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First Wisconsin, Now Ohio

All that talk about Wisconsin being a potential test case for the rest of the country might be right, as now Ohio’s Senate is preparing for a vote this week that could end collective bargaining for public-sector workers in the name of — you guessed it — austerity. –KA

The New York Times:

“This is going to get passed and people will sit back and say, ‘What happened?’ ” said Mark Horton, a retired firefighter who is treasurer of the Ohio Association of Professional Firefighters. “Once it’s done, there’s no putting the genie back in the bottle.”

Unlike similar legislation in Wisconsin, which exempts police officers and firefighters, the Ohio bill includes them, making the measure particularly contentious. The bill is expected to be taken up by the Ohio Senate as soon as Thursday.

But Republicans say legislation that seeks to eliminate long-held union prerogatives are part of broader austerity measures intended to reduce crippling budget deficits, of which public employee pensions have played a growing role.

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