MADISON, Wis. — Gov. Scott Walker’s efforts to use the government to take away the rights of workers across Wisconsin has generated more than 5,000 petition signers in less than one day from all corners of Wisconsin to demand state legislators reject Walker’s undemocratic plan.
“Gov. Walker put his own selfish political interests ahead of Wisconsin law and is deploying the military to enforce this undemocratic scheme,” said Scot Ross, One Wisconsin Now Executive Director. “This is the darkest day democracy has faced in Wisconsin.”
In attempting to muscle through his misguided budget plan, Gov. Walker refused to even meet with public employees, something Republican and Democratic governors have done in good faith for the past half century. Public employees previously offered $100 million in concessions and Walker responded by refusing to even meet with them.
“This latest scheme isn’t about job creation,” said Ross. “Governor Walker is attacking working families and systematically destroying Wisconsin’s tradition of reasonable negotiations between workers and employers.”
Gov. Walker’s plan will directly harm the quality of Wisconsin’s schools and children’s educations by taking away the voice of classroom teachers on issues of class size, curriculum and school quality.
Despite claims of financial crisis, Gov. Walker has passed over $140 million in new spending in the past month, for a series of proposals that will not create new jobs in the state of Wisconsin.
“No Wisconsin Governor has deployed the military against public employees as far back as the 1930s, showing just how radical the steps are that Gov. Walker is taking to consolidate his power,” said Ross. “It is a sober reminder the last time the National Guard was deployed against public employees in the United States was in Memphis in 1968, just prior to the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.”
One Wisconsin Now has been unable to find any evidence that during his two-year campaign for governor Walker said he would end collective bargaining rights for working families, leaving many to conclude he is creating a false crisis to punish middle class workers and silence their voices to tighten his grip on power.