Republican Jeff Fitzgerald Plans to Run for U.S. Senate in 2012
Jeff Fitzgerald announced his plan to run for Herb Kohl’s senate seat in 2012. Jeff is the Assembly Speaker and the brother of Scott Fitzgerald (who is the State Senate Majority Leader). His father, Steve Fitzgerald, was appointed by Scott Walker to head the Wisconsin State Patrol (an agency that was spared from Walker’s union-busting efforts). What a tangled web…
Update: Voter ID Legislation In Wisconsin
The latest version of a bill requiring voters to show photo ID at the polls would make sweeping changes to Wisconsin elections - moving the September primary to August, tightening rules on absentee ballots and ending straight-ticket voting.
A hearing on the bill is slated for 10 a.m. Wednesday, and Republicans who run the Assembly will meet in private later in the day to discuss any changes to the measure.
Assembly Speaker Jeff Fitzgerald (R-Horicon) said his caucus is largely behind the latest version by Rep. Jeff Stone (R-Greendale), but may want to tweak it. He said he hopes to pass the bill in May and forward it to the Senate.
Read the full story here. Wisconsinites, you can testify tomorrow at the hearing! Interestingly, the Department of Transportation and the Government Accountability Board have estimated that this reform would cost at least $4.8 million to implement.
The New York Times had a great editorial today on the Republican push for tightening voter ID requirements.
Walker & Co. Ban Sick Days That Milwaukee Voted For
The Wisconsin Assembly will be considering a bill that will pre-empt Milwaukee’s Sick Leave Ordinance. The ordinance was passed by voters in 2008, with 69% favoring it. The bill to nullify Milwaukee’s ordinance was already passed by Republican Senators while the Wisconsin 14 were away. So much for “local control” and all that jazz. But hey, at least Mayor Barrett will be happy.
I propose this as the official drink of FItzwalkerstan: Grapefruit Margaritas… why? Because it really has nothing to do with Wisconsin, but it will numb us enough to survive the regime. [Repo: Confessions of a Foodie Bride]
Wisconsin GOP Using the Open Records Law to Intimidate Critics
A few days ago, UW-Madison Professor William Cronon wrote a thoughtful, well-researched op-ed for The New York Times.
The Republican Party of Wisconsin responded by filing an open records request for Cronon’s emails (although they misspelled his name in the press release they issued). Specifically, they requested all emails “into and out of Cronon’s state email account from January 1, 2011 to present which reference any of the following terms: Republican, Scott Walker, recall, collective bargaining, AFSCME, WEAC, rally, union, Alberta Darling, Randy Hopper, Dan Kapanke, Rob Cowles, Scott Fitzgerald, Sheila Harsdorf, Luther Olsen, Glenn Grothman, Mary Lazich, Jeff Fitzgerald, Marty Beil, or Mary Bell.”
Cronon has started a blog about this issue and I would encourage you to check it out (it, too, is very thoughtful and well-written) and keep an eye on this story as it unfolds.
DA files open meetings complaint against Fitzgerald
The Dane County DA filed a complaint today alleging Jeff Fitzgerald violated the state’s open meetings law when a special committee convened to adopt the union busting bill last week. Article linked above.
Peter Barca, my new hero, brought out a megaphone. A megaphone is necessary when your Republican colleagues are known for turning off your microphone, ending debate without making a separate motion and closing the roll within seconds, and violating open meeting laws.
With 19 people still waiting to speak, debate was closed. Wisconsin workers lost their rights in a 53-42 vote.
Update from Wisco
The Madison Fire Department has issued a statement saying the whole welding-of-the-windows thing isn’t true.
In other news, Senator Scott Fitzgerald (of the Family Fitzgerald) made a motion to cut off the copy privileges of the Democratic Senators’ staffers. Yes, you read that correctly; he wants to deactivate the codes staffers use for the copy machines, (so… they’ll have to scan stuff more often?). That’ll show ‘em, Scotty!
AP: "Republicans in the Wisconsin Assembly took the first significant action on their plan to strip collective bargaining rights from most public workers, abruptly passing the measure early Friday morning before sleep-deprived Democrats realized what was happening."
I can hardly fucking believe the sliminess of this:
This shit goes beyond party lines, this goes beyond pro-union anti-union, this is not democracy. How dare they open and close the rolls before Democrats even have a chance to vote.
“Hey do you want to strip unions of their right to collectively bargain?”
“Well actually n-.”
“Too late! The vote is closed.”
I’m shaking with fury right now…