Wisc. Gov. Briefs National Guard About Unrest After Unions Blast Emergency Budget
Jonathon M. Seidl|The Blaze
New Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker admitted he had to brief the state’s National Guard last week about potential unrest after union leaders expressed anger over his emergency budget proposal. That budget would effectively end collective bargaining rights for state workers in an effort to plug a $3.6 billion budget hole.
Walker, a Republican who took office in January, said no one should be surprised by the move he will ask the GOP-controlled Legislature to approve this week given that he’s talked about doing it for two months.
“This is not a shock,” he told the Associated Press last Thursday. “The shock would be if we didn’t go forward with this.”
But union leaders were taken aback at the scope of his proposal. On Sunday, they started running ads opposing the measure:
“This is a shocking development,” said Bryan Kennedy, president of AFT-Wisconsin, which represents 17,000 workers. “It ends collective bargaining for public employees in our state, after 50 years of management and workers solving problems together.”
That led Walker on Friday to admit he briefed the National Guard about potential unrest should state workers take action, a possibility once workers realize the proposal is almost a sure thing.