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Assembly could get budget repair bill tomorrow
Governor Walker will get a vote in the state assembly on his budget repair bill Tuesday. Laura Podgornik reports from Madison that two northern Wisconsin Democrats hope to delay that vote.
Sporting an orange t-shirt that reads “Assembly Democrats fighting for working families”, Representative Janet Bewley of Ashland says it’s exhilarating to see thousands of people united peacefully.
“We want to defeat the bill but short of that, what we might be able to do is limit the damage that the bill can do. It’s a harmful bill. It’s a cruel bill.”
Bewley and other Assembly Democrats met Monday and created several amendments to the bill that they will propose Tuesday on the floor.
“There are many, many aspects to the bill. It’s not just a matter of collective bargaining. There are a lot of things in it about the adjustments of classified positions to non-classified positions, the changes to medical assistance programs. There is so many ways to look at this. There could be in the tens, if not a hundred amendments.”
Bewley says she has had several people stop into her office since protests began last week. She says her office has also received over 1000 emails, most of them are against the Governor’s Budget Repair bill.
Democratic Representative Nick Milroy of Superior says he’s not ready to vote on the bill.
“We were given a 144-page bill to look over in a matter of a couple days. They wanted to vote on it last week and we effectively stalled it. And we’re going to do everything we can this week to stall it too. We haven’t had time to hear from the public. We’re still taking public testimony. There are a lot of concerns about this bill. As you can see, hundreds and thousands of people have traveled to Madison voice their opposition to this bill.”
Milroy says he has received around 2000 emails about the bill. He says dozens of northern Wisconsin residents have also stopped by to support what protestors call “killing the bill.”
“It’s a wonderful display of democracy. It’s about time the public woke up to a lot of what the extreme right wing is pushing on America. They want to destroy the quality of life for the average citizen just to pad the pockets of their wealthy donors.”
Some Superior Days participants are making their way over to the protests. Milroy is excited for northerners to see the protests first hand.
“There are several hundred constituents from northern Wisconsin down here this week. It’s going to be a once in a lifetime opportunity for them.”
Milroy says Democrats will spend several hours coming up with a strategy to stall the vote and allow more time for concerns to be heard.
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