Never before in Wisconsin history has a new governor lost the trust of the people in such a short span of time—some six weeks.
The problem for Gov. Walker is he is targeting the very people in our society seen as critical to our community: EMTs, nurses, teachers and so on. They're not in their professions for the money.
These folks are saying about the budget: Let's bargain; times are rough.
Walker's response: 'Forget it, no collective bargaining, no unions, and no compromise' violates most people's sense of fairness. And once you do that as a politician, you are through.
Politically, Walker can begin making post-gubernatorial plans for consulting for hedge funds.
“We certainly think we’re winning the public debate on this,” said Sen. Jon Erpenbach (D-Middleton) in Chicago. “People understand this isn’t about money, it’s about stripping collective bargaining rights, and that’s unsettling to them.” (Doug Erickson, WSJ)
One poll has Walker opposed two-to-one, and the demonstrations are just getting started as national media attention is now focusing on Madison, Wisconsin.
If I had to design a communications and legislative strategy to subvert the Walker administration, I could not do a better job than his people have.
I spoke with a major Republican operative late last year and [he/she (I won't say)] said, almost bragging, that obstructing Wisconsin voters, breaking Wisconsin unions, redrawing federal and legislative districts [huge coming fight] and some other goodies were planned months ago.
Specifically, [he/she] thinks Rep. Tammy Baldwin's (D-Madison) Second district can be redrawn out of existence.
I spoke to people at the rally on Wednesday. Most of those people are not even state workers. But they had family members and friends who are.
People seemed more jubilant and elated than angry at Walker. But their sentiments came through clear.
"Hey, [Walker] is messing with my family," said a young woman, appearing in her young-20s.
And you just don't do that.