Could be the beginning of the end for our Democracy?
Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker told the media yesterday and again this morning that he is unwilling to compromise on his so-called “budget repair” proposal that limits state workers’ collective bargaining rights – essentially destroying their union. In response, the state capital in Madison has been the scene of a weeklong protest against Governor Walker and Republican state lawmakers. 14 Democratic state Senators who fled Wisconsin to prevent the bill from being passed have now reportedly raised more than $280,000 from 11,000 donors all around the country to fight for the cause.
And it appears that public opinion of Governor Walker could be slipping. According to a new poll released by the AFL-CIO – Walker’s job approval rating has slipped to just 41%. Today – Republicans in the state senate will resume legislative business with or without the democrats. State senate rules require a quorum of 20 senators present to vote on fiscal legislation like Walker’s budget bill – but only 17 senators are required to vote for all other matters. Since there are 19 Republicans in the senate – they have a quorum to conduct business without the minority present.
And there are talks that Walker’s bill may be repackaged as non-fiscal legislation and passed this week with only the Republicans present and voting. One overlooked part of Walker’s bill that could get passed solely by Republicans allows the state to sell off heating, cooling, and power plans to private companies. Guess who would benefit most from that? The Koch brothers who own several power companies in the state! The same guys who gave Walker more than $40,000 in political contributions, affiliated with the groups who laundered over $3 million through the Republican Governor's association to get Walker elected, and spent god knows how much bussing in Tea Partiers over the weekend to confront union protestors. Talk about a quid pro quo.
If Governor Walker succeeds in dismantling the unions in Wisconsin – then this could be the beginning of the end for our democracy and the rise of one-party rule in America. If you can get unions out of the way – then just the billionaires and transnational corporations are left to run politics in America. As the Middle East ascends in democracy – America descends into kleptocracy.