Wis. GOPers Could Dodge Court Challenge, Pass Anti-Union Law Again

The saga of Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s (R) anti-public employee union legislation is far from over. With the law now blocked and tied up in the courts on procedural grounds, Republicans are publicly mulling the simple step of passing it again.

The Capital Times reports:

Andrew Welhouse, a spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, R-Juneau, said Thursday that while the “preferred avenue” for implementing the collective bargaining bill is still the state courts, there is a “possibility” the bill will be inserted into the 2011-2013 state budget.

“There is a possibility, and it has been informally discussed among Republican leadership, including the Joint Finance Committee co-chairs, that if the matter can’t be fully decided on by the Supreme Court, then it will be inserted into the full budget,” Welhouse told The Capital Times.

In addition, a labor source has told TPM that there is some expectation of action beginning this Tuesday, May 3, which according to the legislative schedule is the next scheduled day for the Joint Finance Committee.In late March, Dane County (Madison) Judge Maryann Sumi blocked the law on procedural grounds, issuing a temporary restraining order on the grounds the plaintiff, the Dane County District Attorney, had a likelihood of success in his complaint that a key conference committee used to advance the bill — and to get around the state Senate Dems’ walkout from the state — had violated the state’s open-meetings law by failing to give proper 24-hours notice.

The Walker administration then made multiple attempts to disregard the ruling and implement the law anyway, before ultimately backing down in the face of repeated orders.

Additional reporting by Brian Beutler.

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