AWOL Wisconsin Dem Beats The System, Gets His Paycheck Mailed To Him

Wisconsin state Sen. Jon Erpenbach, one of the 14 Democrats who have fled the state in order to block budget quorum on Gov. Scott Walker’s anti-public employee union proposals, has just beaten the Republicans in one of their key efforts to force Dems back to the state – by collecting his legislative pay.

Senate Republicans last week passed a rule suspending the direct-deposit of absent legislators’ pay, requiring them to show up in person at the Capitol — in effect, to provide a quorum — in order to receive a check.

However, as WisPolitics reports, Erpenbach found a workaround: He granted power-of-attorney to two members of his staff, thus authorizing them to conduct many important personal decisions and financial actions on his behalf — such as picking up his paycheck.

Ultimately, Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R) put the check in the mail, instead of giving it to the staffers. Fitzgerald spokesman Andrew Welhouse told WisPolitics: “We confirmed with our attorneys and with the chief clerk that was proper.”

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