Is the Wisconsin Governor really a dictator?

By Tom Quiner

Scott Walker, Governor of Wisconsin

Here’s the accusation:

Governor Scott Walker “is basically taking up the posture of a dictator.”

The accusation comes from the chairman of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, Rep. Keith Ellison, (D-Minnesota).

What has Governor Walker done that’s so bad? He’s doing what the people elected him to do last November: reign in collective bargaining agreements with public employees and get them to contribute more to their health insurance and retirement plans.

It’s called living up to your campaign promises.

The existing collective bargaining structure is flawed. Democrats give unionized state workers generous pay packages and benefits which we, the taxpayers, pay for. In exchange, Democrats expect, and receive generous campaign contributions back from these same unions.

They scratch each other’s back at the expense of us. Governor Walker was elected to do something about it.

It’s not going to be easy. If he succeeds, he may signal a trend that puts his state and others on the path to fiscal sustainability, but at a loss of power for Democrats and public union employees. It may get ugly:

“I’m proud to be here with people who understand that it’s more than just sending an email to get you going. Every once and awhile you need to get out on the streets and get a little bloody when necessary.”

This threat of violence comes from another Democrat, Rep. Michael Capuano (D-Mass). Let’s hope no one gets hurt with this kind of inflammatory rhetoric being spewed by elected Democrats.

Concerns about unionization have been expressed by the left side of the political aisle as well as the right. Former AFL-CIO President, George Meany said:

“It is impossible to bargain collectively with the government.”

President Franklin Roosevelt said:

“The process of collective bargaining, as usually understood, cannot be transplanted into the public service. I want to emphasize my conviction that militant tactics have no place in the public sector. A strike of public employees manifests nothing less than an intent on their part to prevent or obstruct the operations of government.”

Governor Walker seems like a faithful public servant. Even more, he is courageous to stand up for his convictions and ours’ in the face of such heavy-handed opposition.