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Posted at 5:59 PM ET, 02/28/2011

Wisconsin Gov. Walker pushes back against Obama criticism

By Perry Bacon Jr.

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker criticized President Obama on Monday after the president made a reference in a speech to public employees being "denigrated or vilified or their rights are infringed upon."

"I'm sure the President knows that we have repeatedly praised the more than 300,000 government workers who come to work every day in Wisconsin,"Walker spokesman Cullen Werwie said in a statement. "I'm sure that President Obama simply misunderstands the issues in Wisconsin, and isn't acting like the union bosses in saying one thing and doing another."

Walker, the author of a controversial proposal that Obama has criticized that would limit collective bargaining rights for many Wisconsin state employees, did not join most of the nation's governors in Washington for the winter meeting of the National Governors Association. In a speech Monday morning to the group, Obama did not
specifically name Wisconsin or Walker but seemed to make reference to
the provision that Walker has championed.

"I don't think it does anybody any good when public employees are denigrated or vilified or their rights are infringed upon," Obama said. "We need to attract the best and the brightest to public service. These times demand it."

Obama's remark on Monday was his first on controversy since Feb. 17,
when he called Walker's plan "an assault on unions."

By Perry Bacon Jr.  | February 28, 2011; 5:59 PM ET
Categories:  44 The Obama Presidency  
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Comments

The Governor of Wisconsin needs to step back and LISTEN to the state workers. Stubbornly lording over them and jamming his opinion down their throats isn't the answer to anything.

Posted by: deborahjbrown | March 2, 2011 7:09 PM | Report abuse

It's not about support, everyone supports the union employees. This is about getting control over running the state government within their means. No business or government can manage this mess without control over it, and we elected these public officials to be fiscally responsible. With 80% of the state budget going toward pay and benefits, the gov has no choice if he wants to carry out his mandate given to him by the people who elected him. If he fails, he's gone, recall or next election...

Posted by: logic99 | March 2, 2011 4:28 PM | Report abuse

Still waiting for our President to come out against all of the vitriol of the union thugs are spewing against the governor. Oh that's right he's not one of his people. How about the national media on the uncivil actions of the union thugs? That's right it doesn't help their left leaning outlook on life.

Posted by: tateofpa | March 2, 2011 12:38 PM | Report abuse

Too bad for the anti-union people writing in this comment section that many more people support the Wisconsin public unions than not. When people get mad, they get tunnel vision and that is what I see in these anti-union comments. They ignore the FACT that the unions in Wisconsin are willing to negotiate lower wage and compensation to keep the state running. The governor wants to take away collective bargaining entirely and is therefore just union busting. This makes all the anti-union comments here well worth ignoring as those of somebody who would rather take out their fury on their firefighters, their teachers and their garbage collectors than on the wall street tycoons who hide behind their numbers and anonymity.

Posted by: JSmith7 | March 2, 2011 10:03 AM | Report abuse

If WI, like CA is a state that can re-call its Governor, the sooner the better. Respectively

Posted by: GriffonWHO | March 2, 2011 9:34 AM | Report abuse

Am I correct that WI, like CA is a re-call state (as in Governor) ?; if so, it should be done.

Posted by: GriffonWHO | March 2, 2011 9:32 AM | Report abuse

It's been noted before but why should taxpayers support public unions when these union goons use union money to support Democratic politicians and get them elected to support their agenda. Who's supporting the private sector employees? NO TO PUBLIC EMPLOYEE UNIONS.....YOU WORK FOR US, WE THE PEOPLE! Government managers are well able to develop a just compensation package and don't need arm twising by union goons.

Posted by: Jackets | March 2, 2011 9:16 AM | Report abuse

It's been noted before but why should taxpayers support public unions when these union goons use union money to support Democratic politicians and get them elected to support their agenda. Who's supporting the private sector employees? NO TO PUBLIC EMPLOYEE UNIONS.....YOU WORK FOR US, WE THE PEOPLE! Government managers are well able to develop a just compensation package and don't need arm twising by union goons.

Posted by: Jackets | March 2, 2011 9:14 AM | Report abuse

Gov. Walker just wants to kill UNIONS. Even after agreeing to the money demands and Fringe benefit contributions to balance the budget, he still wants his "pound of flesh" by killing union rights. His other agenda is to kill social programs for Seniors. Looks like retirees will have to retire in the sun belt after all.

Posted by: Dijeau | March 1, 2011 9:50 PM | Report abuse

The community organizer needs to go back to playing president and mind the business of the COUNTRY, not Wisconsin.

Posted by: waterfrontproperty | March 1, 2011 8:20 PM | Report abuse

The community organizer needs to go back to playing president and mind the business of the COUNTRY, not Wisconsin.

Posted by: waterfrontproperty | March 1, 2011 8:17 PM | Report abuse

Unions must go, pure and simple. Fire the strikers and hire people who want to work. What so hard about that ? Oh wait, if we did that, the Dems would lose all that money and all those votes. This battle is NOT about bargaining rights, its about holding onto political power, abusing the tax payers and destroying this country. And all you pro union posters, better call the DNC for a more updated script, your posts are starting to all sound alike. Unions and Union members are tools and fools of their corrupt leadership and the Fraud in the White House. Unions and Barry must go.

Posted by: upgp1946 | March 1, 2011 5:22 PM | Report abuse

Walker has been a gentleman throughout this fiasco, unlike his opponents who haven't missed an opportunity to prove how rude and uninformed they are. There is simply no context for Obama's typically stupid statement about vilifying anything. The only person who's been vilified is Walker and he's taken it like a man.

As everyone now knows, the federal government, under Obama's inept leadership doesn't even have collective bargaining for its public sector union workers, thanks to perhaps the only intelligent thing Jimmy Carter did while in office. He repealed collective bargaining for government workers. Does Obama bring up this critical disconnect? Of course not, dissembling is his one great skill. Nearly half the states in the union have right to work laws, making yet another mockery of this contrived "protest."

What we're really talking about here is power. The power the Democrats will lose if public sector unions are pulled into line with the private sector. That's all this is about, greed, power, and the sweaty smell of desperation issuing forth from liberals as they watch the sun set on a century of wayward liberalism.

Posted by: tom75 | March 1, 2011 4:37 PM | Report abuse

Walker -- a fool and his voters are soon parted. Thanks, Gov Walker, for energizing the Democrat base in a positive way no Democrat has done for over a year.

JVK

Posted by: jknapp2 | March 1, 2011 3:50 PM | Report abuse

For all you right-wing anti-union ranters here, let me answer a few of your ignorant assertions. First, unless you live in Wisconsin, you've got no business making any comment about the level of competence of our civil servants. More than two-thirds of them have college degrees and we have one of the cleanest-run and most efficient state operations in the union (at least until now). The people earning a wage from the state do not "steal taxpayers' money" any more than people who earn a wage in the private sector "steal shareholders' money." That's just tea-party propaganda and it betrays a fundamental lack of understanding of the nature of labor/management relations. If workers want to contribute to things like Americans for Prosperity in the false belief that such an organization promotes their interests, that's their choice, but the organization will be working against their interests regardless of what nonsense they've been told. In this country, corporations run just about everything now, and the only bulwark against total domination by the oligarchs (look it up) is the unions. Your choices are not government control of your life or "freedom." Your choice is corporate control of your life by people looking to make a profit out of your efforts, or regulated corporate control, including unions, which at least lets you share in the profits. Take your pick. Anarchy is the only other option.

Posted by: rewriter | March 1, 2011 1:33 PM | Report abuse

You'd think that Republicans, who tend to represent the interests of business large and small--Wall Street, Main Street, or Riyadh Avenue--would believe in the sanctity of contracts. But when the contract is with a group they hate, like unions, suddently contracts are meaningless.

Most union workers have given up raises and other benefits over the past 30 years IN EXCHANGE FOR security in old age, i.e., guaranteed retirement benefits including health insurance. They SIGNED CONTRACTS deferring their compensation in exchnage for future security. But now the Republicans who were swept into office last fall by the angry and the ignorant are reneging on those legally binding contracts. Christ Christie started the trend in New Jersey, and Walker, Daniels, and others are falling in line in their eagerness to breach contracts.

So how can any voter in their states believe a word they say today? They'll just breach any contracts again in the future, only their voting supporters will be their next targets.

Sad, really, that so many have had so much wool pulled over their eyes by so few (Kochs, Rove, etc.) with so much money.

Posted by: adreed | March 1, 2011 1:20 PM | Report abuse

Another poster wrote:
"As for people who complain about public sector workers. Do you have the same vitriol for McDonald's cashiers who mess up your order, make you wait while they talk on their cell phones, or are rude and indifferent? Why does the right give crappy service in the private sector a pass while hold the public sector to a much higher standard? "

Regardless of my political persuasion, I do not give poor private-sector service "a pass." In response to poor private-sector service I complain and/or withhold payment. If I do not receive satisfaction I take my business elsewhere, permanently. My redress is immediate and effective in the most ultimate fashion.

If I get bad service at the DMV, tell me, where do I go, even to complain? I certainly can't withhold payment as I could go to jail for not paying that silly $25 vehicle registration fee. And I certainly can't take my business elsewhere. If my kid's public school teacher is a walking boob, what immediate meaningful power do I have over that person or his/her superiors? None! Can I not pay property/school taxes? No, my home would be sold out from under me, regardless of my complaints. So what is my redress? I have none (of any real, immediate effect) in such a situation.

The government is a stinking monopolistic morass, and unions for the employees thereof are leeches and a cancer on our society. Ban them!

Posted by: flintston | March 1, 2011 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Wheeljc posted: obama is just an embarrassment --- all the way around!
_________

In your country, perhaps. In USA the Pres rocks!

Posted by: J_B_A | March 1, 2011 10:55 AM | Report abuse

I think that Governor Walker is being "civil" in not calling President Obama a hypocrite. If the President is so hell bent to do collective bargaining with the public employees than why does he not offer the same right to all federal public employees. If the Wisconsin public employees want to maintain 72% of total salary in pensions, let them give up collecting their social security since in a sense they are double dipping on the taxpayer's money. Unions need to be in the private sector where fre market pressures control their demands, not the ability to continuously raise taxes.

Posted by: drjeffkunkes | March 1, 2011 10:54 AM | Report abuse

The ignorance and anger of the right wing posters on this thread is notable. Supposedly wealthy people and corporate shills are much to busy to post on line, so all these folks must be a) paid trolls or b) idiots who are blissfully unaware they are against their own best interests.

As for people who complain about public sector workers. Do you have the same vitriol for McDonald's cashiers who mess up your order, make you wait while they talk on their cell phones, or are rude and indifferent? If not, why not? Why does the right give crappy service in the private sector a pass while hold the public sector to a much higher standard? Can you say hypocrisy?

Posted by: Historian1960 | March 1, 2011 10:53 AM | Report abuse

Wheeljc posted: obama is just an embarrassment --- all the way around!
_________

In your country, perhaps. In USA the Pres rocks!

Posted by: J_B_A | March 1, 2011 10:52 AM | Report abuse

I believe that some out of work right wingers are being paid to post nasty anti-administration comments.

Posted by: fasm7700 | March 1, 2011 10:38 AM | Report abuse

Obama: "We need to attract the best and the brightest to public service."

Must be he wants to hire illegal aliens for public service jobs, because we all know from hearing over and over again from the Dems that illegal aliens are the "best and the brightest".

Posted by: win1 | March 1, 2011 10:01 AM | Report abuse

Touche' Mr. Werwie.

Obama is a union (s)tool.

Posted by: flintston | March 1, 2011 10:00 AM | Report abuse

Tommy7757's rant ends with "Long Live The Union"... again sounds like something from a Communist March Song!
Corp Unions are fine and have a place... not so Gov't Employment Unions...especially as they pay-off Congressional Votes with taxpayer provided money.

Posted by: NeoConVeteran | March 1, 2011 9:49 AM | Report abuse

Bubbette1 govt. unions are a cancer eating away at the Nation? What about the unaffordable Bush tax cuts (primarily for his rich buddies), farm subsidies (collected by rich farmers and corporations) and subsidies/tax breaks for oil companies who are raking in billions a year. These are cancers that are eating away at our Nation at the benefit of a few priviledged at the top of our society. Why don't you ask Walker about his close financial ties with the Koch brothers and what their motives are?

Posted by: lyndee1 | March 1, 2011 9:47 AM | Report abuse

Greetings to All Idiots and Nut Jobs. I find it astounding that some many right wing igonorant idiots make public comments. I have some advice for you, read the facts before you say something stupid. Gov Walker is a filthy liar who believes that if you tell a lie enough times it becomes the truth. Federal and all other public sector workers need unions to ensure their rights as workers are protected. For those who think government works are of a lesser calibur than the public sector, who in the hell do you think you are? We work harder than our non-government counter parts and the proof is in the fact that your life would be miserable without our efforts. You republicans are pethtic losers who are to stupid to know your own party could careless about your welfare, unless you are stupid enough to provide financial support to their candidates and causes. Long Live the Union - Protectors of Workers Rights!

Posted by: Tommy7757 | March 1, 2011 9:28 AM | Report abuse

Bubbette1
In response to your post, I would remind you that what you are calling government unions is simply people like me who have joined together to better our workplace environment. Why do you keep referring to the unions as if they are some vague unknown giant enemy that we must attack.

As to your statement that government unions are not the same as public unions; please explain your reasoning on that. They are both just groups of everyday people banding together to fight for a better America for us all. Where are you from and what income level are you, that you feel you have the right to pursecute dedicated state and public employees while hiding behind the anonymity of a blog comment section? Instead of striking out at your neighbors, go to your local government office and volunteer your time to the betterment of your community. You will feel better for it, this I can guarentee.

--------------------

One must be careful to differentiate between PUBLIC Unions which refer to those who work for the Government and PRIVATE Unions (those who work for Private Industry) in this discussion. Private Unions are negotiating with Private Industry Leaders - Public Unions are negotiating with the Tax Payers.

Public Union "Bosses" use the dues forcibly collected from employees to affect political races because those who are elected will be the ones facing them across the negotiating table. The elected one is supposed to be working for the Tax Payer but owed a political debt to the Union who financed their campaign. This is a huge conflict of interest.

Fifty years of this kind of political maneuvering has led to Public Unions enjoying certain extended benefits not shared by the Private Unions or the Non Union Workers - at the expense of the Private Union Workers and the Non Union Workers.

Total union membership in this country stands at about 11% of the total workforce yet the political power of the unions far exceeds that of the private citizen.

President Carter and a Democratic Majority Congress chose not to allow Federal Public Union Workers to Collectively Bargain - The Governor of Wisconsin is simply stating that the Public Unions of his state must give up Collective Bargaining for Health Benefits and Pensions.

Posted by: LMW6 | March 1, 2011 9:27 AM | Report abuse

A thought to our Public Employee Neighbors... take a look at WHO is backing and encouraging your efforts... TO WHAT END?
A chant of "Workers Of the World Unit?" heard in Wisc... could have come from St.Peterburg Square, Russia in 1917, which started out as a union protest and morphed into....
As for the sorry example of the Socialist Democratic Party... you are truly bought and paid for.

Posted by: NeoConVeteran | March 1, 2011 9:25 AM | Report abuse

The Community Organizer Barry not only fails to comprehend the meaning of the 10th Amendment he is flat reckless as he is fical in his behavior. The country needs leadership which he continues to demonstrate a serious lack.

Now is the time for ObaMao to call off his political dogs, those trained to rush in for the political kill, to draw blood and rend flesh, without thought as to the consequences! The Democratic National Committee need not arrange more transportation to bring professional agitators and community organizers into the struggle in Wisconsin. The President’s personal “Hit Men,” his Organization for America, need to be leashed and led back to their kennels.
I suggest strongly that the so-called President follow Ben Franklins advice and ... Remain silent and be thought a fool rather than open his mouth and confirm it!

Posted by: NeoConVeteran | March 1, 2011 9:15 AM | Report abuse

As a Constitutional 'law professor', what portions of the Tenth Amendment does Obama NOT COMPREHEND?? "Each state retains its sovereignty, freedom, and independence, and every power, jurisdiction, and right, which is not by this Confederation expressly delegated to the United States, in Congress assembled."

Let me attempt to clarify:

MINE IS MINE: NOT YOURS!

KEEP YOUR HANDS AND NOSE OUT OF MY BUSINESS!
NOT WANTED! NOT NEEDED! NOT APPRECIATED!!

Clear enough????

Posted by: wheeljc | March 1, 2011 8:57 AM | Report abuse

Obama obviosly does not have a clue about Government employees. I knew a handful of competent government employees during my 40 plus years of dealing with them. Most were totally uncaring and incompetent. They would have starved in the public sector.Almost all were too dumb to realize what a joke they were.Very few were problem solving. they were part of the problem! Abolish civil service!

Posted by: randy2b1 | March 1, 2011 8:42 AM | Report abuse

First of all President Obama is not a Marxist nor a Socialist, these people who are insistent in calling the President names are the one's who did not vote for him from the onset, secondly, they hide behind the notion that "just because I oppose him does not me.an I hate him" but they do. They are simply cowards who hide behind the disgusting veil of "I am not a racist"

It's very insulting to the intelligence of those of us who uphold the true meaning of what America stands for; ."Fairness and respect for the dignity of every human being." Therefore, to read all of these cynicisms; pessimistic views and opinions coming from mainstream citizens; people who can afford to sit in front of a computer or commute with a lap top being so disgustingly myopic and have no discernment for the future of our country. Cry babies who always see the drinking glass as half full. This attitude is a misguided conservative fortitude, conservatism is meant to be up beat with alternating ideas--so what happened....?. Have a life, Obama doesn't know you nor do you know him personally, to hate him because he doesn't know you personally hurts only you, venting meaningless hatred for him I don't think he makes it any of his business.

Posted by: mdcpbd | March 1, 2011 7:57 AM | Report abuse

Correction, Perry Bacon. Not just taking away collective bargaining from state employees, but also from all municipal employees other than fire and police. So a highway worker in Fond du Lac county could no longer grieve about being denied her vacation choice, or a custodian in Sun Prairie school district could no longer grieve about not getting posting as maintenance worker, or a clerk for City of Madison could be laid off out of seniority order. Unions have already agreed to all the economic changes Gov. wants -- so those who support his plan, please explain how voiding such non-economic conditions of employment help address state budget situation.

Posted by: stuartlevitan | March 1, 2011 7:45 AM | Report abuse

Once again Obama attacks someone that is concerned about the economy and the deficits. If anyone doesn't embrace Obama's socialist agenda, Obama attacks them - time for America to rid themselves of this marxist - the GOP should ignore his wishes and pass all legislation with those Dems that care about the deficit (moderate and Blud Dogs). The 212 elections are less than 2 years away now and America needs to prepare for freedom after Obama's departure, just as those in Libya must prepare for governing after their dictator is removed.

Posted by: Realist201 | March 1, 2011 6:15 AM | Report abuse

Again, comments from the chief organizer to further personalize and distort the real problem. Collective bargaining in the public sector should be eliminated, period.
This is what he is best at and a prime benefactor of the current system. If the corrupt system Gov Walker wants to permanently change is so terrible, why don't you all just quit, go out and get a real job in the obameconomy. The comments I read defending the current system by some of you public employees are so out of touch. Whom do you think are being stuck to pay these deals? I keep on seeing these comments about the rich and wall street. It is the average person who is being stuck
paying your bloated benefits and pension plans, not wall street or the rich. You know it but don't care as long as the current scam remains the status quo.

Posted by: carl19 | March 1, 2011 2:30 AM | Report abuse

There's no doubt that the legislators in Wisconsin are AWOL and have abandoned their solemn oath of office to the people of Wisconsin, not to mention purposely perpetuating open chaos to promote their left-wing democratic socialist agenda of anarchy that's fueled by the Obama union agenda. Governor Walker should immediately, without hesitation or reservation, call a special session with his Attorney General to have the AWOL legislators impeached and removed ASAP. By doing so he will show strength and bring stability to his state and provide an example of leadership for the rest of the country. This is the United States of America, not the United States of Unions.

Posted by: mikeokla | March 1, 2011 2:08 AM | Report abuse

I totally understand the frustration of union members about this topic, especially since they are being asked to take cuts even as Wall Street and crony capitalists are stealing billions.

On the other hand, public sector unions really aren't a good idea. Private sector unions serve a clear purpose, but public sector unions are basically a scam. I could go into detail, but this YouTube actually does a better job, so if you actually want to understand the way public sector unions work, watch it. It requires some thinking, but is worth it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6x-jC5h421U

Posted by: TheSpeakerFTD | February 28, 2011 10:18 PM | Report abuse

OBAMA IS ALL ABOUT DIVISION AND CLASS WARFARE.

November 2012 can't come soon enough!

Posted by: 2012frank | February 28, 2011 10:02 PM | Report abuse

The Public Service Union workers have better job security, better wages and better benefits and pay LESS for those better benefits than anyone else.

Their taxpayer-funded jobs also provide taxpayer-funded dues that Union leaders use to elect friendly Democrats and pressure Government.

Isn't that pure cronyism ? Chicago-style ?

Who knew that Democrats would stand with a predominately white pampered privileged class against the working class taxpayer ?

Who knew Democrats would oppose fairness, equality and income re-distribution ?

Posted by: pvilso24 | February 28, 2011 9:56 PM | Report abuse

How to balance any government budget:

CUT BENEFITS OF AVERAGE JANES AND JOES

or (drum roll please)

TAX THE VERY RICH


Posted by: California_Jim | February 28, 2011 9:28 PM | Report abuse

How to balance any government budget:

CUT BENEFITS OF AVERAGE JANES AND JOES

or (drum roll please)

TAX THE VERY RICH


Posted by: California_Jim | February 28, 2011 9:24 PM | Report abuse

Ha! Loved your comment California_Jim. I am convinced it is going to take us all and that you can't squeeze any one segment of America.

Candidly, we have all lost faith in government and are rather tired of the fringes in both political parties. The rich can't escape as it appears they have nor can the wasteful spending on entitlements and platinum benefits for overpaid Union Thugs.

Teachers and Union Workers should capitulate and then demand Obama re-visit Taxes for the wealthiest 1 or 2%. However, I don't expect anything rational because (1) Obama can't lead (2) The Party fringes would rather sink than swim (3) Both parties seem to be ignoring the will of the People as clearly expressed in the mid-term elections.

Posted by: 2012frank | February 28, 2011 9:07 PM | Report abuse

How to balance any government budget:

CUT BENEFITS OF AVERAGE JANES AND JOES

or (drum roll please)

TAX THE VERY RICH


Posted by: California_Jim | February 28, 2011 8:58 PM | Report abuse

How to balance any government budget:

CUT BENEFITS OF AVERAGE JANES AND JOES

or (drum roll please)

TAX THE VERY RICH


Posted by: California_Jim | February 28, 2011 8:55 PM | Report abuse

Walker's spokesman is like Sarah's Tweets.
No need to take them seriously, they are second-hand.

Posted by: OldUncleTom | February 28, 2011 8:52 PM | Report abuse

In the 2010 Midterm Elections, the Republican Party gained 63 seats in the U.S. House of Representatives and six seats in the U.S. Senate from the Democratic Party. Republicans also gained six governorships, including Florida, Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Michigan. Republicans gained 680 seats in state legislatures, the most in the modern era.

Democratic loses could be attributed to public rejection of the socialistic policies of the Obama administration. The public disapproved of President Obama's economic policies. In the days leading up to the election, a majority of voters supported repealing/replacing The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, sixty-five percent of voters said that the economic stimulus package either hurt the economy or did no good, and fifty-four percent of those voting said they were dissatisfied with the performance of Barack Obama.

Check this link to see the enormity of the problem:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GNFb6qe7Tmg

November 2012 can't come soon enough!

Posted by: 2012frank | February 28, 2011 8:50 PM | Report abuse

Bubbette1
In response to your post, I would remind you that what you are calling government unions is simply people like me who have joined together to better our workplace environment. Why do you keep referring to the unions as if they are some vague unknown giant enemy that we must attack. We union members are MIDDLE CLASS PEOPLE just like most other taxpayers. That so called cancer that is eating away at the nation are the nurses, doctors, firefighters, police officers, teachers, snow plow drivers, garbage haulers, sanitation and utility workers, and many more, that work everyday to better our nation, our state, and our local communities. Maybe the next time your are robbed, your house in on fire, your child is critically ill, or your children need leadership and education to succeed our generation, those cancer ridden citizens should just let it all burn so to speak. But, thankfully, that would never happen. Because what you seem to be forgetting is that these people actually care about their neighbors and communities and believe in the art of giving of yourself for the betterment of others.

As to your statement that government unions are not the same as public unions; please explain your reasoning on that. They are both just groups of everyday people banding together to fight for a better America for us all. Where are you from and what income level are you, that you feel you have the right to pursecute dedicated state and public employees while hiding behind the anonymity of a blog comment section? Instead of striking out at your neighbors, go to your local government office and volunteer your time to the betterment of your community. You will feel better for it, this I can guarentee.

Posted by: VANCB12 | February 28, 2011 8:39 PM | Report abuse

Walker is a nut case and is strictly loyal to the Koch Brothers and other like minded idiots. This is the right time for organized labor to start their own Tea Party while they have the national attention. If these rallies go south the movement if initiated would grow to become an enormus force in the 2012 elections. The members of this new organization should hold their democratic candidates feet to the fire as do the tea party for their candidates. This is the right time and place for a large labor movement culminating in their own progressive party. We should call it the National Labor party and the time is now to begin. Do you hear that AFL-CIO? Get moving and do something.

Posted by: chicagobears | February 28, 2011 8:39 PM | Report abuse

I wanted to see the entire response from Walker. Is there some reason that you are not reporting it? I heard it on the radio and was searching for the text - I thought that quality paper like the Washington Post would have it.
Thank you
Malcolm

Posted by: 4Malcolm | February 28, 2011 8:36 PM | Report abuse

This is the right time for organized labor to start their own Tea Party while they have the national attention. If these rallies go south the movement if initiated would grow to become an enormus force in the 2012 elections. The members of this new organization should hold their democratic candidates feet to the fire as do the tea party for their candidates. This is the right time and place for a large labor movement culminating in their own progressive party. We should call it the National Labor party and the time is now to begin. Do you hear that AFL-CIO? Get moving and do something.

Posted by: chicagobears | February 28, 2011 8:11 PM | Report abuse

Thank you President Obama for finally speaking out to the nation in regards to the treatment of public workers. As a government employee, I have certainly felt physically sick over the last few weeks about this issue. Not only do we have to take drastic, unfair and unplanned or budgeted for wage cuts, but we are also vilified, denigrated, called many names, and are being threatened that our rights and jobs are being taken away from us. These are basic human rights that every other american is entitled too, but they should not able to us. When did we become second class citizens that do not deserve our rights like all Americans. It is what our country stands for, a Free Democracy. It hurts to have your basic human rights trampled upon in the name of saving money. It makes you feel like you have been sold out by a Judas for 30 pieces of silver. Many of our public workers put their lives on the line each and everyday to protect those very citizens that are verbally attacking us in the media. There is just no excuse for anyone calling public workers such as police, firefighters, teachers, public works, public utility, government administration, etc...names like thugs, degenerates, and leeches sucking on the blood of society. These marks have left a lasting impression in our hearts, and we feel betrayed.

The only good thing that has come of this is the 15 plus pounds I have lost in the last two weeks from being so mentally upset over what I feel is an outright attack. I have had to go to the doctor for medication because I have been so mentally upset. I have been nauseaus, nervous, high blood pressure, mentally unable to focus, not sleeping or eating. What others say about me hurts because I have always given over and above to my community, and thought that it was appreciated. So please, before you make a comment to hurt another human being, just remember that we are your friends and neighbors. And words do hurt.

I am the sole support for my family as my partially disabled husband does not work right now due to lay offs at his employer. Taking $500.00 a month from my take home pay will force us out of our 2 bedrooom apartment. I do not know where we will live. I will not be able to support my family. I make $40,000.00 a year and have a degree in accounting and am working on a dual degree in Public Administation and Emergency Management so that I can better serve my community. I have earned and deserve to make a decent wage. And on another note: the Wisconsin Legislative Bureau report to Mark Pocan on 2/28/2011 states that the 165,000,000 million that Walker keeps saying we will lose is actually just a restructuring/refinancing of debt. Instead of making the last payment on a loan in May, it will be spread out over ten more years at 4%, costing an additional 42,000,000 in interest alone. Please do your research.

Posted by: VANCB12 | February 28, 2011 8:01 PM | Report abuse

Now that the Koch brothers run Wisconsin,what will they do next with the State? How many Republicans from Kochonsin will be invited to the party in California!

Posted by: Americacares | February 28, 2011 8:01 PM | Report abuse

Taxpayers do not understand that Governor Walker is taking a stand for taxpayers against big government and government unions.

There is an estimated $4 trillion dollar shortfall owed by taxpayers because of promises made by government at taxpayer expense.

End all government unions and collective bargaining. Government unions are a cancer that is eating away at the Nation.

Do not confuse government unions with private unions.

Obama is the one over his head. Voting present does not work at the White House.

Posted by: Bubbette1 | February 28, 2011 7:30 PM | Report abuse

obama is just an embarrassment --- all the way around!

Posted by: wheeljc | February 28, 2011 7:17 PM | Report abuse

'Poll Shows Support for Embattled Public Sector Workers. Americans oppose weakening the bargaining rights of public employee unions by a margin of nearly two to one: 60 percent to 33 percent.'
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/01/us/01poll.html?hp

"I'm sure the President knows that we have repeatedly praised the more than 300,000 government workers who come to work every day in Wisconsin"

Praised them, threaten to fire 5000, then take away their collective bargaining.

Strange praise.

Posted by: petesnydero | February 28, 2011 6:50 PM | Report abuse

Gov Walker is in over his head. Sixty one percent of the people in Wisconsin are against taking away collective bargaining. The people in that State should recall his governorship.

Posted by: jla3312 | February 28, 2011 6:42 PM | Report abuse

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