At approximately 4pm yesterday, March 9th, notice was given of an impending “special committee” hearing, by Republican Senators in Madison, of a bill to separate state worker collective bargaining rights from budget issues. A budget issue needs a 2/3 quorum where non fiscal issues only require a majority in the Wisconsin senate. The 19 Republicans met at 6pm, and by 6.45 the vote had been taken, eighteen to one, to approve the ‘plan’.
I called Dennis, a Madison Pagan and state employee, and AFT union steward, for his thoughts.
What is your reaction to tonight’s Republican action eliminating collective bargaining for State workers?
” The Republicans admitted tonight that was their goal. They clothed real intent in their budget repair bill, but it is pretty obvious what they were after from the beginning. I can’t say I am surprised. I am surprised it took them this long to do something. They were using the budget bill to provide themselves with cover, but it was pretty transparent. ”