After weeks of rangling and protests, Gov. Scott Walker and Wisconsin Republican passed the legislation to virtually end collective bargaining in the state. Halted by the quorum need to pass fiscally related bills in the Wisconsin Senate, Republicans split off the legislative language regarding collective bargaining into a stand alone bill, which did not need a quorum. The Wisconsin Senate passed the bill this evening.
Democrats are outraged by the ‘nondemocratic’ nature of such a maneuver. This is dripping with irony. It was only one year ago Republicans said the same thing when Democrats in the U.S. Senate used reconciliation to pass Obamacare. At the time, I said liberals would rue the day that they opened the door to such a legislative gambit…that day is today.
Walker can call this a victory, but politically it cost him. He has a long time to make amends, and largely his future will be determined by economic fortunes. Most everyone will have forgotten this by the time 2014 rolls around. How this affects Presidential politics for 2012 is another question, and should be fascinating.