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Friday, June 03, 2011

 8:17 PM 

Barca chides Walker and GOP lawmakers for ignoring open, honest government

Assembly Minority Leader Peter Barca thanked delegates for their efforts to pump up the spirits of Dem lawmakers during the battle over the collective bargaining bill. But he said there was one protester that left him chagrined.

Barca said the same guy circled the Capitol every day for two months and hours on end, carrying a sign that made him “chuckle but also bristle.” It read, “Wisconsin, making Chicago look clean and honest for almost four months now.”

“Is that the democracy we want in Wisconsin?” Barca asked, the crowd shouting back its opposition. “No and Governor Walker and Republican legislators, we’re tired of these antics and dirty tricks and now we have a message for you, Governor Walker, you tried to divide us, but we are more united than ever before.”

Barca complained the budget the Joint Finance Committee is still working on is “chockfull” of giveaways” for donors while Republicans “want us to pay the freight.”

In contrast, he praised his fellow Dem lawmakers for a record 62 hours of debate over the collective bargaining bill with a record 600 amendments. He also reminded the delegates that a Dane County judge appointed by former Gov. Tommy Thompson -- who was “not known for appointing activist, liberal judges” -- made it clear “the Legislature is not above the law and neither is Governor Walker.”

Barca said Republicans have given Dems the energy to keep going.

“Isn’t it a shame that we have to constantly remind Republicans that in Wisconsin, we expect clean and open government,” he said.

-- By JR Ross

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