The standoff over public access to the Wisconsin state Capitol appears to have come to a resolution, after a judge ruled Thursday night that the building could not be locked down during the day as the government had attempted to do -- but that protesters also have to clear out in the off-hours.
As the Wisconsin State Journal reports, Judge John Albert ruled Thursday night that the government "closed the Capitol impermissibly" when it restricted access to the building. He ordered that the limits be lifted by no later than 8 a.m. Monday. The judge, however, did order the removal of protesters when the building is closed: "If the building is closed, there's no one to listen to a demonstration."
In addition, Albert dismissed the state's contention that protesters were disrupting the Capitol and necessitating the restrictions. "Demonstrator is not a word that should be used in a vein of disrespect," said Albert, also adding: "These people were exercising an important right."
It appears that the judge has attempted to restore the status quo that existed up until two weeks ago -- before Gov. Scott Walker's budget proposal and its anti-public employee union proposals triggered massive protests and a political crisis in the state.
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