Wisconsin Democratic state Rep. Joe Parisi, in red, cheers on a crowd of protesters Friday at the Capitol building in Madison.
Wisconsin Democratic lawmakers fled their state to avoid voting on a controversial anti-union bill that would boost public workers’ pension and medical contributions and deny them the right to collectively bargain. In Madison, meantime, thousands of protesters milled around the state Capitol building Friday in a fourth day of demonstrations.
For more live updates on events in Wisconsin, visit the Defend Wisconsin Twitter feed. —JCL
Republicans were hoping Friday that state troopers would be able to send a message to Democrats boycotting a vote on a bill that would end a half-century of collective bargaining rights for most public workers in this state.
State Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald said he asked Gov. Scott Walker, a fellow Republican, to send two state troopers to the home of Mark Miller, the top state Senate Democrat, and other holdouts. He said he believes the troopers were en route.
The Wisconsin Constitution prohibits police from arresting legislators while they’re in session. Fitzgerald said he just wants to send a message that the 14 Democrats must come back to the Capitol in Madison.