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Saturday, May 12, 2012

Stories to Watch: 5/12/12

Heading out to do some recall work today. Not sure how long it will take, but I'm writing off the rest of the day. And, coincidentally, the first item in today's post is recall related. Now here's the news...

This one's kind of stupid; after video was discovered showing Gov. Walker discussing his "divide and conquer" strategy as a "first step" to building a "completely red state" with a billionaire donor who wants restrictive laws for private-sector unions, Wisconsin State Journal runs an article about how the state GOP has absolutely no plans to make Wisconsin a "right to work" state.

But here's the thing; that video was shot before Walker introduced his union-buster, before all the protests and the occupation of the capital, and -- mostly importantly -- before Republicans lost control of the senate through attrition and a series of recalls. Of course they have no plans to push for more union-busting legislation -- now. It'd be doomed from the get-go. The question is, was that the plan then, before everything blew apart? If dividing and conquering with an attack on collective bargaining was the "first step," what was supposed to be the next?

WSJ's piece answers none of those questions -- and mostly because it never even asks them. At least they let Tom Barrett have the last word. Otherwise, I'm not extremely impressed with this reporting.


Over at The Capital Times, the editorial board has other questions that need to be answered, but haven't even been raised:
1. Why [Walker] told a campaign donor about his plan to attack unions before he told his own Cabinet and the people of Wisconsin.

2. Why he discussed breaking unions as part of a strategy to make Wisconsin a "red (Republican) state."

3. What ongoing conversations he has had with Hendricks.

4. What he has done in return for her unprecedented campaign donations.

And there is one more question.

Gov. Walker's campaign shifted $60,000 from his campaign fund to the governor's criminal defense fund. The donor whose money was shifted to the criminal defense fund had to approve that transfer of money.

Only a handful of Walker contributors gave a sufficient amount of money to fund a $60,000 transfer.

Was Diane Hendricks the donor who authorized that transfer of money? And did the governor discuss his legal problems with her?
Probably not questions Team Walker would be comfortable answering.


Opposing marriage equality is becoming a political loser faster than Republicans may realize.

Mittens flip-flops again. His support of same-sex adoption had a shelf-life of one day.

Rand Paul is not a Libertarian.

Paul Krugman asks excellent questions: will JPMorgan's fiasco be investigated by Republicans to the same degree as Solyndra? And if not, why? I think we all know the answers to both.

Finally, the GOP wants to move beyond all this culture war stuff against women and gays and Girls Scouts and what-have-you and get to work on jobs. The White House couldn't agree more -- so expect the GOP's talk to turn out to be empty rhetoric.
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