Tag Archives: Wisconsin

Walker attack spreads to public education

POSTED BY ORHAN

On Sunday Wisconsin Gov. “Chainsaw” Scott Walker signed into law a state budget cutting $800 million from public education, while insisting state school districts will be better off after the cuts. Milwaukee public schools will be the hardest hit, with 988 full-time layoffs coming this week.

In an interview Monday Walker said, “The tools we gave them allow them to more than offset, and in some cases, actually net more revenue than they would have otherwise with the state budget. Now, those are changes you may agree or disagree with how we got there, but in the end, they’re going to fare better.”

The budget expands the state’s “school choice” voucher program, providing more public funds for private schools, and permitting Milwaukee parents to send their children to any private school in the state.

Lobbying group The American Federation for Monetizing Children, which pumped resources into the legislative effort, praised the expansion, as well as the “Once In, Always In” provision that will ensure, according to economist John Lott, that “once a student gets a voucher, that student will always be able to keep it, regardless of their family’s future income. In previous years, a student who received a voucher could lose eligibility for the program because his or her parents happened to increase their income in a given year.”

The idea of students being so harshly penalized for a simple reversal of their parents’ fortunes must have been more than the legislators could bear to contemplate.  And no doubt school district workers are bursting with gratitude for the “tools” Walker gave them.

Wisconsin to defund Planned Parenthood

POSTED BY ORHAN

According to the NY Daily News, Wisconsin is set to become the fourth state to defund Planned Parenthood, joining Indiana, Kansas and North Carolina.

Gov. Scott Walker is expected to sign off on a budget that will eliminate federal and state funding to nine of the state’s 25 Planned Parenthood centers by the end of the month.

The state’s new budget includes a $1 million cut to Planned Parenthood. All the Republicans and one independent voted in favor of the plan while all the Democrats opposed it.

Republican state Sen. Glenn Grothman argued that the new budget doesn’t cut enough funding from Planned Parenthood: “There’s a very ugly side to this organization, and I regret that they’re going to take such a tiny cut in this budget”.

The nine clinics that will be affected by the budget cuts provide low-cost health care to approximately 12,000 uninsured women.

Teri Huyck, president of Planned Parenthood Advocates of Wisconsin, said she is disappointed that political ideology will take precedence over health care.

“It is greatly disturbing to me that some politicians’ personal beliefs are trumping our shared responsibility to make sure women and men have access to preventive reproductive health care, which is not only essential for their own lives, but also a cost-saver for all Wisconsin taxpayers,” said Huyck.

Wisconsin update – Supreme Court overturns collective bargaining ruling

POSTED BY ORHAN

(updated below)

From the Wisconsin State Journal: Circuit Judge Maryann Sumi overstepped her authority when she voided Gov. Scott Walker’s measure limiting public sector collective bargaining, the state Supreme Court ruled today in a 4-3 decision.

The conservative majority said Sumi “usurped the legislative power which the Wisconsin constitution grants exclusively to the Legislature” by voiding the law. Sumi ruled the state’s open meetings law was violated when Republicans met and amended the bill in March, allowing the Republican-controlled Senate to bypass a Democratic boycott.

Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson dissented, writing that the authors of the court’s order, along with concurring Justice David Prosser — lacked “a reasoned, transparent analysis” and incorporate “numerous errors of law and fact.”

“Only with a reasoned, accurate analysis can a court assure the litigants and the public that a decision is made on the basis of facts and law,” Abrahamson wrote, “free from a judge’s personal ideology and free from external pressure by the executive or legislative branches, by partisan political parties, by public opinion or by special interest groups.”

The State Department of Administration “is reviewing the Supreme Court’s order and will begin implementing (the law) when appropriate.”

Bottom line: Prosser voted exactly as expected, and if Kloppenburg had beaten him in the State Supreme Court race, the Republicans would be singing a different tune tonight.

UPDATE:

Also from the Wisconsin State Journal: One day after the state Supreme Court cleared the way for Gov. Scott Walker’s controversial bill limiting collective bargaining to become law, several labor organizations filed a federal lawsuit Wednesday in an effort to prevent some of its provisions from taking effect in federal court.

The lawsuit was brought by the Wisconsin Education Association Council, Wisconsin State Employees Union, Wisconsin Council of County and Municipal Employees, AFSCME District Council 48 representing Milwaukee County municipal employees, AFT-Wisconsin, SEIU Healthcare Wisconsin and the Wisconsin State AFL-CIO.

The groups are challenging the constitutionality of the bill they say would destroy collective bargaining rights for all but a select group of public sector workers deemed “public safety” employees, including certain firefighters and law enforcement officers.

Walker responded to the suit saying, “I think overwhelmingly the people of the state feel the legal action is done and it’s time to move forward.”

Recall signatures for another Wisconsin Republican submitted

POSTED BY ORHAN

Today Wisconsin activists submitted over 100% of the signatures needed to “recall” Republican state senator Luther Olsen from office.

Signatures are now submitted against 3 Republicans — with local volunteers working to recall at least 3 more, according to the Progressive Change Campaign Committee.

Blog Blue Cheddar writes, “About 24,000 signatures were filed today with Wisconsin’s Government Accountability Board by the “Committee to Recall Olsen”. The group needed to collect 14,733 signatures.”

Dem edges Republican in Wisconsin state Supreme Court race

POSTED BY ORHAN

WaPo’s Greg Sargent reports:

In the nationally-watched Wisconsin state Supreme Court race, liberal challenger JoAnne Kloppenburg has edged ahead of conservative sitting justice David Prosser by just over 200 votes.

We still don’t know who is going to win, and we may not know for some time to come. But even if Kloppenburg loses, labor strategists argue, this will have constituted a victory for unions and Dems — proof of Scott Walker’s continuing toxicity, and of the staying power of the grassroots energy he unleashed. They’re right.

Stay tuned.

UPDATE: Thursday Evening from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel website:

In a political bombshell, the clerk in a Republican stronghold released new vote totals adding a net total of 7,582 new votes in the tight state Supreme Court race to Justice David Prosser, swinging the race significantly in his favor.

Waukesha County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus said Thursday that she failed to save in her computer and consequently report 14,315 votes cast in the city of Brookfield, omitting them entirely in an unofficial tally released after Tuesday’s election. The new totals give 10,859 more votes to Prosser from Brookfield and 3,456 more to Kloppenburg, she said. Smaller discrepancies turned up in two other communities as well.

First Wisconsin recall against GOP to be filed today

POSTED BY ORHAN

From TalkingPointsMemo:

Wisconsin Democrats now say they have more than enough signatures to launch a recall of Republican state Sen. Dan Kapanke, in the battle over Gov. Scott Walker’s (R) new law curtailing public employee unions. They are filing the petitions today — less than halfway through the 60-day window for gathering the signatures.

The La Crosse Tribune reports:

Recall organizer Pat Scheller said volunteers have gathered more than the 15,588 signatures needed and that they plan to take them to Madison after a noon rally today at La Crosse City Hall.

It is expected to be the first completed of 19 active recall efforts registered between Feb. 24 and March 2 against 16 senators.

I’m wondering, are these REAL Americans?

Scriptor Obscura posted this over at The Conservative Lie. Warms my heart.