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Wisconsin's Judge Sumi Blocks Anti-Union Law

By Stephanie Rabiner, Esq. on March 18, 2011 12:48 PM

The first hurdle has been surpassed for Democrats and pro-union activists who oppose the Wisconsin collective bargaining law. The judge in the case has temporarily halted its enforcement.

After Republicans stripped the bill and voted in less than 24 hours, Governor Scott Walker signed it into law, prompting an immediate lawsuit. Plaintiffs are alleging that Republicans violated the state's open meeting laws when they altered the bill with less than two hours notice.

This lawsuit must still make its way through court, but now that a temporary restraining order has been granted, what's next for union supporters and Scott Walker?

Democrats and union representatives are encouraging supporters to remember that the fight is not over. The order is temporary and doesn't say much about the case's outcome. It was granted because the judge felt that the potential harm to state union members and the importance of open meeting laws outweighed the state's interests.

Some are hoping that the issuance of a TRO will prompt Republicans to get back to the table and propose something better than the Wisconsin collective bargaining law. Others, however, are bracing themselves for the day that the Republicans call for new hearings and a new vote, making the lawsuit moot.

There's no telling what Republicans and Scott Walker will now do. Though they have vowed to appeal, according to the Los Angeles Times, many of the lawmakers now face recalls. Public perception has turned highly negative, and continuing to fight for the Wisconsin collective bargaining law could destroy their careers.

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