Mob mentality is taking over our every day reality in 2011. Egypt and much of the middle east is afire from angry mobs, mobilized via social networking. Here in the US, mobs have taken down cyber companies, and unions deny democracy to state houses by making minorities in the legislature flee the state in an attempt to deny the majority a quorum to cast votes on legislative agendas. Even the threat of a mob action has people rethinking how to respond to ensure continuity of business, governance, and day to day operations.
But it seems that this denial of service and mob mentality has been beaten back temporarily, at least in Wisconsin where the “fleebagger” democrats fled to Illinois to avoid providing the majority party with a quorum to vote on legislature.
From the AP here:
The Wisconsin Senate succeeded in voting Wednesday to strip nearly all collective bargaining rights from public workers, after Republicans discovered a way to bypass the chamber’s missing Democrats and approve an explosive proposal that has rocked the state and unions nationwide.
All 14 Senate Democrats fled to Illinois nearly three weeks ago, preventing the chamber from having enough members present to consider Gov. Scott Walker’s “budget-repair bill” – a proposal introduced to plug a $137 million budget shortfall.
The Senate requires a quorum to take up any measures that spends money. But Republicans on Wednesday took all the spending measures out of the legislation and a special committee of lawmakers from both the Senate and Assembly approved the revised bill a short time later.
The unexpected yet surprisingly simple procedural move ended a stalemate that had threatened to drag on indefinitely. Until Wednesday’s stunning vote, it appeared the standoff would persist until Democrats returned to Madison from their self-imposed exile.
The use of mob intimidation tactics is despicable, as is the denial of service of democracy by refusing to allow a vote on important legislature. It is great to see that Republicans were willing to work through the intimidation to find a solution for their state. If only the US Congress could show more fortitude.