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Category “2011 Elections”

CBA Law Valid">Supreme Court Overturns Sumi, Rules CBA Law Valid

Just Break­ing…

The state Supreme Court today threw out a Dane County judge’s rul­ing inval­i­dat­ing the col­lec­tive bar­gain­ing law, accord­ing to online court records.

The deci­sion had not yet been posted at the court’s site by late this after­noon. But a post­ing at the court’s site for the appeal described an order in which Dane County Judge Maryann Sumi’s orders in the case are vacated and declared void.

The brief descrip­tion on the court site said the court con­cluded the Leg­is­la­ture did not vio­late a pro­vi­sion in the Wis­con­sin Con­sti­tu­tion that the doors of each house shall be open except when pub­lic wel­fare requires secrecy. Dur­ing oral argu­ments last week, there were a series of ques­tions about pub­lic access to a con­fer­ence com­mit­tee meet­ing in which law­mak­ers took up the leg­is­la­tion. That meet­ing was the basis of the open meet­ings vio­la­tion Sumi found in inval­i­dat­ing the law.

You can read the rul­ing here.

In it, you find the jus­tices ruled 7–0 that Sumi over-stepped her bounds when it came to the sep­a­ra­tion of pow­ers on agree­ing to take the case, and 4–3 on the vio­la­tion of the open meet­ings law; i.e. Sumi’s ruling.

UPDATE: From the ruling:

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that we have con­cluded that in enact­ing the Act, the leg­is­la­ture did not employ a process that vio­lated Arti­cle IV, Sec­tion 10 of the Wis­con­sin Con­sti­tu­tion, which pro­vides in rel­e­vant part:  “The doors of each house shall be kept open except when the pub­lic wel­fare shall require secrecy.”  The doors of the sen­ate and assem­bly were kept open to the press and mem­bers of the pub­lic dur­ing the enact­ment of the Act.  The doors of the sen­ate par­lor, where the joint com­mit­tee on con­fer­ence met, were open to the press and mem­bers of the pub­lic.  Wis­con­sin­Eye broad­cast the pro­ceed­ings live.  Access was not denied.[1] There is no con­sti­tu­tional require­ment that the leg­is­la­ture pro­vide access to as many mem­bers of the pub­lic as wish to attend meet­ings of the leg­is­la­ture or meet­ings of leg­isla­tive committees.

I had a cou­ple of ques­tions myself about what is “an open meet­ing” in the Inter­net age.  Glad to see the Jus­tices shared them.

UPDATE II:  On the Open Meet­ings Law Vio­la­tion Claim:

It also is argued that the Act is invalid because the leg­is­la­ture did not fol­low cer­tain notice pro­vi­sions of the Open Meet­ings Law for the March 9, 2011 meet­ing of the joint com­mit­tee on con­fer­ence.  It is argued that Wis. Stat. § 19.84(3) required 24 hours notice of that meet­ing and such notice was not given.  It is undis­puted that the leg­is­la­ture posted notices of the March 9, 2011 meet­ing of the joint com­mit­tee on con­fer­ence on three bul­letin boards, approx­i­mately 1 hour and 50 min­utes before the start of the meet­ing.  In the post­ing of notice that was done, the leg­is­la­ture relied on its inter­pre­ta­tion of its own rules of pro­ceed­ing.  The court declines to review the valid­ity of the pro­ce­dure used to give notice of the joint com­mit­tee on con­fer­ence.  See Stitt, 114 Wis. 2d at 361.  As the court has explained when leg­is­la­tion was chal­lenged based on alle­ga­tions that the leg­is­la­ture did not fol­low the rel­e­vant pro­ce­dural statutes, “this court will not deter­mine whether inter­nal oper­at­ing rules or pro­ce­dural statutes have been com­plied with by the leg­is­la­ture in the course of its enact­ments.”  Id. at 364.  “[W]e will not inter­med­dle in what we view, in the absence of con­sti­tu­tional direc­tives to the con­trary, to be purely leg­isla­tive concerns.”

I haven’t had a chance to read the Abra­ham­son / Bradley / Crooks decent, but I’ve seen on Twit­ter that the Chief Jus­tice doesn’t hes­i­tate to take a swipe at Jus­tice Prosser.

If true, grow up ma’am.

Also, expect to see calls of this as a par­ti­san court, and for Wis­con­sin to stop elect­ing its Supreme Court justices.

UPDATE III: On Doug LaFol­lette publishing:

¶10  Arti­cle IV, Sec­tion 17 of the Wis­con­sin Con­sti­tu­tion vests the leg­is­la­ture with the con­sti­tu­tional power to “pro­vide by law” for pub­li­ca­tion.  The leg­is­la­ture has set the require­ments for pub­li­ca­tion.  How­ever, the Sec­re­tary of State has not yet ful­filled his statu­tory duty to pub­lish a notice of pub­li­ca­tion of the Act in the offi­cial state news­pa­per, pur­suant to Wis. Stat. § 14.38(10)©.  Due to the vaca­tion of the cir­cuit court’s orders, there remain no imped­i­ments to the Sec­re­tary of State ful­fill­ing his oblig­a­tions under § 14.38(10)©.

Get at it Doug.

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Fred Clark — Great Communicator with the People

There is a rea­son Fred Clark barely sur­vived win­ning his own re-election to the Assem­bly last November. 

Things like this help explain why.

[Madi­son] — Rep. Fred Clark (D-Baraboo), run­ning in a recall elec­tion against Sen­a­tor Luther Olsen, was caught on tape last week say­ing he would like to “smack around” a woman in his district.

The com­ment was recorded on the home answer­ing machine of Sue and John Stapel­man of Bara­boo.  Clark phoned the fam­ily while mak­ing cam­paign calls, and had a short, curt con­ver­sa­tion with Sue Stapel­man.  Stapel­man then hung up the phone, but her answer­ing machine was still rolling, and caught Clark say­ing, “I feel like call­ing her back and smack­ing her around.”

John Hogan, direc­tor of the Com­mit­tee to Elect a Repub­li­can Sen­ate, said “This dis­turb­ing and inap­pro­pri­ate com­ment gives us an unfor­tu­nate glimpse of what Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Clark is like when he thinks no one is lis­ten­ing.  Domes­tic vio­lence is a dev­as­tat­ing prob­lem in our state , and abuse is on the rise. To be able to so freely threaten vio­lence against a woman, even in jest, shows a tremen­dous lack of character.”

Cou­pled with his record of killing jobs and increas­ing spend­ing, the mount­ing evi­dence of Fred Clark’s reck­less­ness and lack of com­mon sense will be flatly rejected by vot­ers at the polls this summer.”

Tran­scrip­tion of call from Fred Clark:

[Answer­ing machine picks up the call, then Sue Stapel­man picks up phone]
SS: “Yes”
FC: “Hi, this, uh, Ms. Stapel­ton?“
SS: “Yes it is.”
FC: “Hi, this is Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Fred Clark.”
SS: “Ok.”
FC: “Yes, I just want to give you and John a call again tonight.  You may know I’m run­ning against Luther Olsen here in the recall elec­tion in the 14th Sen­ate Dis­trict.”
SS: “Yeah, isn’t that a crime.” [hangs up]
[Answer­ing machine still record­ing]
FC: “Ok.  I feel like call­ing her back and smack­ing her around.”

Democ­rats get stuck with Clark tomor­row as their recall can­di­date ver­sus Olsen as the fil­ing dead­line for recalls sched­uled for July 12th is tomorrow.

I eagerly await to see how res­i­dent of Ripon, Steve Preste­gard, will com­ment on this.

Adden­dum — Since I’m get­ting blow­back on Twit­ter from a rather, inter­est­ing source on this topic, I ask all the lib­er­als who said Prosser call­ing Chief Jus­tice Shirley Abra­ham­son infa­mous names was a “HUGE SCANDAL who are no doubt going to blow this off as noth­ing what the dif­fer­ence is between the two exactly?

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NY Post Headline Writer">Best Job in America Yesterday: NY Post Headline Writer

I kid you not, the title of their edi­to­r­ial on Anthony Weiner’s self-inflicted fall from grace — “Erec­tions Have Consequences.”

Let us declare with cer­ti­tude the obvi­ous: Rep. Anthony Weiner has dis­graced his office, and him­self, and he needs to quit.

Never mind that he went before the TV cam­eras yes­ter­day, cried on cue and assumed “respon­si­bil­ity” for a litany of offenses to com­mon decency — includ­ing send­ing lewd mes­sages and reveal­ing pho­tos to young women on Twit­ter, and then lying about it.

Repeat­edly and egregiously.

Because there is a dif­fer­ence between tak­ing rhetor­i­cal respon­si­bil­ity for what one has done, and accept­ing the full con­se­quences of those actions — which in Weiner’s case would require his resignation.

He oblit­er­ated his bond of trust with New York’s 9th Con­gres­sional Dis­trict, ren­dered him­self and his office a national laugh­ing­stock, used that office to sat­isfy per­verse sex­ual urges — in the process, lay­ing him­self open to blackmail.

House Minor­ity Leader Nancy Pelosi appears to get it: Yes­ter­day she called for an Ethics Com­mit­tee probe of the mess (and maybe she can get Rep. Char­lie Rangel, who has some expe­ri­ence with such things, to show Weiner the ropes).

Yes, the con­gress­man insisted that there’s no need to resign, because “I don’t believe I did any­thing that vio­lates any law or my oath to my con­stituents” to uphold the Constitution.

Noth­ing about this should reflect on my offi­cial duties [or] my record.”


Let’s put it this way: Any offenses that result in a press con­fer­ence in which a mem­ber of Con­gress can rel­e­vantly be asked “Were you fully erect?” are offenses that dis­qual­ify that con­gress­man from pub­lic service.

It’s that simple.

My con­stituents have to make the deter­mi­na­tion,” he said.

Which is tech­ni­cally true.

But if Tony Weiner had a shred of per­sonal honor, he’d relieve them of that responsibility.

He won’t, because he is devoid of honor. That was made clear by his week­long cam­paign of lies and char­ac­ter assas­si­na­tion meant to deceive his wife of less than a year, his staff, his con­stituents and the gen­eral pub­lic — and to vil­ify Andrew Bre­it­bart, the online jour­nal­ist who first dis­closed the sala­cious pho­tos and messages.

Bre­it­bart has made mis­takes. But he’s scored impor­tant scoops, too.

Includ­ing this one.

Bot­tom line: Anthony Weiner betrayed his office and his con­stituents along with his wife. He has lost what­ever respect — and effec­tive­ness — he ever enjoyed as a mem­ber of Congress.

Now he’s fit only for cable-TV com­edy punch lines, and it’s going to get worse.

He needs to resign.


And since I may be the only right-wing blog­ger on Wis­con­sin pol­i­tics with the stones to say it, the same very much applies to State Sen­a­tor Randy Hop­per; if only just to spare us the expec­tant nuclear bombs set to explode on our tele­vi­sion sets.

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Oh My God, We’re Fielding “Straw Candidates”

Sorry, the reac­tion com­ing from nation­als like Greg Sar­gent and locals like James Rowen to this Dan Bice col­umn is hilar­i­ous, since NONE OF THEM gave a peep when crap like this was going on in 2010 when Democ­rats were field­ing fake “Tea Party” can­di­dates in a num­ber of House seats to try to keep their own incum­bents alive.

Hell, in Michi­gan, they got so des­per­ate, they filed fake paper­work and now peo­ple are going to jail for it.

Two Michi­gan Democ­rats were arraigned Wednes­day on elec­tion cor­rup­tion charges for allegedly prop­ping up of fake tea party can­di­dates in 2010, the Detroit News reports.

For­mer county Demo­c­ra­tic Party Chair­man Michael McGuin­ness (right) and ex-operations direc­tor Jason Bauer have been charged with forgery, putting peo­ple up for office with­out their knowl­edge and other charges. The two party lead­ers allegedly con­spired to field phony tea party can­di­dates in an appar­ent bid to siphon off GOP votes and boost Democ­rats in two Michi­gan County Com­mis­sion races and a state Sen­ate race last year, accord­ing to the news­pa­per. Sev­eral of the charges are felonies, some of which carry penal­ties of up to 14 years in prison.

McGuinnes and Bauer resigned their posi­tions in August. News reports indi­cate they have not com­mented on this week’s charges.

Last year, as tea party power grew across the coun­try, tea partiers began accus­ing Democ­rats and oth­ers of using their party label to run fake can­di­dates and skew elec­tions. A law­suit was filed in Florida last year where Democ­rats, includ­ing then-Rep. Alan Grayson, were accused of cre­at­ing a Florida Tea Party.

I believe the phrase one should be look­ing for is “Pay­back is a bitch.”  If these so-called “Straw Can­di­dates” are cre­ated, chances are they’ll be very legal — you know, like that fake Repub­li­can who ran against Bob Ziegel­bauer (Dis­claimer: My Cousin) in the 25th Assem­bly Dis­trict last year.

Hell, Politico ran a story on this very tac­tic last Octo­ber.  Can’t seem to find a post at “The Plum Line” con­demn­ing this tac­tic any­where in Sargent’s archives.

UPDATE: How quickly the State Demo­c­ra­tic Party, AFSCME, and even Dan Bice appar­ently, have for­got­ten the name “Andrew Wisniewski.”

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Thursday Quick Hits

Blog­ging from the auto repair shop today.  (Do I owe Ann Alt­house roy­al­ties now?)

I See Jay Leno in This Headline’s Future

WLUK Fox 11 out of Green Bay: Lamb named Fond du Lac Police Chief.”

In all seri­ous­ness, con­grat­u­la­tions to William Lamb, the cur­rent police chief of North Fond du Lac.  May your force never face another repeat of the mad­ness it con­fronted in March.

Van Sus­teren Calls Out Chief Jus­tice Abrahamson

This might just be the biggest Wis­con­sin ex-pat lawyer with a big enough rock to make a chip in Shirley’s glass house.

Greta Van Sus­teren, of Fox News and an Apple­ton native, just unloads on the house the Chief Jus­tice is keep­ing in the Capitol’s east wing. (Quick John Nichols and the Cap Times, try to tell us she’s wrong because of her dad’s work as Joe McCarthy’s cam­paign man­ager 60 years ago!)

You know I love Wisconsin….but what is with their state Supreme Court? It must be the most dys­func­tional Supreme Court in the union.  Per media reports, the Jus­tices say hor­ri­ble things to each other behind closed doors and then other Jus­tices sneak around, send emails and leak stuff to the press about their petty fights to make oth­ers look bad.  Yes, not only do they get in fights, but they have snitches!  Imag­ine a Supreme Court hav­ing name call­ing and snitches, weird, huh?

Are the Jus­tices of the Wis­con­sin Supreme Court really doing the job well for the peo­ple of  Wis­con­sin?  Would you feel con­fi­dant? When you read about the Supreme Court of Wis­con­sin, don’t you think “I am glad that is not my state Supreme Court!” These are extremely impor­tant times and the state Supreme Court has an impor­tant job.  This is not junior high so they should stop act­ing like it.

So why my head­line about the Chief Jus­tice Shirley Abra­ham­son ? Well..the buck has to stop some place and she is the top per­son.   Chief Jus­tice Abra­ham­son has been on the Supreme court since 1979 and Chief Jus­tice since 1996. That should have given her 15  years to develop the nec­es­sary skills to lead even a polit­i­cally frac­tured Bench to deci­sions that give con­fi­dence to the pub­lic.  That’s part of the job and if she is not mak­ing the grade, she should have some­one else do it.  The Chief Jus­tice job is to guide the court – most impor­tantly in dif­fi­cult times – so that the peo­ple of Wis­con­sin have con­fi­dence the cases are decided on the facts and the law.   Con­fi­dence that deci­sions are made not on petty squab­bles but the law mat­ters.   Now it looks like she is head of a col­lege soror­ity feud­ing with a fra­ter­nity.   Is she really a good exam­ple of a Chief Jus­tice? Is she lead­ing? is she guid­ing?  You tell me…

I have no idea who is caus­ing the prob­lems and who is pro­vok­ing what  - and it may be more than one Asso­ciate Jus­tice stir­ring the pot –  but let me repeat Chief Jus­tice Abra­ham­son is the leader (or at least is sup­posed to be with her title) and either should lead (yes, even in dif­fi­cult cir­cum­stances) or step down from Chief to Asso­ciate Justice.

The time is now for this Supreme Court to set an exam­ple – grow up or change jobs.

While I applaud Van Sus­teren for ‘telling it like it is’ when it comes to the per­sonal behind the scenes back-stabbing and snip­ing of Wisconsin’s Supreme Court, I remained con­vinced Chief Jus­tice Shirley Abra­ham­son will only leave the state’s high court in one fash­ion — feet first, in a pine box.

What­ever Hap­pened to Apprenticeships?

This is based off of a con­ver­sa­tion I’m hav­ing with the clerk at the auto shop, but what­ever hap­pened to have a 16 to 18 year old kid learn skills work­ing on a farm, an auto shop, or wher­ever?  Yeah, the pay would suck, but that wasn’t the point if you were 16 or 18 years old.  The point was you learned job skills you might use down the, work ethic, and kept your­self occu­pied, off the couch, and out of trouble.

When did the edu­ca­tion estab­lish­ment decide that “the trades” weren’t worth­while work and all kids must go to col­lege to prove them­selves?  No won­der we now have the cat­e­gory of “Work Amer­i­cans Won’t Do” when it comes to immi­gra­tion reform.

Chi­nese Kid Sells Kid­ney to Pur­chase iPad2, Other Gadgets

Words fail me.

A teenager in Huais­han, Anhui Province has sold one of his kid­neys to buy an iPad2 tablet com­puter, as reported by SZTV on June 1.

The 17-year-old man sur­named Zheng, a fresh­man in high school, got con­nected with a kidney-selling agent through the inter­net, who pledged to pay him 20,000 yuan ($3,084.45 ) for one of his kidneys.

On April 28 of this year, Zheng went to Chen­zhou, Hunan Province to have his kid­ney removed under the super­vi­sion of three so-called mid­dle­men, and received 22,000 yuan ($3,392.97). Then he returned home with a lap­top and an iPhone.

Zheng’s mother dis­cov­ered her son’s new elec­tronic prod­ucts and forced him to reveal how he came to afford them. Then she took Zheng to Chen­zhou and reported the mat­ter to local police. The three agents’ tele­phones have not been answered since that time.

Today’s Sign the End is Nigh

NBC is bring­ing back “Fear Factor.”

No word if Joe Rogan, who has made a name for him­self host­ing MMA events or so I’ve been told, will return as host.

Words Which Could Come­back to Bite Them in the @$$ — Part 1

Dan Kapanke, R — La Crosse, caught on what seems to have been a secret record­ing“We’ve got tons of gov­ern­ment work­ers in my dis­trict — tons. From La Crosse to Prairie du Chien and to Viro­qua and to Ontario and to Hills­boro, you can go on and on and on. We have to over­come that. We gotta hope that they, kind of, are sleep­ing on July 12th — or when­ever the (elec­tion) date is.”

Yeah, that one’s going to come­back and haunt him.

Words Which Could Come­back to Bite Them in the @$$ — Part 2

DPW Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Chief Graeme Zielin­ski when asked by WISN 12 about hav­ing New York Con­gress­man Anthony Weiner at the annual con­ven­tion on Fri­day — “We’re glad to have him here.”

One does often say that before the cir­cus hits town; until they have to clean up after the ani­mals.  And it sure does appear as if Weiner is going to be bring­ing the cir­cus to town with him.

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At 11:00, We Find Out Just How Crazy JoAnne Kloppenburg Is

This will be fun.

And appar­ently I may be the only one who might hold Tom Foley – the Wis­con­sin Lib­eral Blogosphere’s “Best Legal Mind” with a sus­pended law license (Just fin­ish you CLE work already and pay your dues pal)to task for his pledge he’d join the Wis­con­sin GOP if Klop­pen­burg files a suit.  For the record Tom, most Wis­con­sin or National Repub­li­can Oper­a­tives I know couldn’t care less that you’re gay.  In fact, if this out­ing by a left-wing group was cor­rect, the old Oppo Chief at the RNC (before he was sacked in May 2010 for being a com­plete and utter jerk, or so I’m told) may be gay.

Heck, I don’t care that you’re gay Tom.

Just tend to think you’re a jerk; I’m sure the feel­ing is mutual

The cam­paign for state supreme court chal­lenger JoAnne Klop­pen­burg said she would make an announce­ment at 11:00 a.m. Tues­day on a pos­si­ble legal chal­lenge against the results of the state-wide recount in the race for Supreme Court Justice.

She had until the end of Tues­day to decide whether to take legal action after los­ing the recount to incum­bent Jus­tice David Prosser.

Klop­pen­burg asked for a statewide recount after pre­lim­i­nary fig­ures had her los­ing to Prosser.

Brian Nemoir, cam­paign man­ager for Prosser, says the recount has been an exhaus­tive process and it’s time to move on.

If they do file a suit we will fight that suit with all vigor.  It’s unnecessary.”

The recount results were cer­ti­fied last week show­ing Jus­tice Prosser beat­ing chal­lenger JoAnne Klop­pen­burg by about 7,000 votes.

Sources to 620 WTMJ radio talk show host say Klop­pen­burg will indeed con­cede the race.  We’ll know at the top of the hour if they are correct.

No doubt Foley’s sigh­ing in relief and hop­ing that Sykes got it right; no doubt the first time in Foley’s mind.

UPDATE II: Politico is report­ing their own sources are con­firm­ing the Sykes report.

UPDATE III: Open blog, insert foot.

As Tom has pointed out, I appear to have libeled him. Most likely on the gay com­ment, and for that I sin­cerely apol­o­gize for.  Maybe over the past cou­ple of years of skim­ming over Tom’s posts on gay mar­riage and his crit­i­cisms of con­ser­v­a­tive Chris­tians on homo­sex­ual issues, I mis­took his pas­sion on them as a piss-poor assump­tion that he was gay himself.

I hon­estly meant no harm or mal­ice from it.

My mis­take, and I apol­o­gize for it, as this quote from one of Foley’s own posts, which was passed on to me shows — I am really frickin’ wrong.

I don’t get the obses­sion with homo­sex­u­als, which seems to be a fea­ture of both fun­da­men­tal­ist style Chris­tian­ity and polit­i­cal con­ser­vatism. Per­son­ally I don’t think about gay peo­ple too often. Chris­t­ian con­ser­v­a­tives will often tell you they aren’t so much con­cerned with gay peo­ple per se, but rather their focus is on “homo­sex­ual acts.”

Maybe that’s why I’m not a con­ser­v­a­tive Chris­t­ian because, trust me, homo­sex­ual acts are about the last things I care to focus on.* It makes lit­tle sense to me why self-proclaimed anti-homosexuals would want to focus on homo­sex­ual acts because the only peo­ple who should be focus­ing on homo­sex­ual acts are, well, homosexuals.

So again, Tom, my sin­cer­est apol­o­gizes.  I AM AN ASS.

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Scray Drops Out

This is a smart move polit­i­cally. It now leaves a pretty much clear path for Rep. John Nygren (R-Marinette) to take on Dave Hansen (D — Green Bay).

Mary Scray, vice chair­woman of the Brown County Board, said Thurs­day that she won’t run for the 30th State Sen­ate Dis­trict seat cur­rently held by Dave Hansen.

Scray announced ear­lier this year that she would run for the seat as a Repub­li­can in a recall elec­tion or in 2012 but said today that her respon­si­bil­i­ties to her fam­ily, pro­fes­sion and the County Board forced her to reluc­tantly withdraw.

She also said that in the inter­est of Repub­li­can Party unity, she sup­ports John Nygren, who has also announced plans to oppose Hansen, D-Green Bay.

Scray, who rep­re­sents Dis­trict 23 in Howard, is also chair­woman of the county’s Exec­u­tive Committee.

Then this does raise the ques­tion as to why David Van­der Leest, the orga­nizer of the Hansen Recalls in the greater Green Bay area, is now also run­ning in the Hansen RecallHe has even just launched a cam­paign website.

In other related news to this recall, Hansen has begun his air war and his run­ning tons of TV in the Green Bay mar­ket.  Take that for what you will.

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Wednesday Quick Hits


I think I said it best last night when I told my friend and for­mer eCam­paign Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Direc­tor at the RNC dur­ing the 2008 cycle, Liz Mair, that I’d rather slit my own throat than work a New York State Spe­cial election.

She agreed.

The New York State GOP is run by idiots, there’s no pri­mary, and they never pick (Yes, they lit­er­ally pick the can­di­dates) a con­sen­sus can­di­date which cre­ates more 3rd party can­di­dates who can jump on the bal­lot if they have the means to do so, plus the lack of the tra­di­tional “Come to Jesus” moment after the pri­mary isn’t around to build party cohesion.

As for takes, I think both Dave Weigel and Jim Ger­aghty have solid takes.

There’s no doubt Medicare — or rather MediS­care — had an effect on the race as well, but I don’t blame Paul Ryan for this loss.  Paul and his staff on the Bud­get Com­mit­tee are doing the yeoman’s work on explain­ing their plan and videos like this are a godsend.

How much of a god­send?  Well, both my par­ents are on Medicare, both are near or over 70, one of which is set to cel­e­brate his 5th Anniver­sary of a heart trans­plant which was paid for by Medicare.  If there are any peo­ple who would have rea­son to worry about the Ryan Plan, it’d be them.  More or less, they’re not, in large part of Ryan’s videos which I’ve played for, or sent to them via email.

Finally, I real­ize there’s a sud­den push by lib­er­als for Ryan to jump in the 2012 race after last night; espe­cially in the Kos Crowd to use the issue fully and help the Obama re-elect.

How soon they forget…



“Fehr” WEAC

Not sure I’ve ever seen a move like this in the realm of pub­lic edu­ca­tion unions.  Mem­bers of union agrees to go one way only to see its local turn down what’s been agreed upon to ben­e­fit the “Mother Union” and one of its sacred cows — in this case, WEA Trust.

In fact, the only exam­ple I can find that’s even close to it is the failed 2003 trade by the Texas Rangers of Alex Rodriguez to the Boston Red Sex.  A-Rod had agreed on paper to the trade to Boston, and in order to avoid fur­ther hits to Boston’s  team salary, had agreed to rene­go­ti­ate his mam­moth salary to a lower amount.

Instead, the Major League Base­ball Play­ers Asso­ci­a­tion, then under the lead­er­ship of Don Fehr, vetoed the trade between the two teams if A-Rod took a penny less than his orig­i­nally nego­ti­ated con­tract.  As a result, the trade between Texas and Boston imploded.  The only team able to pay it, and will­ing to take Rodriguez and his salary away from the Texas Rangers — The New York Yankees.

Faced with the pos­si­bil­ity that the Alex Rodriguez trade will not take place because the Major League Play­ers Asso­ci­a­tion rejected the restruc­tur­ing of Rodriguez’s land­mark con­tract by the Red Sox, Major League Baseball’s top labor lawyer said last night that com­mis­sioner Bud Selig may legally chal­lenge the union’s right to do so.

If Selig approves the rework­ing of the con­tract of sports’ highest-paid player over the objec­tions expressed by union lawyer Gene Orza, the mat­ter could wind up before an inde­pen­dent arbi­tra­tor, a legal process that could take weeks and cause chaos for the teams and play­ers involved.

The basic agree­ment con­tains a rule that requires any spe­cial covenant to be an actual or poten­tial ben­e­fit to the player,” Rob Man­fred, exec­u­tive vice pres­i­dent of labor rela­tions & human resources for MLB told the Asso­ci­ated Press. “In a sit­u­a­tion like the cur­rent sit­u­a­tion, where there was a restruc­tur­ing, where the player was get­ting some­thing and the club was get­ting some­thing, Gene Orza is not the final arbi­tra­tor on whether the restruc­tur­ing pro­vides an actual or poten­tial ben­e­fit to the player. The com­mis­sioner cur­rently is con­sid­er­ing his legal options in con­sul­ta­tion with the two teams.”

As a result, A-Rod’s now a Yan­kee until , still with his bloated salary, and the­o­ries a plenty have sprung up that this was the needed cat­a­lyst to break the “Curse of the Bam­bino” since the Red Sox finally won their first World Series since 1918 a sea­son or two later.

(And yes, I am very much aware the owner who agreed to the ini­tial con­tract demands of A-Rod’s agent Scott Boras — who’s also Prince Fielder’s so kiss him good­bye fel­low Brew­ers fans — was George W. Bush.)

This Didn’t Need to Happen

Two teens in Kim­berly are charged with leav­ing their new­born infant behind a dump­ster after the father report­edly panic instead of leav­ing the infant at St. Elizabeth’s Hos­pi­tal in Apple­ton.  The child was found two hours later, and is now liv­ing with child pro­tec­tive ser­vices and said to be in good health.

Wis­con­sin has a law, which allows for those like this young cou­ple to drop off the child they didn’t feel they could raise on their own at a hos­pi­tal, a church, or other pub­lic place and avoid any legal reper­cus­sions.  If the pair hadn’t pan­icked, who­ever received the child would have under­stood and not said any­thing about it.

Instead, these teens now face a pos­si­ble sen­tence six to ten years for an aban­don­ment charge.

The “Oprah” is No More

Sorry, I got noth­ing here.  Was never a fan.


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Holperin Signs On as Sponsor of “Constitutional Carry”


State Sen­a­tor Jim Holperin (D-Eagle River) said today he will sup­port the least restric­tive or “con­sti­tu­tional carry” ver­sion of leg­is­la­tion which would allow Wis­con­sin cit­i­zens to carry a con­cealed hand­gun with­out train­ing or a permit.

I favor the ‘con­sti­tu­tional carry’ or ‘shall issue’ ver­sion of con­cealed carry, but I’ve co-sponsored all three of the hand­gun bills that have been offered this ses­sion because this issue needs to advance and finally get signed into law,” he said.

Holperin said the ‘con­sti­tu­tional carry’ leg­is­la­tion, Sen­ate Bill 93, was mak­ing good progress after receiv­ing strong sup­port in pub­lic hear­ings. “SB 93 will be mod­i­fied to include an optional per­mit for use in other states, but will still allow hand­gun own­ers to carry con­cealed with­out a per­mit or other reg­u­la­tion if they choose,” he said.

Another bill, Sen­ate Bill 90, cre­ates a licens­ing sys­tem for those who want to carry con­cealed and is sim­i­lar to mea­sures intro­duced in past ses­sions. “SB 90 has become a fall­back posi­tion this ses­sion, and will likely not be advanced,” Holperin said.

A third mea­sure, still in draft­ing, would allow con­cealed carry after gun own­ers com­plete a short two hour train­ing session.

I’ve always believed that respon­si­ble and qual­i­fied cit­i­zens deserve the right to carry and use firearms as guar­an­teed by both our state and fed­eral con­sti­tu­tions with the fewest pos­si­ble restric­tions, and my vot­ing record reflects that,” Holperin added.

I’m look­ing for­ward to vot­ing for the con­sti­tu­tional carry leg­is­la­tion with an optional per­mit for those who might want one, and I’m hope­ful the bill can be on the Governor’s desk before the end of June,” he concluded.

Yes, lib­er­als of Wis­con­sin and their blog­ging brethren, a Demo­c­rat –ARGUABLY THE MOST VULNERABLE IN HIS RECALL ELECTION — is to the right of Char­lie Sykes, the state’s top “Gun-Blogger” Owen Robin­son, and most of the con­ser­v­a­tive blog­gers [For the record, I just want the old Zien bill re-introduced.  Mis­sion Accom­plished accord­ing to my con­tacts at the NRA.] in the state when it comes to this ver­sion of con­cealed carry.

(Par­don me while I wait for everyone’s head to stop exploding.)

What does this mean?  Well, for starters, I think this largely con­firms the the­ory I’ve been throw­ing around in my head and with a few friends that the con­cealed carry debate this leg­isla­tive ses­sion has been hijacked by fac­tions “Up North” who frankly know they both have the num­bers to get it through, and don’t care what the more urban, pop­u­lace parts of the state think about it.  The lead authors; one is from out­side Wausau, the other is from Crivitz, are both from north­ern Wisconsin.

Which leads us to Holperin.  It’s no secret that part of the Demo­c­ra­tic play­book is to try to make Holperin’s Repub­li­can chal­lenger, Kim Simec, into some sort of right-wing kook.  Cen­tral to this, is appar­ently some of her children’s books — one of which is on guns and the con­sti­tu­tional right to keep and bear arms.

If Holperin’s all of a sud­den joined “the land of the crazy peo­ple” (I’m para­phras­ing any num­ber of Bill Christof­fer­son posts on the con­cealed carry leg­is­la­tion for the past six or seven years) it does make one begin to won­der why, and if his polling num­bers are show­ing some­thing we haven’t been notic­ing.  Maybe even lib­er­als are miss­ing some­thing here with their focus on the GOP recalls and believ­ing the ones on Kapanke and Hop­per are already ‘in the bank and earn­ing interest.’

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And the Supreme Court Recount is Done

7,004 votes.

That’s the final tally of the vic­tory of David Prosser to his re-election to the Wis­con­sin State Supreme Court.

Now…the expec­tant wait until next Tues­day morn­ing to see if JoAnne Klop­pen­burg is crazy enough to file a legal chal­lenge which will go no where.  Is it any won­der the statewide left has been ignor­ing this recount for the bet­ter part of the last month?

She’s lost.


(Where’s my “Sore Loser­man” jpeg when I need it?)

Wis­con­sin Supreme Court Jus­tice David Prosser’s vic­tory over chal­lenger JoAnne Klop­pen­burg has been cer­ti­fied by the state board that over­sees elections.

The Gov­ern­ment Account­abil­ity Board on Mon­day cer­ti­fied results of a statewide recount that showed the incum­bent Prosser defeated Klop­pen­burg by 7,004 votes. The elec­tion was widely seen as a ref­er­en­dum on Gov. Scott Walker’s pro­posal tak­ing away nearly all col­lec­tive bar­gain­ing rights from most state workers.

Con­ser­v­a­tive Walker back­ers largely backed Prosser while oppo­nents of the col­lec­tive bar­gain­ing bill lined up behind Klop­pen­burg in the offi­cially non­par­ti­san race.

Klop­pen­burg now has until May 31 to chal­lenge the results in court. Her cam­paign has not said whether it will file a chal­lenge or not.

Prosser’s cam­paign says there is no basis for a chal­lenge and it’s time to move on.

Nor­mally, Klop­pen­burg has 5 busi­ness days to decide on a legal chal­lenge after the final cer­ti­fi­ca­tion.  They have a bit of a longer win­dow because of the upcom­ing Memo­r­ial Day week­end; hence the May 31st deadline.

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