Daily Archives: March 15, 2011

Beware The Ides of March – especially in Wisconsin

John Nichols has written another revealing article on the Wisconsin situation in The Nation. This one is a really frightening one for any free American: proposing legislation to deny State Senators the ability to serve their constituents.

Nichols cites State Senator Fred Risser of Madison in the article:
“Who does Senator Fitzgerald think he is? Just because his brother is the speaker of the Assembly and his best friend is the governor of Wisconsin does not give him the power to decide who can and cannot vote in the State Senate,” said Risser, whose Senate service began before Fitzgerald was born. “His statement that Senate Democrats can no longer vote in committee is the height of arrogance. In my tenure in the legislature, I have never seen any attempt to deny duly elected legislators their right to vote.”

Here’s a clip, but go into The Nation’s site and read it all:

clipped from www.thenation.com
Wisconsin Republicans have now moved to deny Democratic legislators the right to vote on legislation as it is being considered by state Senate committees.
For the better part of a month, fourteen Democratic state senators denied Republicans the quorum they sought to pass Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker’s anti-labor legislation—and, in so doing, provided the time for the development of a mass movement that last Saturday drew more than 100,000 union supporters to the Capitol. The Democratic senators have returned and the legislation has passed.
But Republican poll numbers have collapsed. And they are furious.
 

How furious?

Walker and his legislative consigliere, state Senator Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, have now moved to deny the dissenting Democrats the right to participate in the legislative process.

Sen. Scott Fitzgerald (Walker in the background) of "Fitzwalkerstan"

The majority leader’s over-the-top actions have led one senior legislator, state Representative Mark Pocan, D-Madison, to begin referring to the Wisconsin as a “third world junta” state that he calls “Fitzwalkerstan.”

While that line gets a laugh, the assaults on representative democracy are serious.

blog it

Quote of the Day – on getting out of Afghanistan

America cannot afford an endless war in Afghanistan. After nearly a decade at war, with still no equal commitment from the Karzai government, and after all the lives we’ve sacrificed and the billions we’ve spent on this war, it’s time to start bringing our troops home. It’s time to put the future and security of Afghanistan in the hands of its own leaders, and focus America’s national security on the emerging and more imminent threats from al Qaeda in other regions.”

– Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) on calling for passage of the Safe and Responsible Redeployment of United States Combat Forces from Afghanistan Act

I think we should add some kind of statement that, Al Qaeda or not, we don’t get into another national civil war of any kind.