The redistricting mess that they did secretly awaiting court decision (doesn't look good because the court offered to let the GOP redraw again with input from the plaintiffs and they said NO), there's an injunction against the Voter ID Law, GAB staff recommending recalls against 4 Republican State Senators because of an overwhelming number of valid signatures, ONE MEELYION signatures to recall his own ass (and his Lt. Governor, too), and the John Doe Probe nipping at his heels and qualifying for a legal defense fund (meaning he's either under investigation for or about to be charged with a felony), and then there's today.
60-65 THOUSAND angry badgers showed up in Madison again to protest and rally.
Hey, Scotty! We're back!
I know folks will be around with pictures. The one lousy one I took with my cell phone disappeared into the vapor, but I'll set the scene for them with local Milwaukee coverage:
WTMJ: Nice video.
Update: Kudos to Christian Dem in NC for finding the WTMJ video on You Tube and posting it in the comments:
WISN: No video, but a decent article.
Fox6: No video yet.
CBS58: Crickets, nothing, nada, zilch. Someone needs to wake them up.
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has a decent article, photos, and video here. They're behind a paywall if you've viewed more than 20 articles per month so here's some snips:
"It's more of a celebration," said Peg Durkin, an art teacher from Ithaca who held up a sign that said "Wake Up the Base," on one side, and "Hey Walker, Does the Recall Occupy Your Thoughts?" on the other.
"It feels like we're turning the corner," Durkin added.
Lisa Olson, a school secretary from western Wisconsin, brought along a sign that showed a beaming face of Walker with the words, "Destroying Public Education Because I Can."
"The last two times I was here I froze," said Olson, a veteran of last year's rallies. "It's more hopeful this time."
The speakers talked about union rights and potential recall elections, as labor and its Democratic allies seek to oust Walker, Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch, and four GOP state senators.
Several speakers took verbal aim at Walker, as well as David and Charles Koch, industrialists who back conservative causes.
John Nichols of The Nation and The Capital Times linked the present political struggle to the state's progressive history.And now for the Republican whining:
"Over a year ago when the governor signed Act 10 into law, most of the major media of the United States said this struggle was over," Nichols said. "The political class, the media class, the elites of this country have tried again and again to bury this movement. And we have pushed the coffin lid off and clawed our way back to the surface."
"We have never allowed them to bury this movement," he said. "They said it would be impossible to gather 540,000 signatures to recall a governor of an American state. And they were right. It was impossible for Wisconsinites to gather 540,000 signatures. We never shoot that low. We gathered 1 million signatures."
Wisconsin GOP spokesman Ben Sparks criticized the rally.Interesting how he doesn't mention our nationwide record 6 consequetive months of job losses.
In a statement, Sparks said, "Today liberal union activists conclude their 'misinformation' tour in their never-ending attempt to distort Governor Walker's record of turning our state around. The fact is that under Governor Walker, unemployment has dropped to 6.9%, the lowest it's been since 2008, and he's laid the groundwork for economic growth."
Crowds were huge! Not a single charter bus was available in Milwaukee because they were all in use. My own union had to use a 25 person shuttle.
Firefighters were there with bagpipers. Cops were there. The Teamsters were there. Trade unions, public unions, families, people with dogs and kids, everyone marching around the square in perfect 60-something degree weather (in March? In Wisconsin? God must be on our side). Everyone friendly, everyone polite as always.
The one fly in the ointment was a guy with a very large, professionally made Stand With Walker sign near the speakers stand. People left him alone. I'm sure he wanted someone to pick a fight, but no, he got ignored.
I couldn't hear the speeches because of the wind and crowd, but that was fine (someone will hopefully post them on You Tube - or here). I spent the time chatting with fellow Kossacks Ruleoflaw, Quicklund, Vacilando, and Peptabysmal. Couldn't manage a meet up with noiseofrain or Giles Goat Boy.
So here's the appetizer before a Kossack with pictures shows up with the Main Course!
Governor Snotty's gonna need a bigger crying towel.
Update: Mark Anderson serves up the first course with fantastic pictures here.
Update: Another yummy course of pictures and stories from ruleoflaw here.
Update: More delicious noms from Giles Goat Boy here.
Update: And here comes noiseofrain with a juicy offering of stories, pics and video here.