Governor Walker started the whole Wisconsin union busting spectacle by saying that he’s ready to call out the National Guard, and his call with “David Koch” indicated that he’d considered planting agitators in the crowd, and that he has a baseball bat at the ready in his office.
This morning, his Republican colleagues in the State Assembly passed his bill in a 1 AM vote that was so short that 28 members present weren’t even able to register their vote.
That last action is consistent with the mentality Walker has demonstrated since the start of this showdown. I’m sure there are plenty of Republicans in the Assembly and Senate who are getting somewhat uncomfortable with his bully boy showboating antics, and who can imagine what it would be like to be in the minority with the tables turned. I wonder when they’ll fold.
When you say “when they will fold” I assume you mean the Dems. The wingnuts never fold, they double down.
The national press isn’t interested in the baseball bat threats apparently. Nobody is talking about it.
I don’t get it. Swap out Walker with Obama and the prankster with Trumka and have those to joking on the phone and Obama talking about using his baseball bat in the Oval Office, with his name on it, on the Tea Party protesters.
I wonder if the press would be silent. Sorry but Dem messaging is a failure. If they don’t push this crap the press will ignore it.
Where is Schumer the messaging guy? Where are the rest of the Dems on WI?
So they pass a bad law, add it up & keep protesting/disrupting/agitaing!
The world is watching WI, amongst all the other crap going on too.
So when can we expect the opinion column in the Washington Post where the columnist wags his finger at the Wisconsin assembly for how this bill was handled procedurally?
The Republicans have been paid by the Koch brothers to never fold.
. I’m sure there are plenty of Republicans in the Assembly and Senate who
are getting somewhat uncomfortable withadmire his bully boy showboating antics,
@Alwhite: Wingnuts eat the bully-boy shit up; that’s why they luvs them some Chris Christie. mistermix, to his credit, seems to think there’s something political that could embarrass these bozos. As far as I know, anything short of two wetsuits and a dildo they’re good with. Plus also too, I think we all know that it’s the Republican legislators who are the real victims here.
Recall the motherfucker, Wisconsin.
honestly, i’m not sure the GOP’s parliamentary stunts are any worse than the Dems’. the whole thing’s a clusterfuck.
Where does the GOP find these people?
The ‘paranoid style’ so prevalent in american society seems alive and well nowadays.
If the Dems ever did get the majority back, the Repubs would begin to whine and cry over the slightest perceived indignity, true or not, with no sense of shame or memory of the past. It’s what they do, they are collectively the first grade bully that ran off the playground crying when you make a move to give him that satisfying payback smack.
It’s all on the 19 Republican state senators to do the folding now. Not being on the ground in the state itself, I have no idea how feasible that is — how committed to party solidarity they are, and/or how much (and what kind of) pressure their constituents are giving them from their respective districts. If their constituents can put enough pressure on them to not support the bill, things could get very interesting indeed. Otherwise, I assume the WI state Repubs will resort to all kinds of political extortion to try to force the Dems to return. I can’t imagine that making them look good to anyone but the most rabid of right-wingers, though. Who knows? The entire legislative make-up might look significantly different come recall time, not just the governorship.
Mike Kay (Peacemaker)
and they campaigned against passing bill in the middle of the night.
they were against it, before they were for it.
Why isn’t there a push for the elected officials to give up some of their benefits and pensions?
ETA (because the FYWP edit function has taken a powder): I’d love to hear observations along these lines from the Cheeseheads in the crowd here. What are the senate Republicans hearing from their districts?
And outside the Assembly and Senate, Republicans and conservatives and freakjob media monsters will get somewhat uncomfortable that so few other governors are acting as tough as he is.
Oh, c’mon. Really? It might be pretty much the same when they’re in the minority. Except in that case the Republican Senate would probably just never show up in order to block any legislation. Or similar.
There have been commercials all over Wisconsin and e-mails from DGA, DCCC and DNC on the call. I’m not sure what else they can do to push it.
I’m sure if Obama uses the bully pulpit…
So the Assembly passed it, but it’s stuck in the State Senate. Still, I don’t think Walker’s backing down on this one, ever.
@stuckinred: OT..I called Broun’s office and told them that as a resident of GA, I was disappointed he didn’t have the courage to call out the protester.
@E.D. Kain: Walker won’t back down but a few Republican senators might.
Of course the senate will have to pass it as is, and 9 of those guys will face a potential recall.
My state assemblyman (Peter Barca) is one of those who was counted as not voting. Here’s a link to the roll call.
Tangentially related: I think K-Thug’s column this morning contains the first mainstream media mention of the sneaky no-bid power plant sales included in this bill. It would be nice if someone less, y’know, shrill would take notice, too.
I read somewheres that Walker has issued a rule closing the capitol on Saturday, in effect forcing all the protesters out. Not sure if this is true or not.
The National Guard played an important role in union busting a century ago. Why not get them started in it again?
Hm. I don’t think I’ve seen Republican pols display that kind of imagination in recent years.
In fact, they mainly work the refs. When Dems are in power its “all crying on the ground holding their ankle for a red card all the time”. Then when they get power they kick the opposition in the crotch repeatedly and then call them names when they try to get a red card.
It’s called hardball. Republicans know how to play it and conservatives have spent 40+ years buying off the refs to make it all work their way.
Walker’s a zealot who will never be budged from his position.
The State Senators subject to recall are the ones who need to be leaned on.
@mikefromArlington: When the other side owns the media channels, it’s awful difficult to be even decent at messaging. Just look at how hard it’s been to land a labor representative on one of the Sunday morning shows this week. That lack of access, rather than the messaging, is the fundamental problem.
After the vote –
@Ash Can: I think the big hurdle down the road is the state budget for next year, which as I understand it, can’t move without a quorum. It’s for that reason that I don’t see how the Democratic senators can hold out until Walker can be recalled.
I think it’s that issue that will make Walker and the legislative Repubs look increasingly unreasonable.
The Unions are willing to make concessions, the Dems are willing to negotiate, but Walker is willing to make everything come to a halt to get his pet Union-busting bill passed.
I’m sure some Republicans are uncomfortable with Walker’s tactics — but Walker didn’t pull the surprise vote last night; Assembly Republicans did. Walker was no doubt behind it, but Assembly Republicans did the deed.
The Republicans are trying to turn the tables and recall the 14 Democrats.
Shameful. Unlike all the late-night and weekend votes for Obamacare…
@me: It’ll be interesting to see how far these efforts actually get.
mistermix a.k.a. mastermix
@Jim Treacher: Ah, a Daily Caller writer trolling B-J. What’s the matter, not winning the morning?
To respond to your bullshit false equivalency, no, the Democrats didn’t hold a 30 second vote on HCR. Every Republican who wanted to vote against it got the opportunity to do so.
this is who they are. period. no shock about the GOP THUGS
@Cacti: Personally, I don’t think Walker is capable of being reasonable. It will come down to whether enough GOP senators think Walker has become so toxic to their own prospects that they are willing to break with him. If that doesn’t happen, then I’m not sure what the Democratic senators do. But, as I understand it, that point is still a couple of months out, and a lot can happen between now and then.
@me: It might be smart for the Dems and unions to start the process of recalling GOP senators as well.
@jwb: straightforward civil disobedience is called for. If assemblymen are not being allowed to vote, the whole business is a sham. Treat it like the coup d’etat that it is.
@Jim Treacher: The Senate would have been happy to schedule the health care votes at convenient times if the GOP had been willing to allow the votes to occur. Back under the bridge with you…
@jwb: Yes. Which effort is more successful will be a good measure of where public opinion is on this.
They won’t fold. The GOP is a political suicide cult. They’ll leave the building after the recalls are voted through.
And the smart ones know it.
@Shalimar: Also given what I know of Wisconsin politics, the GOP is somewhat over-represented at the moment, meaning that it should have more vulnerable members than do the Dems, who should be in “safer” districts. Hence, it should be somewhat easier for Dems to be successful in a recall effort. In any case, it would force the GOP to play defense.
@Punchy: I heard that, too. Guess it’s Walker’s house and not the People’s House now.
@Tyro: These are, after all, the same people who idolize ‘Sheriff Joe’ Arpaio in AZ who never met a civil right he couldn’t violate with impunity.
In 1987, Speaker of the House Jim Wright held open a budget vote for an additional ten minutes to get some vote changes. Republicans moaned that it was the worst abuse of power they’d ever seen and Dick Cheney, then the Representative from Wyoming, called Wright a “heavy-handed son of a bitch.” Presumably that is the same day that irony died, though it remains unconfirmed whether or not Dick Cheney got irony’s heart as an organ donor.
Fast forward 16 years, when in 2003 Tom DeLay held the vote open for an unprecedented three hours to threaten and/or bridbe wavering Republicans into passing Medicare Part-D, and you heard nary a peep from Republicans.
There are no more honorable Republicans. They died or were kicked out of office more than two decades ago. Those who remain have no discernible sense of shame.
A friend of mine, who’s a grad student, had a meeting yesterday with her adviser, whose political leanings she describes as moderate (he’s not conservative, she says, but he’s not on board with a lot of liberal ideas either). The adviser’s father-in-law is one of the Assembly Republicans, and apparently a lot of the Republicans in the legislature hate the bill, think it goes too far, want to change it, are hearing from constituents who hate it, etc., but they’re getting immense pressure from Walker and the leadership to stay on board, including threats of withholding funds or other support for them and their districts. My friend asked why, if they hate the bill and their constituents hate the bill, none of them will take a stand against it, and instead make this public show of going along with it. The adviser could only shrug.
These Republicans are people who could meet a couple, one with cancer and another in a paraplegic condition, who will likely lose their Medicaid funding under this legislation and will die because of that (see this article, toward the end, beginning with “As happened all morning”), give them an ovation, and then vote to kill them.
As for outreach, another grad student tells me that the teaching assistant union has plans to go out into Republican districts this weekend to go door to door, trying to persuade more people in those districts to tell their senators that they oppose the bill. They recognize that it’ll be hard for people like them, who represent much of what people outside Madison hate about Madison (liberal elitists!), but many of the students are native Wisconsinites from these districts, so they hope they can make a difference.
Paul in KY
@JPL: Way to go. Glad you called.
Paul in KY
@kideni: God bless them for trying.
@mistermix a.k.a. mastermix:
It hadn’t occurred to me, but I guess not! Don’t worry, you guys are doing fine.
Ah, I do so enjoy the New Civility…
Yeah, remember when they fled over state lines to avoid holding a vote?
“I wonder when they’ll fold?”
The time for that has passed. If they were going to fold, these politiciians wouldn’t have departed from the usual cautious do-nothingism characteristic of the species lately, and wouldn’t have let Walker even get started. They’ve certainly already had along the way since them much more than the usual amount of pushback it takes to get politicians back in line with cautious do-nothingism.
Best I can figure, it’s fear of getting primaried. They figure they’re dead meat anyway if they don’t start living up to the anti-union rhetoric that they’ve been spouting for decades, but never acted on before.
What I’m wondering right now, is when the Dems are going to take the obvious and necessary next step now that it’s obvious that the other side ins’t folding by itself. When do we start collecting the signatures to recall the 8 E senators who can be recalled? Only need 3 flips to take the Senate. Only way the Senate’s not voting for the union-busting plan. What’s the delay?
Sorry but Dem messaging is a failure.
I suspect the mainline Dems have finally realized that MSM is not their friend, and so there’s really no point.
Have they scheduled any union representives for Meet the Press or any of the other Sunday morning shows yet? as of yesterday, they had not.
I’ve decided to just assume the MSM is a ‘fifth column’ serving against the interests of the people, and to be surprised if/when I ever see evidence to the contrary.
Much better for my long-term health.
@Jim Treacher: I remember when House republicans walked out of the house in 2008 to avoid having a vote, but I guess that doesn’t count.
Yes, Trumka is going to be on MTP, with a buncha conservatives. All the other shows are all conservative, just like last week.
And that development strongly supports the notion that the Corporate Media has an agenda beyond making $$$. Normally they avoid delivering the truth to their viewers by having the drama of two sides conflicting, held to a false equivalency, with no factchecking.
Prediction: David Gregory will stomp on Trumka as hard as he can.
A “fifth column.” That’s exactly right.
@E.D. Kain: @E.D. Kain:
Walker seems to believe he was elected King, not Governor. Therein lies the problem.
What matters more is how the voters of Wisconsin react. The “independents” (aka the uninformed) evidently went heavily for Walker. If they buy into his blatantly dishonest argument that eliminating collective bargaining rights is about fiscal responsibility, rather than union busting, then this will be a big winner for Walker.
I wish I had more confidence in my fellow citizens…but I’ve got none at this point.
Time’s Person of the Year for 2011? The Republican Thug. (With Walker and Christie as poster boys.)
@priscianus jr: Hasn’t opened fire yet?