• Support @GovWalker for doing what’s necessary to rein in out-of-control public sector pay and benefits #tcot 4:29 PM Feb 18th via web
• Donate now to support Governor Walker and WI GOP senators as they attempt to restore fiscal sanity http://mi.tt/StandWithWI via web
Amid President Obama accusing Walker of unleashing an assault on unions, thousands of frenzied protesting state employees, public workers, and teachers crowding Wisconsin’s capitol building, doctors handing out fake ‘sick’ notes to absentee teachers, state troopers sent out to find 14 AWOL Democrat state senators, Van Jones and MoveOn.org blowing the trumpet for union marches on all 50 states, Governor Walker delivered this fireside chat two days ago (2/22/11/0:
“Liberal big government interests are fighting efforts to rein in out-of-control public employee pay and benefits in Wisconsin,” Romney said in a Thursday statement. “It is critical that we stand with the Wisconsin GOP as it stands up for the rights of the taxpayer.”
His Free and Strong America PAC is sending the maximum $5,000 contribution to the Republican Party of Wisconsin.
The fight is part of Walker’s battle to solve the state’s budget woes, and union protestors have come out in force to oppose his plan.
Today, after an unprecedented 40-hour debate that began on Tuesday, Democrat legislators have consented to limit final debate on Walker’s bill to a 10 minute time limit per individual – allowing the bill to be voted on today. The final version of the bill can’t move to the governor’s desk until one of the 14 democrat Senators returns to complete a quorum. Gov Walker says massive lay-offs could be the result if the bill isn’t completed.
UPDATE @ 6:05 PM PST – Wisconsin state legislators have been debating Gov Walker’s bill for 58 hour straight now. Word is the bill will be voted on tonight. State troopers came up empty-handed on their search to locate Democrat state senators within state boundaries. Stay tuned.
UPDATE 2 @ 11:41 PM PST – Wisconsin House Republicans have passed Gov Walker’s bill. We’ll see what happens tomorrow…
[…]The vote put an end to three straight days of punishing debate, but the political standoff over the bill is far from over. The measure now goes to the Senate, where minority Democrats have been missing for a week, preventing a vote in that chamber.
No one knows when – or if – the Senate Democrats will return from their hideout in Illinois.
The governor has said that if the bill does not pass by Friday, the state will miss a deadline to refinance $165 million of debt and will be forced to start issuing layoff notices next week. However, the deadline may not as strict as he says.
Evidently there was some drama:
After more than 60 hours in which Democrats threw out dozens of amendments and delivered rambling speeches, Republicans halted debate early Friday. In a matter of seconds, they had approved the bill. Only a few Democrats realized what was going on and managed to vote before the roll was closed.
The Democrats rose from their seats and rushed at the Republicans shouting, “Shame!” as the Republicans exited the chamber.
UPDATE 3 Feb 25, 2011:
Read Gov Walker’s ‘repair-the-budget’ bill here.
► Jayde Wyatt