin voters express buyer’s remorse over Gov. Scott Walker
By Rachel Rose Hartman

Two months into his first term, a new poll shows Wisconsin voters are unhappy with GOP Gov. Scott Walker--and would send him packing if they were given a do-over of the 2010 election that sent him to the statehouse in Madison.

Amid the firestorm Walker touched off in going after the state's public-sector unions, voters indicated to Public Policy Polling (PDF) that Walker would lose a rematch with his Democratic opponent, Milwaukee mayor Tom Barrett, if the election were held today. Fifty-two percent of respondents said that today they would vote for Barrett and 45 percent said they would vote for Walker. Walker's job approval/disapproval was also 46 to 52 percent in the poll. PPP is considered to be a Democratic-allied firm

Those numbers are a complete reversal of November's election. Back then, Walker received 52 percent and Barrett received 46 percent of the vote.

The Wisconsin state capitol has been in disarray since Walker proposed ending collective bargaining for most state workers. Walker's bill has sparked enormous protests and prompted 14 Democratic state senators to flee the capitol to avoid advancing the measure in the state legislature.

Walker proposed ending collective bargaining as one way to help balance the state's budget and repair a $3.6 billion budget deficit. The governor and his allies argue that Walker is simply fulfilling his campaign promise to repair the state's fiscal situation.

Walker says he's actually working to preserve jobs for state workers. By ending collective bargaining and forcing state workers to contribute 5.8 percent of their salaries toward pensions and doubling their health insurance contribution, his administration would save 1,500 jobs between now and July, Walker says.

But critics say Walker's simply embarked on a union-busting power grab. President Obama earlier this month said Walker's proposal "seems like more of an assault on unions."

Regardless of how his program is playing in the court of public opinion, Walker has shown no signs of backing down. He issued a threat to Senate Democrats yesterday, saying that if the 14 state Senators do not return to the capitol Tuesday to vote on the bill, the state will lose out on $165 million in bond refinancing. Walker is scheduled to make a public address upon the 5 p.m. EST deadline for the lawmakers' return.
The appropriate word to describe Governor Scott Walker and his Republican / Tea Party stooges in the Wisconsin legislature would appear to be OVERREACH.  Say it with me, Ohhhhh vur REEEEECH.

Specifically as in dictionary.com's definitions:

  4. to defeat (oneself) by overdoing matters, often by excessive eagerness or cunning: In trying to promote disunity he had overreached himself.
  5. to strain or exert (oneself or itself) to the point of exceeding the purpose.
10. to reach too far: In grabbing for the rope he overreached and fell.
11. to cheat others.
Walker has been nothing if not excessively eager, cunning, and intending to cheat others.

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