A UW Madison student and teacher assistant walk out is planned today for 9:15AM behind Lincoln’s statue on Bascom, with 10:30AM rally in Library Mall, and an 11AM Capitol Square rally to follow. Rumors circulate that Wisconsin’s Senate will rush to get in the Capitol early and begin their vote on a radical “Budget Repair Bill” before an onslaught of humanity covers Madison’s city square for the fourth day in a row and fills its Capitol building with raucous chanting and drumming. Note: UW Madison has approximately 50,000 students.
Alerts circulated on twitter and facebook last night and this morning urging workers and students to rush to the Capitol building by 8AM today to be there as the Senators do their work.
Wisconsin’s Senate will vote on a bill that would radically curtail the power of public employees in Wisconsin, separate the University of Wisconsin at Madison from the state system, slash financing of public education at the K-12 level, and give greater control of Wisconsin’s Medicaid program to the Governor. The bill was released Friday 11, got a public hearing Tuesday February 15, came under committee vote last night, and faces a Senate vote today February 17.
An amendment to the 175 page bill was passed by a party line vote, 12 – 4 last night. The amendment does nothing to alter the core of the bill which has drawn workmen, teachers, nurses, clerks, students, and Progressives from the entire state to swarm Madison and Wisconsin sites in teaming numbers : in Madison alone- 1,.500 Monday ; 10,000 Tuesday, 15,000-20,000 Wednesday – and I will estimate, 50,000 today. Madison rallies get much of the focus in the conversation about protest to this bill, with little focus given to Eau Claire, Horicon, Green Bay, Menomonee Falls, Wauwatosa, Appleton, Menomonie, and a host of other cities where protests gathered or were organized within 48 hours of he bill’s release.
At last night’s Joint Finance Committee meeting, Democrat Representative Schilling declared the amendment “Lipstick on a pig.” She quickly corrected herself, saying, “I wouldn’t even call this lipstick on a pig. It’s chapstick on a pig.”
Approximately 250 schools close today due to teacher sick-in’s in over 26 districts in Wisconsin to include Milwaukee and Madison. This is the 2nd day of a complete district sick-in for Madison
Scott Walker reaffirms that he will call in the National Guard however and wherever need be. On Fox News he dismissed the numbers of protesters since they are mere thousands while there are 5.5 million people in our state.
Regarding the UW Student Walk Out: This is an action approved by the Associated Students of Madison as well as United Council. ASM is a student governing body, and United Council is a body governing students in the entire state system.
“If your philosophy of student council does not include protecting this university and our students, then I question why you are here,” Ostenson said. “This [walkout] directly affects our future at this university. I believe that this body needs to start doing something, just like I’ve been hearing.” More at Badger Herald.
For More Information:
dane101 has an excellent set of articles.
Wisconsin Senate to Vote on Anti-Union Bill, New York Times