As Chicago's 26,000 teachers and other workers in the public school system exercised their bargaining rights to strike for their demands this week, another state's laws aimed at gutting similar rights there, were overturned.
On Friday, Dane County Circuit Judge Juan Colas, reportedly ruled that most of Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker's union busting laws were unconstitutional on both the federal and state level.
According to an ABC News report, Walker plans to appeal the ruling immediately and feels confident that he will prevail; calling the judge "a liberal activist" in a statement he issued after the ruling. He also accused Judge Colas of going "backwards" as well as taking away "the lawmaking responsibilities of the legislature and the governor."
But public workers unions everywhere see this as a resounding victory in their fight to stop what they say is a concentrated effort by both Republican and Democratic mayors across the U.S. to cripple unions that are there to protect workers rights.
Walker's laws, first ostensibly proposed as a budget-balancing measure more than a year ago, quickly became a means to strip public workers such as teachers, prison guards, sanitation workers and others of almost all bargaining rights.
The Republican governor was championed as a hero of sorts by his party for turning his union-muzzling measures into law and was given a welcome befitting such an esteemed title by conservatives at the Republican National Convention in Tampa.
However, Colas didn't think that highly of the governor's plans for Wisconsin's hard-working civil servants.
In fact, his 27-page ruling reportedly called some of Walker's laws, "unfair and unequal," because it separated workers into different classes.
Explaining that they, "single out and encumber the rights of those employees who choose union membership and representation solely because of that association and therefore infringe upon the rights of free speech and association guaranteed by both the Wisconsin and United States Constitution."
When Walker proposed those laws, fierce fighting ensued, with weeks of public workers protests, which, despite the rallies and marches, did not stop them from being enacted.
Many had accused the governor of carrying out the agenda of the billionaire Koch brothers, whose organization Americans For Prosperity has long fought to shape the political landscape to suit their ideology. During the bitter struggle a year ago, an audio had surfaced where Walker was heard discussing the union busting measures with whom he thought was one of the Koch brothers. Only it was a liberal blogger masquerading as the billionaire businessman in his attempt to prove that the governor was bought and paid for and was simply a lackey of the powerful Kochs.
Read more and listen to audio on Walker-Koch brothers connection by clicking links below or video attached above:
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