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Monday, February 28, 2011

WI Gov. Scott Walker losing battle with Unions, orders Capitol windows blotted shut

Chanting "Recall Walker" in Capitol        Image by BlueRobot via Flickr

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Update 5:00 PM EST-Pictures added to the story from Wisconsin by Eric Ming at @EricMing5.
The AFL-CIO is reporting on their official blog site that embattled Governor Scott Walker (R) of Wisconsin is trying to deny protesters in the Madison, WI rotunda building from basic receiving food supplies.
Photo Credit-Eric Ming5 
Political Communications Director of the AFL-CIO Eddie Vale, who is at the location with the protesters, have supplied the following information to the union organization, at approximately 2:30 PM EST this afternoon.
"As we speak, Gov. Scott Walker and the Senate R’s are literally having the windows of the capital welded shut to keep people from passing food into the building to the people inside....
Photo Credit-Eric Ming5
"Our attorneys are collecting affidavits from the people who witnessed this, along with people who have been illegally denied access to a public, government, building."  
"We will be filing for a TRO [temporary restraining order] to open the Capitol. It is a sad for democracy when Governor Walker and his R Senate allies are locking the people of Wisconsin out of their own state capitol," the AFL-CIO Blog cited.
As reported on the Reach Out Job Search News Blog on February 27th, Gov. Walker appears to be losing in his efforts to end collective bargaining agreements within the state of Wisconsin

The Washington Post this afternoon and initially the WI-AFL-CIO on February 28th confirmed that State Senator Dale Schultz (R), along with four other Republican legislators are engaged in talks with the 14 Democratic State Senators at an undisclosed location to vote down Walker's bill. 

State Senator Schultz, according to the Washington Post article by Greg Sargent, is also receiving threats from other Republicans who oppose his efforts to find compromise among other GOPers Wisconsin who support Gov. Walkers union-busting effort.
"The fact remains that he is involved in trying to persuade his fellow Republicans to reach a compromise with labor and Dems. And this isn't sitting well with his GOP colleagues", the spokesperson noted.
A spokesman for Schultz declined to discuss the threats but did not deny that actions of this nature were occurring.
"I can't comment on what happened in the closed caucus," he said. "I do know that Senator Schultz remains on good working terms with his Republican colleagues, and continues to work with them towards a compromise", the spokesperson cited to Sargent.
Walker, in a final act of desperation, has issued an order to force 14 state Democratic Senators, in a undisclosed location, to return back to work immediately or saying the state will lose its chance to refinance $165 million in bonds if the bill isn't passed by Tuesday, March 1st.
"Failure to return to work and cast their votes will lead to more painful and aggressive spending cuts in the very near future," Mr. Walker, a Republican, said in a statement February 28th. "This is the Senate Democrats' 24-hour notice."
Democratic state senators fled to Illinois on Feb. 17 and have remained at large, refusing to return until collective-bargaining restrictions are removed from the bill.
State Senator Fred Risser (D) said to the Wall Street Journal that Gov. Walker's deadline on the bond issue will not sway his colleagues to return to Wisconsin on Monday. 
"The bond threat is not going to scare us one way or another," Mr. Risser said. "The 14 of us are still united."
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