First, here is the story from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:
Collective bargaining law published despite restraining order
In a stunning twist, Gov. Scott Walker‘s legislation limiting collective bargaining for public workers was published Friday despite a judge’s hold on the measure, prompting a dispute over whether it takes effect Saturday.
The measure was published to the Legislature’s website with a footnote that acknowledges the restraining order by a Dane County judge. But the posting says state law “requires the Legislative Reference Bureau to publish every act within 10 working days after its date of enactment.”
The measure sparked protests at the Capitol and lawsuits by opponents because it would eliminate the ability of most public workers to bargain over anything but wages.
Laws normally take effect a day after they are published, and a top GOP lawmaker said that meant it will become law Saturday. But nonpartisan legislative officials from two agencies, including the one who published the bill, disagreed.
“I think this is a ministerial act that forwards it to the secretary of state,” said Stephen Miller, director of the Legislative Reference Bureau. “I don’t think this act makes it become effective. My understanding is that the secretary of state has to publish it in the (official state) newspaper for it to become effective.”
Walker signed the bill March 11. Under state law, it must be published within 10 working days, which was Friday.
It hasn’t been printed in the Wisconsin State Journal, the official state newspaper, as other laws are. Late Friday, State Journal publisher Bill Johnston said in an e-mail that the notice for the law had been scheduled to run but had been canceled. He did not elaborate.
La Follette urged caution Friday, saying the measure has not been published yet by his office. He said he believes the law cannot go into effect until he directs the State Journal to publish it, which he has not done.
Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R-Juneau) said it didn’t matter that it hasn’t appeared in the paper.
“It’s published,” Fitzgerald said. “It’s law. That’s what I contend.”
OK, Got it? Walker and Fitzgerald have decided that state law is meaningless when it applies to what they want to do and they are moving ahead, despite the court order and the lack of official publication by La Follette in the official state newspaper.
It would seem that Walker and Fitzgerald… and the state Republican legislators that back them… do not require the law or the judicial branch or even the wishes of the citizens of their state to carry out whatever they want to. If anything laid the basis for revolution, this is it.
- WI Republicans Publish Collective Bargaining Bill Despite Restraining Order (crooksandliars.com)
- Union law published despite restraining order – Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (news.google.com)
- Wisconsin GOP to ignore judicial restraining order and act as though budget repair bill is law (dailykos.com)
- Wis. union law published despite court order (msnbc.msn.com)
- Court Restraining Order Ignored: Wisconsin Anti-Collective Bargaining Bill Published Anyway (themoderatevoice.com)
- Now It Is Time For The Judiciary In Wisconsin To Make A Point (angrydd.wordpress.com)
- Oh my: Wisconsin collective bargaining law officially published – despite judge’s TRO (hotair.com)