As protests mount in Wisconsin over Republican Governor Scott Walker's blatant attempt at union-busting
, the battle lines are clearly drawn.
On the side of teachers, librarians, bus drivers, janitors, and the thousands of other Wisconsinites who are defending their right to have a say in the terms of their employment -- God:
Milwaukee Archbishop Jerome E. Listecki on Wednesday said in a letter to lawmakers that workers should not be "marginalized" ... He said in the letter there is a "moral obligation each of us has to respect the legitimate rights of workers.”
Not to mention the Green Bay Packers (who I understand are pretty popular in Wisconsin), Wisconsin Senate Democrats, the Democratic National Committee, and the President.
On Walker's side? Himself (and he says he won't be "bullied"). And every Republican and conservative who spent last year insisting that people with tea bags dangling from their ears and screaming about "death panels" were the voice of America, and who are now describing the thousands of Wisconsinites who object to Walker's plan to take away over a half-a-century of their rights to pay for his tax cuts for special interests as "union thugs" and "rioters."
Meanwhile, Walker's union-busting bill is on hold while the Wisconsin 14 -- the Democratic Senators who left the state -- remain in their undisclosed location:
"We're going to be staying away until we hear that they are taking the right to organize seriously," Larson continued, referring to Republicans. "They're going after 50 years of history in one week. Until they take that off the table, it's a non-starter."
Can Walker do anything about it?
According to Article IV, Section 7 of Wisconsin's constitution, the legislature "may compel the attendance of absent members in such manner and under such penalties as each house may provide."
What that meant on Thursday, according to the legislature's Sergeant at Arms office, was literally searching around the Capitol looking for the missing senators.
... at which point Walker can request that law enforcement join the search. The same law enforcement that has expressed solidarity with the missing Democrats and who can't cross state lines to get them.
So, what can we look forward to today? Well, for kids in the Madison area, their third consecutive day off. And for everyone else, a noon rally featuring AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka.
And the protests are spreading ... stay tuned.