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Walker Turns Wisconsin Into Job Loss Leader

Wisconsin AFL-CIO photo

So much for Gov. Scott Walker’s (R) stewardship of the Wisconsin economy and his promise that eliminating collective bargaining rights for public employees and massive budget cuts would turn the Badger State into a job growth miracle. A report today from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) shows that Wisconsin is the only state in the nation to suffer “statistically significant” job loss during the 12 months from March 2011 to March 2012.

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99% Spring Showers on 2 Midwest Governors

99% Spring Showers on 2 Midwest Governors

While 99% Spring protesters are shining some sunlight on anti-worker governors in the Midwest, it may feel more like a downpour to extreme politicians like Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels. Here's a look at recent events.

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Walker Repeals Wis. Equal Pay Protection

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, who is facing a recall election, quietly repealed a state law making it easier for pay discrimination victims to seek justice. Amanda Terkel reports in The Huffington Post that Walker signed into law a bill passed in party-line votes by Republicans in the state legislature that rolls back the 2009 Equal Pay Enforcement Act. The act had allowed workers to challenge pay discrimination in state rather than just federal courts.

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Judge Rules Against Portions of Walker’s Anti-Worker Law

This afternoon a federal judge in Wisconsin struck down two parts of Gov. Scott Walker’s 2011 anti-worker law that eliminated collective bargaining rights for public workers.

U.S. District Court Judge William Conley ruled against the provision that eliminated payroll deduction for public-sector workers' union dues. He also ruled against the section that required unions to win 51 percent support of all employees in units they are certified to represent during annual recertification votes, instead of the majority of employees who voted. Under the requirement of Walker's law, all those who did not vote were to be counted as "no" votes. 

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Public-Sector Job Cuts: It’s a Red-State Thing

Just over a year ago, the 2010 midterm elections saw Republicans seize control of both branches of the legislatures in 11 states. Then, while talking up the notion of job creation, they set about cutting their state and local public workforces with a ferocity unseen in decades.  The most recent numbers, according to the Roosevelt Institute, are stark.

The 11 states are Alabama, Indiana, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. Together, they eliminated 87,900 state and local public jobs—more than 40 percent of the total cut.

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Wis. State Senator Resigns, Taking Republican Majority with Her

Wisconsin state Sen. Pam Galloway resigned today, ending, at least temporarily, the narrow majority held by Republicans there. Facing a recall election, Galloway cited family health issues as her reason for leaving the state legislature that has been the front lines in state Republican attacks on workers' collective bargaining rights. Her departure leaves the state Senate with 16 Democrats and 16 Republicans, with three of the remaining Republicans also facing recall elections. Galloway's recall will go forward, but Republicans will have to find a replacement candidate. If primaries are needed in recall elections for the senators—and for Gov. Scott Walker—they will be held May 8, with the general election June 5.

Read more coverage here and here.

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Wisconsin Recall Election Dates Set

Wisconsin Recall Election Dates Set

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R), his lieutenant governor and four Republican state senators will face voters in recall elections this spring under an agreement approved today by a Dane County judge.

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Another Judge Whacks Wisconsin Photo ID Law

A county judge in Wisconsin ruled today that the law backed by Gov. Scott Walker requiring voters to show photo ID is unconstitutional.

The Wall Street Journal reports that Dane County Circuit Judge Richard Niess blocked the law, saying it would unconstitutionally disenfranchise citizens who do not have photo IDs. Addressing claims that the photo ID law would prevent voter fraud, Niess wrote, "fraud is no more poisonous to our democracy than voter suppression."

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Reclaim Wisconsin Movement Marches on Madison

Reclaim Wisconsin Movement Marches on Madison

Tens of thousands of community members, working families, retirees, veterans, students and other supporters of workers’ rights stood together on a beautiful, sunny Saturday in Madison to reclaim Wisconsin. After enduring a year of Gov. Scott Walker’s disastrous agenda—tax cuts for corporations and the richest 1 percent, at the expense of public services and the dismantling of collective bargaining rights—Wisconsinites are more united than ever in their fight to recall the governor and repair all the damage his policies have done to the state.

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Wisconsinites Speak Out Against Walker’s Agenda on Reclaim Wisconsin Tour

This is a cross-post by Karen Hickey, communications director at the Wisconsin State AFL-CIO.

The Reclaim Wisconsin Tour has been criss-crossing the state giving citizens a chance to speak out on the local impact of Gov. Scott Walker’s disastrous agenda. Teachers, students, jobless workers, community members in La Crosse, Wausau and Eau Claire are coming together to discuss the local impact of Gov. Walker’s policies.

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