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Monday
Mar282011

Ignoring Court Order, Wisconsin Governor Publishes Union-Busting Law

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(MADISON, Wis.) -- There's debate in Wisconsin about whether a law championed by Gov. Scott Walker to strip state and locals workers of most of their collective bargaining rights took effect Saturday.

Attempting to work around a court restraining order, Walker had the Legislative Reference Bureau publish the law online.  The governor contends it's now the law of Wisconsin because of its publication and that his "administration will carry out the law as required."

Union workers and Democrats aren't buying it and, as a result, there could be additional legal action ahead.  On March 18, a judge issued an injunction after hearing from the law's opponents that Republicans possibly violated Wisconsin's open meetings law when GOP state senators passed the union-busting statute.

Technically, the measure can't become law until it's signed by the secretary of state and published in the newspaper of record, the Wisconsin State Journal.  Neither has happened.

Walker may have overreached, since nothing in Wisconsin law about what makes a state law mentions anything about the Legislative Reference Bureau.  As of now, the Wisconsin Supreme Court hasn't talked about intervening in the matter.

The issue remains a hot potato in Wisconsin.  Republicans say the law is needed to bring down massive deficits, while Democrats say its true intention is to weaken union support for their party.

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