Now that the dust has settled from the senatorial recalls in Wisconsin, the official signature-gathering effort to recall Governor Walker himself starts on November 15th. Some predict that the overturning of the union-busting bill in Ohio
(one even more harsh than the one in Wisconsin, as it included firefighters and police officers) will help set up some momentum for the recall election.
I really hope so, since frankly, things are only getting more messed up around here lately. (Thanks to Oniya for pointing the video out to me.)Gov. Scott Walker gets checked, Mic Checked!
Walker is almost certainly the subject of a John Doe investigation by the FBI
. Two major supporters of Walker's gubernatorial campaign and Walker spokesman Cullen Werwie have all been granted immunity in exchange for their testimony. A Walker aide who recently left her job to work elsewhere in state government had her home raided by the FBI in September.
A timeline of events
suggests that the investigation is looking back all the way to 2005, when Walker first began accepting illegal contributions for his gubernatorial campaign, though the full extent of the investigation is not yet known.
Republican Dale Schultz was the only senator to break party lines during the vote on Wisconsin's anti-collective bargaining bill -- he voted with the Democrats and therefore saved himself any real risk of a recall. It didn't matter; the Republicans still had the majority and the bill passed.
Now he's broken with party lines again and voted against the redistricting bill that the Republicans are trying to push into law to make future recalls against Republicans more difficult. (Redistricting is required to be finished by November 2012; Republicans wanted it done a year early. Schultz says he wants to continue to represent the people who actually elected him.) But while the Senate recalls didn't give the Democrats the majority, they did
reduce the Republican majority to one vote. Schultz voting against the bill means it doesn't pass. Apparently in retaliation, someone decided to egg his office
at the capitol building.
As of November 1st, concealed carry gun permits are available. This being one of Walker's pet projects, it must somehow create jobs -- he claimed back in October
that he would have a "laser-like focus" on job creation this legislative session -- but I haven't yet figured out how, exactly. The point is, at the first opportunity, Walker dropped the requirement for a four-hour training course
in proper gun handling. If you want to hunt deer, you need a 10-hour training course with that rifle; so maybe people should go after those big bucks with a .45 instead.
You're even allowed to carry a concealed weapon in most areas of the state capitol buildings, the major exception being the State Supreme Court hearing room.
But if you carry in one of those terribly dangerous protest signs, or dare to use a camera, prepare to be arrested.
Earlier this year, during the large protests in the capital over the governor’s anti-union policies, the administration installed metal detectors to make sure no weapons were brought into the building. Republicans complained they often felt unsafe, the Journal-Sentinel said, and state Senator Scott Fitzgerald called the Capitol “a powder keg.”
The demonstrations over the anti-union measures were peaceful. Yet, this week, a dozen people were arrested for holding up signs in the Assembly galleries and videotaping proceedings. It turns out cameras – while permitted to be carried – can’t be used, and signs are not permitted in the galleries. On Tuesday, a resolution was introduced to suspend the rule forbidding signs, but it was defeated along party lines, with one Republican arguing that the turbulence of the protests and death threats received by Republicans required the rules remain in place. The Journal-Sentinel noted that members of both parties received death threats by email and phone.