Despite the best efforts of the Democratic National Committee, the unions and their allies in the mainstream media, Americans are siding with Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker and the Wisconsin Republicans in their effort to put that state’s fiscal house in order.
A poll released by Rasmussen Monday shows that 48 percent of likely voters side with Governor Walker, while 38 percent agree with the unions. 14 percent were undecided.
In an effort to close the state’s sizable budget deficit, Walker is proposing to eliminate collective bargaining for public employees including teachers on everything but wage issues. He is excluding public safety workers such as policemen and firemen from his plan.
Thirty-eight percent (38%) of voters think teachers, firemen and policemen should be allowed to go on strike, but 49% disagree and believe they should not have that right. Thirteen percent (13%) are not sure.
1,000 likely voters participated in the poll conducted between Feb 18 – 19.
According to Rasmussen, the results were largely partisan.
Last week, Ben Smith reported from Politico that a poll shows 64 percent do not believe public sector employees should be represented by a union.
Even some in the labor movement are seeing the events in Wisconsin as a “moment of truth”, as reported by Ben Smith and Maggie Haberman of Politico:
Yet that sense of determined harmony comes at a potentially steep cost, and with no clear endgame. Some strategists and labor officials watching the protest conflagration from the outside are beginning to fret that a large-scale defeat in Wisconsin will have a devastating ripple effect, weakening labor state by state throughout the rest of the country.
“Some of the labor people are saying, ‘It’s the beginning of the fight back,’” said a top labor official. “But if the labor movement rallies and gets run over in Wisconsin, it opens [the gates] in every state” for governors to start pushing harder to curtail labor rights.
Part of the reason for the pushback by the public is the tenor of the protests.
Many carried signs portraying Gov. Walker as Hitler – a move now condemned by Wisconsin Democratic Party Chairman Mike Tate. CNS News reports:
Democratic Party of Wisconsin Chairman Mike Tate is condemning signs carried by pro-labor protesters that compare Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker to Hitler, Benito Mussolini and Hosni Mubarak and showed the governor with a cross-hairs rifle sight over his face.
In an interview with CNSNews.com, Democratic Party of Wisconsin Press Secretary Graeme Zielinski said that Tate and the party “absolutely” condemn the inflammatory signs but says that they are not representative of the majority of the protesters who have taken to the streets in opposition to the Governor’s plan.
“This is absolutely not representative of what the protest is that’s out there,” said Zielinski. “Frankly it’s offensive to a lot of the protesters, average working men and women who are out here with their families peaceably demonstrating and exercising their first amendment rights.”
A video at The Blaze shows what it calls “International Anarchists, Socialists and Marxists” engaging in what it calls a “substance-fueled rave” at the state Capitol, and another video shows teachers getting notes from “doctors” at the protest.
Others are outraged at the role played by the Obama Administration. Last week, the President called the bill an “assault on unions.” Working with the Democratic National Committee, the President’s campaign arm Organizing for America, has provided support for the protest.
On Monday, Doug Ross wrote the Administration now claims that neither it nor the DNC had any role in the protests – claims Ross calls “outright fabrications.”
In fact Brad Woodhouse, the Democratic Party Communications Director, was spotted crowing about Obama’s involvement as recently as Thursday.
In trying to explain the outrage being felt by teachers, Diane Ravitch of CNN writes:
The uprising in Madison is symptomatic of a simmering rage among the nation’s teachers. They have grown angry and demoralized over the past two years as attacks on their profession escalated.
The issue is not about teachers – teaching is an honorable profession and no one begrudges paying teachers what they are worth. The issue is the ever-increasing demands being placed on strapped governments by public sector unions who care nothing about fiscal responsibility. These unions have to realize that states like Wisconsin are broke, and confiscatory taxes on “the rich” will not fix the problem.
Public sector unions are losing the battle for public opinion, and their antics are not endearing people to their side. Americans are broke, unemployed and struggling to make ends meet. It’s time these union bosses realize this and end the insurrection in Wisconsin.
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