Bill cutting collective bargaining passes in Wisconsin
Republican Wisconsin Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald speaks to reporters following a session of the State Senate at the Wisconsin State Capitol.
March 9th, 2011
07:47 PM ET

Bill cutting collective bargaining passes in Wisconsin

Wisconsin's Republican-led state Senate passed Gov. Scott Walker's proposed restrictions on collective bargaining for public employees Wednesday, getting around a Democratic walkout by stripping financial provisions from the "Budget Repair" bill.

"Tonight, the Senate will be passing the items in the Budget Repair Bill that we can with the 19 members who actually do show up and do their jobs," Sen. Scott Fitzgerald, the chamber's Republican majority leader, said in a statement announcing the move.

Senators were able to move ahead by voting only on the non-financial aspects of Walker's proposed bill, which requires fewer members for a quorum. But the move drew howls of outrage from outside the chamber, where pro-union demonstrators chanted "Shame, shame," as the bill passed.

Are you there? Share photos and video of the protests, or your views on the issue with the CNN iReport community.

- CNN's Ed Lavandera contributed to this report.

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Filed under: Politics • Wisconsin
soundoff (717 Responses)
  1. Dean Waterman

    Finally. How many days have the Democrats been away? I say they had plenty of time to make their argument, but it's hard to do so when locked away in the tower (the Clock Tower Inn in Rockford, that is).

    March 9, 2011 at 8:02 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Keilwerth LA

    This news and the news from Idaho are making me think that there are sane people left among us.

    March 9, 2011 at 8:02 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Allen

    Big business/Billionaires 1 – Middle class workers 0

    March 9, 2011 at 8:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chris

      These are public employees. The only ones that won are the non public employee tax payers who are tired of getting squeezed for more money every few years.

      March 9, 2011 at 8:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • ArtyD42

      What middle class will exist when this goes into full effect?

      March 9, 2011 at 8:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • Spectre

      Allen missed the PUBLIC WORKERS concept.

      March 9, 2011 at 8:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • Philabias

      you must mean
      we the people 1
      crooked unions 0

      March 9, 2011 at 8:52 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Brian

    Awesome, way to go Governor Walker! I am glad that some of Wisconsin's legislators are doing their jobs.

    March 9, 2011 at 8:03 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Sean

    At least this passed without any Democrats giving the GOP a political figleaf, allowing them the ability to say "this was debated in a full Senate".

    March 9, 2011 at 8:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Spectre

      Yes, fortunately this anti-democratic tactic of running away was eventually marginalized without sanctioning such ridiculous behavior of holding the process hostage. There is hope for democracy yet.

      March 9, 2011 at 8:08 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Philabias

    The only shame is the raping the unions have been giveing the tax payers.
    the unions are worse for america than even obama.

    March 9, 2011 at 8:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • usarnaem

      The best trick Corporate America ever pulled was convincing those in the middle to lower classes that unions are their enemy. I feel sorry for you.

      March 9, 2011 at 8:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • Spectre

      Haha. Usarnaem doesn't understand the difference between public employees and "big buisness/corporate america". How cute.

      March 9, 2011 at 8:21 pm | Report abuse |
  7. by12on

    hooray! unions protect and promote lazy workers. time to put a stop to it

    March 9, 2011 at 8:03 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Pat angry in WI


    March 9, 2011 at 8:03 pm | Report abuse |
  9. nukegm

    further proof that the diaper wearing coward democrats are not needed to get things done.

    March 9, 2011 at 8:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dave

      No, only a lie and people with no soul to cheer-lead for it is required to "get things done" in conservative land.

      March 9, 2011 at 8:05 pm | Report abuse |
  10. David P. Kronmiller

    If Republicans want to win the trust to the electorate, and not just their own party members, than tactics like this will not help and will cause them to lose in 2012. This was dishonest and a slap in the face to hard working Americans. To say that government workers do not have the same rights as private workers to work together to get better wages or improve working conditions is to be against the United States Worker (regardless if they are union or not)

    March 9, 2011 at 8:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • nukegm

      the dems got a taste of their own medicine, like o care passing. or " cronie care " as any call it...

      March 9, 2011 at 8:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • RussUWGB

      President Roosevelt (DEMOCRAT) would have disagreed with you strongly and his reason is a reason why we DONT have unions at the Federal level. His argument is also in line with why we shouldn't allow state unions. My dad is a state worker in VA (right to work) he is not according to him, having his back broken and his credit is excellent. He has good vacation time, sick leave, etc... Stop lying and also bear in mind a completely seperate law thats been in Wisconsin for nearly 100 years.

      March 9, 2011 at 8:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • ModerateMainer

      Russ, what you fail to mention is his benefits and salary benchmarks were collectively negotiated by...... (drum roll please)..... EVIL UNIONS! While technically you are correct about Virginia state workers not falling under this umbrella, but in effect they enjoy the same protections through state laws and policies. Where did those laws and policies come from? Was it from the good of the government's heart? Actually, it was the evil unions. Once again. Sheesh. Maybe they aren't evil. Maybe they have helped to build the middle class in this country and serve as an important check to larger corporate interests. What if I told you that reading a book would really help give you some perspective? Would that blow your mind?

      March 9, 2011 at 8:22 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Mike

    About time! The Republicans should have done this weeks ago.

    March 9, 2011 at 8:03 pm | Report abuse |
  12. jj

    Good job WI! The greedy unions are bankrupting states and businesses, now they're reaping what they've sown. There just isn't any money anymore to pay their outrageous benefits and I am sick of continually being asked to pay more in taxes so they can enjoy their absurdly generous benefits, pay, and job security.

    March 9, 2011 at 8:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • Collin

      You do not seem to know what you are talking about. I live in a state (South Carolina) with no unions and an all Republican government. Workers in this state make below average wages and, have very little, even no, health care coverage. My state's budget is billions of dollars in the hole and massive spending cuts are needed. We are in the same position, without the unions and with no middle class.

      March 9, 2011 at 8:19 pm | Report abuse |
  13. shack

    Well democracy is getting old anyway!

    March 9, 2011 at 8:04 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Matt Valparaiso

    hhh ha ha ha ha!

    March 9, 2011 at 8:04 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Unknown

    Impeach Scott Walker for breaking the rules!

    March 9, 2011 at 8:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • Steve

      Breaking rules? The rules were followed by the legislature to a T. What rock have you been under?

      March 9, 2011 at 8:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • MThom

      Breaking the rules??? How about not showing up to work and getting paid while those of us working foot the bill?? Those leaving the state caused this.

      March 9, 2011 at 8:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • T

      Name one rule that was broken. Oh, you can't, because you're just spouting lies.

      March 9, 2011 at 8:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • Philabias

      Only a fool would talk of empeaching WI #1
      When he was doing exactly what he ran on and won the vote of the people who said yes on the ballet box
      he was doing his job unlike the union sellouts who betrayed wisconsin

      March 9, 2011 at 9:13 pm | Report abuse |
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