Madness in Madison – The “Compromise”

By YeOldeScribe ~ March 10th, 2011 @ 11:14 pm

We originally had created a post to go up yesterday praising Wis. Gov. Scott Walker for the first time since the creation of the blog. PoliticalProgressives.com hasn’t been the most supportive of the Republican Governor over the last few weeks, and we felt it was fair and necessary to commend him on an act of good faith.

Then, we learned it was all a stunt when Walker and the Republicans decided to abuse the system rather than use it to compromise. Thanks, guys. Way to waste a perfectly good post from us.

The original CNN article, posted yesterday – well before the plan to pass the Budget Repair Bill without the Democrats was put into motion – was a striking departure from Walker’s well-documented earlier stance of “My Way or the Highway” (and ironically, the Dem’s chose the highway – 41 South to Illinois, to be precise). Let’s take a closer look at what the emails said, and what they meant given the Republican’s actions later on in the day.

Looking at the emails sent, the Democrats were getting a pretty sweet deal. There were six areas of compromise outlined by CNN. How many of those areas Walker would be willing to give up at once is up for debate – I somehow doubt that Walker would be willing to concede all of the points made in the article. But just the idea of Walker compromising is such a departure from the way he was doing things was enough for us to praise the embattled governor.

If the offer was legitimate, we would have recommended that Democrats jump on the compromise before the ink had dried off the printer. Never before had Walker or the Republicans shown even the slightest signs of being willing to compromise, and the Dems didn’t have much to lose by compromising with the governor. As we said earlier, the Senate Democrats were fighting a losing battle. Eventually, the bill was going to be passed, or public opinion would turn against them. There was little for them to gain by holding out anymore. So if the offer had been vaild, the Dems would have been foolish not to take it.

Sadly, Walker’s “compromise” was nothing more than a worm on a fishing lure, as he tried to reel the missing senators back in the boat.

We’ll never no for sure, but PoliticalProgressives.com is of the opinion that the offer was not genuine, and that had the Democrats come back to Madison to agree to the compromise, the Republicans would have called a quorum and they would have passed the Budget Repair Bill without the promised concessions. It sounds underhanded and dodgy, but after yesterday’s stunning display of Republican Democracy (read: oligarchy), I wouldn’t put anything passed them.

Also, Walker’s made it clear that he’s not above using tricks and games to get what he wants, especially in regards to getting the missing Democrats back. As we reported earlier when we looked at the phone call between Gov. Walker and who he thought was a long-time wealthy supporter of his campaign, Walker essentially told the Democrats that as soon as they came back, a quorum would be called and the vote would happen – no discussion, no debate (and he wonders why they never returned…). Our mothers always told us that “if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.” Kudos to the Senate Democrats for tapping into their inner Admiral Ackbar and realizing that Walker’s compromise was indeed a trap.

The idea that Walker and the Republicans would use a compromise as bait to get unsuspecting politicians to return to the state only to renege on the deal and ram through their original proposal is beyond reprehensible, but looking back at how the past few days have unfolded, that’s the only conclusion that can be drawn from Walker’s actions. He was never acting in good faith, he was never sincere, and he sure as hell was never acting in the best interests of the people of Wisconsin. While this is all conjecture and we’ll never really know what would have happened, this is the only scenario we can think of that makes sense.

Then again, after all that’s happened this week in Wisconsin, nothing really makes sense here anymore.

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