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21 April 2012

FollowUp 25: Wisconsin Republican Dirty Tricks

As I have mentioned before, it is normal with an election coming up that candidates, liberal or conservative, tend to move toward the center.  Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker is not normal.

Mr. Walker is doubling down in his attack on teachers.
Madison - Gov. Scott Walker used his broad new powers to reshape a rule to lower inflation-based raises that public unions can negotiate by 30% or more for teachers in public schools and technical colleges.
The rule change would not use an individual's actual salary as a "base salary" to calculate raises and would exclude factors such as a teacher's higher degree.
There are two aspects of this that are typical of the Governor and reasons to support a recall.  First for teachers, this is another huge slap in the face and hit to the wallet.  Teachers who go on to earn a masters degree or doctorate are usually paying out of pocket for that degree and the compensation for learning more for their students is higher pay over time, which may go away.  Further, limiting pay increases to cost of living increases while requiring teachers to pay a greater percentage of their pension and healthcare means a net cut to the take home paycheck.  There will likely be a lawsuit over this change.
Katy Lounsbury, a Madison labor attorney, said the rules effectively neuter teachers unions in their bargaining over salaries. She said the rules may result in legal action because she believes they violate people's rights to associate.
"It certainly seems worthy of a challenge," she said. "It penalizes members of a union."
Second, this is happening while other public sector employees are being rewarded with bonuses, even while the state is running in the red.
MADISON, Wis. - Gov. Scott Walker has quietly reinstated a program to give merit raises and bonuses to some state workers even as he preaches cost-cutting and pushed through a bill eliminating most public employees' collective bargaining rights.
An analysis of data obtained by The Associated Press shows Wisconsin agencies have handed out more than $765,000 in bonuses and merit raises this year to 218 employees. The money was distributed under a program suspended by former Gov. Jim Doyle but reinstated by Walker last year.
The raises come as the state faces a $143 million shortfall and after the collective bargaining law required thousands of workers to contribute more to their pensions and health care.
This combination of acts looks like Mr. Walker is continuing to play favorites and reward cronies while punishing the unions that he sees as his enemies.  Given his attacks, the unions certainly are his enemies by now.

The ballots are approaching, primaries on 8 May and recall election on 5 June.  The dirty tricks continue.

So, what does Mr. Walker think about all of this?  He was interviewed by Stuart Varney on the Your World with Neil Cavuto Show on Friday.

It should be pointed out that Mr. Walker is a liar when saying that Republicans prevailed in all six recalls in 2011. The Republicans won four and the Democrats won two.  That is not "We ultimately prevailed in each of those races."

Regarding the money, 24% of Governor Walker's donors are sending in big money.  That is a huge percentage for a state campaign.  He neither addressed where the big money is coming from (think Koch brothers) nor how much is from out of state (think Koch brothers).

No mention is made of Arthur Kohl-Riggs, the Governor's primary challenger. Keeping to form, Mr. Walker proceeds with a cocky attitude and divisive attacks on labor in his state.

16 November 2011, Original Pedantic Political Ponderings post.
30 November 2011, FollowUp 1.
4 December 2011, FollowUp 2.
11 December 2011, FollowUp 3.
14 December 2011, FollowUp 4.
15 December 2011, FollowUp 5.
30 December 2011, FollowUp 6.
13 January 2012, FollowUp 7.
17 January 2012, FollowUp 8.
25 January 2012, FollowUp 9.
2 February 2012, FollowUp 10.
9 February 2012, FollowUp 11.
12 February 2012, FollowUp 12.
18 February 2012, FollowUp 13.
22 February 2012, FollowUp 14.
6 March 2012, FollowUp 15.
12 March 2012, FollowUp 16.
16 March 2012, FollowUp 17.
30 March 2012, FollowUp 18.
31 March 2012, FollowUp 19.
3 April 2012, FollowUp 20.
4 April 2012, FollowUp 21.
11 April 2012, FollowUp 22.
14 April 2012, FollowUp 23.
17 April 2012, FollowUp 24.

29 April 2012, FollowUp 26.
2 May 2012, FollowUp 27.
6 May 2012, FollowUp 28.
10 May 2012, FollowUp 29.
13 May 2012, FollowUp 30.
23 May 2012, FollowUp 31.
24 May 2012, FollowUp 32.
30 May 2012, FollowUp 33.
2 June 2012, FollowUp 34.
4 June 2012, FollowUp 35.
5 June 2012, FollowUp 36.

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