Gabe at Ace of Spades HQ brings the good news that Judge Sumi’s amended TRO (PDF) to halt implementation of the budget repair only orders the Wisconsin Secretary of State not to publish or implement the law. There are two major problems with that:
(1) this law has already been published and (2) the Secretary of State does not “implement” the law in the sense that his office does not deal with withholding of union dues, setting pensions withholdings, etc. The Wisconsin AG says implementation is ongoing and will continue.
Is this judge really so incompetent that she doesn’t understand the law?
Another thing many people may not realize is that even though election day for Justice Prosser’s seat is next week, he will continue on the Supreme Court until August.
… which means that no matter what happens next week, he will still be on the court when the TRO is considered. He will also likely still be on the bench when the merits of the Open Meetings argument are ruled on, though that will depend more on how much the liberal Chief Justice can drag her feet if Prosser isn’t reelected. Keep in mind that there won’t be a drawn-out appeals process here because the appellate court already took a pass on the case.
So, even if he does lose the election, all is not lost.
None of this is reason to sit back and relax. Conservatives in Wisconsin and elsewhere should understand that Wisconsin is ground zero in the public-union budget battles, and what happens there will have repercussions everywhere. Republicans have a massive fight on their hands against a powerful, well funded and ruthless adversary.
Michael Barone asks: Where’s the Tea Party?:
Next Tuesday voters will have their say in an election for state Supreme Court. Incumbent Republican David Prosser is being challenged by Democrat JoAnne Kloppenburg, who is giving strong hints that she’ll uphold a dubious ruling by a lower court that the legislature acted illegally in limiting public employee unions’ powers. A Prosser defeat would give Democrats a 4-3 edge on the court.
Off-year elections tend to have low turnout, and the public employee unions are working hard to get their voters out. It’s unclear whether Tea Partiers and others whose enthusiasm and energy transformed Wisconsin from a 56-42 percent Obama state in 2008 to a 52-46 percent Walker state in 2010 will be similarly energized.
In addition, both parties have threatened to recall at least some of the other side’s state senators. Recall petitions are being circulated and require relatively few signatures.
The IWV poll says that voters would oppose recalling Democratic state senators by 60 to 38 percent but oppose recalling Republicans by only 52 to 43 percent.
There’s an assumption by many Republicans, seemingly shared by Walker, that voters settled these issues definitively in the November elections. But the IWV poll suggests that voters are not necessarily well-informed and have been swayed by those who frame the issue as collective bargaining “rights.”
Respondents become more favorable to Walker’s position when informed that public employees are paid 45 percent more than private-sector union members and that union dues have been automatically deducted and go to support candidates workers may not favor.
In New Jersey, a more Democratic state than Wisconsin, Gov. Chris Christie has won majority support in his struggles with public employee unions by making his case repeatedly, with facts and figures, and with a forcefulness that has made his town hall appearances a YouTube hit.
Rally to support our efforts! Sen. Maj. Leader Scott Fitzgerald
Green Bay, Wisconsin
Saturday, April 2, 2011
West Mason Street Office
2685A W. Mason St.
Tax day rally
Saturday, April 16, 2011
We are buying every available airtime slot on Wisconsin TV – statewide – to run this ad. We need your help, urgently. With so little time we have to raise as much money as we can, so we can purchase this airtime for the TV ad. You can now donate to our Wisconsin State PAC.
As The National Review notes:
Wisconsin supreme court justice David Prosser went to bed one night a respected former prosecutor, and woke up the next morning the target of a $3 million union-run smear campaign, falsely accused of being an enabler of pedophiles. That is what you get when you oppose the political machine that has been fleecing taxpayers in Wisconsin and elsewhere for a generation. Or, as in the case of Justice Prosser, when they suspect you might merely stand in their way and do your job.