Politics Friday: What a week it’s been…
It’s been an interesting week and the next one promises more of the same if not more.
The Green Bay city council joined many other governmental subunits around the state by unanimously approving extending the city’s contracts with their unions. Meanwhile, the Marathon County Board has voted twice in the past eight days not to have any discussions with county unions. The vote was 22-10 on Thursday, March 17 and 24-10 opposing last Tuesday. Is it too much to ask that somebody public a roll call on this one or was this one of those “show of hands” deals? The City of Wausau passed a resolution opposing Walker’s bill, but apparently hasn’t scheduled discussions with its own unions beyond an agreement with the transit workers to comply with federal funding mandates.
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The Wisconsin Supreme Court race heats up as a state appeals court sends Wisconsin’s “non-fiscal” union-busting budget repair bill to the high court, citing too many issues that require clarification. The usually boring Spring election was already plenty hot and if anyone needed any help figuring out why having a partisan conservative on that panel might be a problem, it should be crystal clear now. Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce is shaking the bushes for money to protect their guy and the Greater Wisconsin Committee continues to run a very pointed ad on the opposite side. Big winner from all of this noise is Assistant Attorney General Joanne Kloppenburg.
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It turns out Senator Randy Hopper’s “friend” who picked up a job in the Dept. of Regulation and Licensing – something Hopper said he didn’t help with – didn’t even have to apply for the job. Daily Kos jumps all over it and has no problem collecting cash to run an Internet campaign against Hopper:
The more money they collect, the longer they run it.
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The La Crosse County GOP opens a headquarters in an attempt to retain the Assembly seat formerly held by Mike Huebsch, who is now Secretary of the Dept. of Administration, as well as fend off recall efforts for GOP Senator Dale Kapanke. Both could be tall orders for them. Along with Hopper, Kapanke looks to be one of the more vulnerable Republican senators in the recall mix. The GOP’s brand in Wisconsin is looking mighty tarnished for a group that swept into the governor’s office and majorities of both houses of the legislature a bit over four months ago. Stay tuned.
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An Indiana prosecutor becomes the second public official from the Hoosier State to lose his job over dumb remarks about the situation in Wisconsin. Carlos F. Lam, a Johnson County deputy prosecutor, resigned yesterday after admitting he sent an email last month urging Walker to discredit labor union protests in his state by orchestrating a fake assault on himself. He joins Indiana Deputy Attorney General Jeff Cox, who was fired last month after he suggested that police use live ammunition on protesters who had poured into Wisconsin’s Capitol. Is it any wonder that Dick Armey and FreedomWorks chose Indiana for a meeting this week?
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A group calling itself the “Foundation for State Leadership” begins an ad campaign against Democratic Senator Jim Holperin. It’s hard to say who they are, but probably the usual far right-wing suspects (speaking of tarnished brands.)
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Jesse Jackson has been a regular visitor to Wisconsin over the past few weeks. He will visit UW-Oshkosh and UW-Stevens Point Monday; UW-La Crosse on Tuesday and close his tour at UW-Madison.