RUSH: Here’s the story out of Wisconsin from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: “Dane County Circuit Judge Maryann Sumi issued a temporary restraining order Friday, halting Gov. Scott Walker’s law that would sharply curtail collective bargaining for public employees. … Sumi’s order will prevent Secretary of State Doug La Follette from publishing the law — and allowing it to take effect — until she can rule on the merits of the case. Dane County District Attorney Ismael Ozanne, a Democrat, is seeking to block the law because he says a legislative committee violated the state’s open meetings law in passing the measure, which Walker signed on Friday. Sumi … said Ozanne was likely to succeed on the merits.
“‘It seems to me the public policy behind effective enforcement of the open meeting law is so strong that it does outweigh the interest, at least at this time, which may exist in favor of sustaining the validity of the (law),’ she said. The judge’s finding — at least for now — is a setback to Walker, a Republican, and a victory for opponents, who have spent weeks in the Capitol to protest the bill.”
RUSH: So a county judge can tell the Wisconsin legislature how to do their business. Is that right? Is this how democracy works? A county judge in Wisconsin can tell the Wisconsin legislature how to do its job? The Milwaukee Urinal Sentinel article points out that the complaint is the Senate violated its rules.
The Wisconsin Senate can do whatever the hell it wants to do! Look at the US Congress: They change their rules all the time. What is this open meetings law violation? And now they got this liberal judge saying, “Yep, I think there’s a problem. I think I might have to vacate the law.” Fine, either ignore it, or now that the Democrats in the Senate are back in town, let’s just revote it. Why not just do that? Why not just revote it? The Democrats are back. Or will they flee again, and try to create the same set of circumstances? I don’t know, folks. This stuff, it’s bothered me for the longest time. This whole notion, living off of others, under the guise that you’re helping them — under the doubly offensive guise that they couldn’t get along without you if you weren’t paying them to help you.
Meanwhile, everybody is aware that their state and local taxes (not to mention federal) are going through the roof, property taxes and what have you, and look what happens? It’s never enough, is it? The teachers will walk off the job, and then they’ll use the kids as pawns — the students as pawns. So everybody’s being recalled in Wisconsin. We got a recall effort going against the governor and some Republicans. They’re very quiet proceedings going on, but there’s an effort here on the part of the Wisconsinites to recall these Democrats who fled. Let’s recall this judge! If that’s how we’re gonna do it, let’s just recall this activist judge, this county judge telling the Wisconsin legislature how to do its business.
RUSH: This Judge Sumi, the same Wisconsin judge who back in February in the middle of a statewide debate regarding labor unions, collective bargaining, this is the judge that refused the Madison school district’s request to send the teachers back to work. They went on strike, the Madison school district, “Judge, will you send these teachers back to work so that the youths of Wisconsin could go through the motions of at least attempting to learn things here, to be taught?” The district asked this judge to impose a temporary restraining order to bar teachers from participating in further work stoppages. It referred to the teachers’ protests in the capital as a strike, which are illegal under state law. The judge, Judge Sumi, the county judge, refused to categorize the work stoppage as a strike and said the district could not prove irreparable harm had been caused by the teachers walking out. Oh, okay, so they’re not necessary, then. No irreparable harm to the students, to the pupils, the precious children, no irreparable harm by the teachers not showing up and doing their jobs? Fine, I guess the judge says that means they’re not needed.
It’s sort of like we’re gonna lay off half the newsroom. Only nonessential people will be let go. Oh, so half your newsroom you don’t need? I wonder how that makes the plagiarists who get laid off feel. Judge Sumi is a district county judge. We looked it up. She’s got a very long history of judicial activism, and the complaint here again is that the Senate violated its own rules, open meeting rules. So they don’t even need the Democrats to vote. Just give 24-hour notice and vote again. They don’t need the Democrats. But the Democrats are back. Let ’em in there if they want. Just give 24 hours’ notice. You know, my memory of this is that there was open access for this, access for additional people the meeting was denied, when they filled up. There wasn’t any more room for them. Where was this judge when those 14 Democrats were violating the rules of the Wisconsin Senate by hiding out in another state? I wonder what woulda happened if somebody would have brought an action before her. She no doubt would have found in favor of the senators who had fled and were at the DMZ, the demilitarized zone between Wisconsin and Illinois.
RUSH: I’ve consulted with some legal experts that I know to try to explain what happened here in Wisconsin. Here’s the best guess in the form of analysis right now. This judge, Judge Sumi, a county judge, issued a temporary restraining order against the Wisconsin law. The purported justification is to consider whether the procedure by which it was passed violated the state’s open meetings law. So the judge said there’s a question as to whether or not this happened legally, so we’re gonna stop the law. We’re gonna put a temporary stay on this law while we look and see whether or not it happened legally. Now, the governor, Scott Walker thinks this is all BS.
It turns out that they got procedural advice from the state Senate’s chief clerk (who is said not be a partisan guy, has worked for both parties) and the state Senate, Wisconsin state senate’s chief clerk laid out the rules for passage of the law — which, after laying out those rules, the Republican senators complied with. Now, to us acts of the legislature are presumptively valid. I haven’t read the Wisconsin Constitution, which is why I raised the specter of separation of powers. I don’t know if they have anything quirky on that score, but generally speaking, courts do not exist to be a supervisor of the legislature. We’ve been through this countless times.
The courts are only supposed to get involved if someone’s rights have been violated — and until that is proved to have had happened they are supposed to assume the legislature and the governor who signed the law acted properly. That’s the assumption under which they are supposed to proceed. Imagine… Look at it another way. Imagine the hell to pay there would be if presidents or governors routinely disregarded court decisions rather than assuming the judge has acted properly. (chuckling) We sorta have that happening, do we not? Heh, heh, heh. Imagine the hell to pay if presidents or governors disregarded court decisions rather than assuming the judges acted properly.
Imagine if a governor said to the legislator, “Screw you! I don’t like the way you did this. I’m not signing it. I’m not even vetoing it. What you did here is not even valid because I don’t like the way that you did it.” Assuming that peer branches acted properly unless and until it’s proved otherwise is the deference each branch of government owes to the others. Until there’s proof that it didn’t happen, you don’t change anything. Now, there’s a situation with the rules are different. If you want to get into a lot of minutia about this, a litigant has to show that: A) He’s almost certain to win on his claim that a law is invalid; B) if the law is allowed to operate until a final judicial determination on his claim that the law’s invalid, he will be irreparably harmed.
That is if this goes on and you know it’s gonna get blown up but you don’t stop it and this guy suffers irreparable harm in the process, then you’re not entitled to have the judge issue a temporary restraining order. You get to sue like everybody else. It looks instead like what this judge did, is this judge treated this circumstance as a standard situation. That is, instead of assuming the legislature acted validly she has assumed the legislature acted invalidly and has halted operation of the law for no better reason than somebody filed a lawsuit. Does McDonald’s have to stop selling coffee when an old woman claims that she spilled some and burned her arm?
No. Does the state of Wisconsin have to temporarily suspend this law because somebody has told this judge, “You know what, the open meeting law was violated”? No. But the judge has taken it upon herself to assume just based on the lawsuit alone that the way the law was passed makes it invalid. This is judicial activism on parade. Now, let’s pretend, just for the sake of this discussion, that the law really is invalid. Let’s just pretend. I think that’s BS. I think what we’ve got here is unadulterated, pure liberal activism. The left-wing blogs (I checked ’em at the top of the hour) are ecstatic. They are celebrating this as a triumph of the rule of law. It is the exact opposite of that. But let’s say the law is invalid.
What’s the harm of letting it operate until there is a final legal determination of that? The worst thing that can happen is that any deals bargained in that time could be struck down and everybody would be back to the bargaining table. No irreparable harm in that. Now, this is the funny part. Contrast this with Obamacare. The Obama administration is continuing to enforce the law even though a court has made a final determination that it is invalid. Judge Vinson has said this law’s unconstitutional. He vacated it. He gave ’em seven days and they spat on that. He gave ’em seven days to write it. There is no indication that the law is invalid here.
Obamacare has been said by a judge to be invalid. The judge in Wisconsin has not said the law’s invalid. She has just responded to some complaint from a liberal that the open meetings law was violated. So they just filed a lawsuit, and yet the judge has ordered a halt to the operation of the law. That is patently ridiculous. This is not how it happens unless you’ve got judicial activism to the extreme or to the max going on.
Even so, the Democrats were e-mailed about the hearing. It was posted on the Senate bulletin board. They were advised. As I mentioned to you, the chief clerk, the state senate chief clerk, who’s not a partisan guy, worked for both parties, laid out the rules for passage to the governor. “Okay, here’s what you gotta do, you have a special session, this, this, this, and this,” and that’s what they did. They did this, this, and this. They followed the law. They followed senate rules. Rule 93 Wisconsin senate clearly states no notice has to be given during a special or extraordinary committee hearing. The Democrats were e-mailed about the hearing. It was posted on the bulletin board. Essentially this judge is saying the open meeting law was violated. It wasn’t. No rule was broken. So once again, put a boulder in the road, but the rule is clear, state law is clear, a judge has interceded and given the way things are with liberals on courts we don’t know how this is gonna end up even though we know full well all is bogus, everything about this suit, everything about the temporary restraining order, it is a hundred percent bogus.
Audrey in Little Rock, great to have you on the EIB Network. Hello.
CALLER: Hi, Rush.
CALLER: It is an honor to talk to you and dittos from a conservative Christian woman in Arkansas.
RUSH: Thank you very much, madam.
CALLER: You were kind of getting to my point right before the break a little bit, I think, in that I’m frustrated ’cause I don’t understand what makes all of these union workers think that they have the right to dictate to their employers how much they’re going to make. The way I see it if you’re lucky enough in this economy to have someone offer you a job, and they offer to pay you a wage and you agree to work for that, that’s your choice.
RUSH: Well, this cuts so many ways. In the case of a union where you have so-called collective bargaining, that means there aren’t any individuals being negotiated with, it’s a unit, and it all depends on the leverage that you can get.
CALLER: Yes, I understand that, but I mean if you don’t like what you’re being paid, you need to find another job.
RUSH: Well, yeah.
CALLER: I mean those are your choices. You either work for what your employer is gonna pay you or you find a job to pay you what you want.
CALLER: Yes, sir.
RUSH: This how most people do it. If you’re working someplace and you want more pay you go in and say, “Okay, I deserve a raise.” If they tell you to pound sand, you go someplace else, or you try to.
RUSH: It’s that simple. You’re quite right. Your sensibilities are offended here by somebody, “Well, I demand you pay me.” That’s the nature of unions.
CALLER: I think that a lot of it boils down to is that people no longer live on what they’re able to make. They try to make what they want to live on.
RUSH: Well, yeah, there’s a lot of factors that go into it. In this case you cannot discount union dues. You cannot discount that in terms of the importance and the relevance of union dues to what all is going on here. The National Education Association spent $8 million in 2008 on politics, but they did not accurately report it to the IRS. This is important. The unions are tax exempt, but the money they take in dues and use on partisan political activity is not tax exempt, with some exceptions. Now, the NEA spent $8 million in 2008, and they did not pay a cent in taxes on that money, and they did not report exactly what they were doing with the money. Now, this was all discovered by the Landmark Legal Foundation. The Landmark Legal Foundation took action and got a favorable ruling here. You remember we had the audiotape, this NEA general counsel that retired and made those infamous statements about power. He said we’re effective not because we care about the kids. We’re effective not because we’ve done this. Our effectiveness comes from our power. And the guy went on to attack the Landmark Legal Foundation by name and that’s because they’d filed a whole bunch of past complaints resulting in audits and fines of the NEA by IRS and others. So it’s a money laundering operation, and all of these Democrat members of the public sector unions know full well what their objective is and what their purpose is.
RUSH: Once again here are the usual standards to get a temporary restraining order. To get one, “A plaintiff must prove four elements.” If you want to shut down a law, you have to prove: “(1) likelihood of success on the merits; (2) irreparable harm,absent the order; (3) that less harm will result to the defendant if the TRO issues than to the plaintiffs if the TRO does not issue; and (4) that the public interest, if any, weighs in favor.” Those are the four requirements to get a temporary restraining order. Well, obviously the likelihood of success on the merits cannot be proven here. Irreparable harm cannot be proven. The complaint was filed by a guy named Peter Barca who is a Democrat hack. He’s not a Wisconsin state senator. He served in the Wisconsin House, recently reelected, now back in the House, but he’s not a senator. He’s the hack that’s come along. He can’t prove any irreparable harm here. So you just have a coordinated attack, and you got a liberal judge, county judge who claims now to supersede the Wisconsin legislature. But beyond all that, nothing that was done was illegal according to the rules of the Wisconsin Senate. Nothing. Zip, zero, nada. I tell you, folks, some days I just detest these SOBs. I just detest ’em.
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