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View Diary: Stay away for now, WI Dems. It's a trap. (148 comments)

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  •  It's not a trap. And the Senators must return. (6+ / 0-)

    Look, it's not a complex trap, OK?  It just isn't.  

    Simple reason: formal procedures would allow the Senators to once again flee, if they had to.  The required notification time would give them ample time to drive to South Beloit.

    Complicated reason: The resulting political fallout would be even more disasterous for the GOP than what they've seen so far.  Walker is quite possibly insane, but not every GOP Assemblyperson is not.

    Also, for similar political reasons the DEM Senators must return.  First, their return at tomorrow's rally will result in a massive show of support.  Second, staying away would give GOP bombthrowers ammo to do the one thing they can do.

    No, this fight goes to a new phase.  Recalls.  The trump card is ours, but it will take WORK.

    Rollin' up my sleeves in Kenosha...

    •  Do you honestly not believe that there (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dunvegan, Quicklund, sullivanst, GAladybug

      would be no way to move things along -- like introducing an amendment to reinstate this collective bargaining provision during the overall budget vote -- such that they could maintain a quorum even if the Democrats fled again?

      As I recall, they got a legislative opinion that so long as the Dems were there at the beginning of a session, they could continue doing business even without a quorum.  (My understanding of procedure is that you don't lose quorum until there's a quorum call, and if any Dem remains behind to do a quorum call then there is a quorum; you can't phone the quorum call in.)  I think that your analysis is probably correct for a bill but wrong for an amendment to a bill.  Maybe you're right, but I'd be surprised if this couldn't be engineered.

      As for the complicated reason, I offer you a choice of folk sayings: "In for a penny, in for a pound," and "might as well be hanged for a sheep as for a lamb."  For Republicans, making the Democrats look weak, by tricking them, is a good thing.  It doesn't matter if it makes them look evil.  The voting public hates "weak" for than it does "evil."

      I think that at least a week of focusing on the energy giveaway before returning would be smart politics.  Failing to get an assurance of no bounce-rooski would be political malpractice.  And they have to let the public know that the fully realize, when they come back, that it Republicans want to reveal themselves to be the most underhanded scoundrels in the history of state politics, they could indeed be walking into a trap.  It's theater.  You need a compelling story.

      Imagine if, the day after that great rally, Fitzgerald says "you know, why spend all this time on lawsuits, let's pass that provision again just to be sure, now that we have a quorum, OK guys?"  He can make it seem so reasonable.  My guess is that, without proper preparation, that will be seen as extremely deflating.  We need to be aware of that prospect and nip it in its bud.

      Unplug the Koch machine! It's swallowing people's money!

      by Seneca Doane on Fri Mar 11, 2011 at 08:20:52 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Occam's Razor (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        exterris

        No I do not generally believe in absolutes.  There is no reason to believe in absolutes in tis situation.  So no there is no way to say 100% that the GOP might not be able to perform some sort of unexpected hocus pocus.

        That's not the point.  The point is your strategy does only one thing - it eliminates the possibility of an extremely, extremely unlikely outcome.  The GOP has already passed the bill.  As I type this comment, the radio is informing me Scott Walker just signed the bill into law.

        There is no reason the GOP would 'trick' the Democrats into passing a bill that is already signed into law.  There is less reason for the GOP to announce, "Hey we broke the law last week so that bill Scottie just signed?  It's illegal too.  Why did we break so many laws?  In order to trick the Democrats into coming back to Wisconsin!"

        Put simply, that ain't smart politics.  Even by GOP standards.

        Furthermore, your strategy would lpay into the one, the only sub-issue in which the GOP out-polls the Dems.  Polling shows slightly more Wisconsin voters disapprove of the 14 being in Illinois.  Staying there woudl reinforce the only small part of the debate in which the GOP is winning.

        Bottom line ... this diary is moot,  The Senators are coming home.  The next phase begins.  Don't fret.  The next phase is winning the April 5th SC election.  THAT will hit the GOP in the gonads.

        Solidarity.

        •  They'd say "we're just doing this to be safe" (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Lucy Montrose

          and "this way we're rendering the court cases moot and saving everyone a lot of time and money and easing up the pressure on the judicial system."  They don't have to admit a damned thing if they don't want to do a victory dance.

          I'm not fretting, but I'm glad that this is out there.  If the Republicans do pull some trash, at least we can say the Democrats thought of it ahead of time, instead of being suckered, and discounted the possibility because they thought that no one would be that shifty.

          Solidarity back atcha.  Knock 'em dead on April 5!

          Unplug the Koch machine! It's swallowing people's money!

          by Seneca Doane on Fri Mar 11, 2011 at 09:30:56 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  The ship has sailed (0+ / 0-)

            The bill is signed into law.  There is nothing to be gained by boycotting a second identical bill introduced for a vote, if such a thing were even possible.  The law exists.

            Energy now goes to recall, not Illinois.

            •  We may be failing to communicate here (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Quicklund

              If the law was not passed in a lawful matter, it does not "exist" in the relevant respect: it cannot have legal effect.  Can we begin by agreeing on that much?

              Unplug the Koch machine! It's swallowing people's money!

              by Seneca Doane on Fri Mar 11, 2011 at 12:44:07 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Plezse refer to my detailed post above (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Seneca Doane

                I understand your scenario.  I repeat that I find it implausible to begin with, a GOP political disaster were they to attempt it, and a waste of Democratic resources to remain in Illinois in either case.

            •  focusing of resources (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Quicklund

              It is not so much giving up on a particular point, but it is more like the marshalling and concentrating of resources and thought to fight the battle that can be won. Guerrilla tactics are meant only to delay; battles need to be identified that can be won.  You can fight forever and accomplish nothing or you can plan your battles and strike with strength.  

              I knew a month ago that SB11 would pass muster and be signed by Walker.  It was not that difficult to ascertain as they held a significant majority in both houses and the fact that the governor is an ubercon.  It was bound to pass despite the courageous effort of the Senate Dems.  

              However, it cost the Republicans more political currency than they wanted to spend as they painted themselves in a bad light to much of the nation with the exception of the wingnuts.  And, of course, it aroused the solidarity of fair minded people in all walks of life.  It is time to go ahead and look forward to a winnable engagement… that being the recall elections that could signal changes ahead in legislative representation.  

              In addition, the April 5 election of a Supreme Court Judge and the Milwaukee County Executive could abruptly change the political landscape for the Republicans.  The election of JoAnne Kloppenburg to the Supreme Court would change the make-up to 4-3 liberal.  The election of Chris Abele would cleanse the demons with a true negotiatorfrom the post previously held by our disingenuous governor.

              “Lay down your arms,” spoke King Xerxes of Persia at Themopylae.  King Leonidas of Sparta replied, “Come take them!”

        •  correcto mundo, Quicklund (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Quicklund, Seneca Doane

          The simplest answer and most direct action are characteristic of most of their tactics.  Walker’s actions in the last two days are perfect examples of an ordinary man flaying about in an extraordinary situation.

          He cannot even understand that he misspoke.  He no longer needs the stub period money to balance the current budget??  Where is the need for the $135MM separated from the original bill??  Wisconsin voters can see through this.  

    •  There's one problem with this reasoning (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Seneca Doane

      Which is that once a quorum is established, Walker clearly believes it lasts for that legislative day.

      We've seen in the US Senate, the concept of the legislative day is not exactly the same as a calendar day. In particular, a legislative day doesn't end until an adjournment. It'd be possible to establish a quorum, announce any meetings needed, and then stay in session until the notice requirements are met. However, it's not even clear that the budget repair bill is in a stage in which significant formality is still required - the Demcorats fled the state because it was ready to come to a vote. And assuming no debate has taken place on the budget "repair" bill since the passage of the separate union-busting measure, the budget "repair" presumably still also includes the union-busting language.

      I have to say, I'm still concerned that they've returned. I had the exact same thought as Seneca.

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