Wisconsin senate Democrats getting homesick, Republican says
As long as 14 Wisconsin Senate Democrats stay on the lam, GOP Gov. Scott Walker can't push his controversial union busting bill through the Legislature.
So he threatened again today to start laying off 1,500 public sector workers in retaliation, and a Republican state senator reportedly met with some of the Democrats on the Illinois border to see if he could get them to come home.
Sen. Scott Fitzgerald told Channel 3000 that the meeting took place in Kenosha, spinning it to say "it was clear many senators are trying to get back," and the Democrats were breaking ranks.
Fitzgerald wouldn't say who or how many Democrats he met with for about two hours, but said Democratic Minority Leader Mark Miller was not present. He doubted the senators would be back in Madison today -- if in fact they plan to return at all.
Walker won't back off his assertion that the layoffs, along with stripping most public employees of their right to bargain collectively, are necessary to balance the state's budget. He's due to speak this afternoon in Madison about the union dispute and the rest of his budget, which promises heavy cuts to public education and local community aid as well.
State Sen. Jon Erpenbach told the Public News Service from his Chicago hideout that Walker is lying.
"Governor Walker is not being honest with the taxpayers," Erpenbach said. "He does not have to lay people off today and he knows that."
A poll out today suggests that Walker is falling out of favor with the folks who elected him.
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- Mark Dayton, eyeing Wisconsin, promises no union-busting laws
- Bachmann wants Obama to be more like Wisconsin governor, but Americans don't
- Wisconsin 14 won't get paychecks until they come home
- Wisconsin police hunt down Democratic senators over union-busting bill
- Bachmann vs. Obama on Wisconsin unions
- Jon Stewart pillories GOP "ritual sacrifice" of Wisconsin unions
- Wisconsin will call out National Guard against striking state workers
Have you seen these senators?
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