For the record: I love Sarah Palin. She is everything that the feminists of old told young girls they could be. She worked her way up from Mayor of her miniscule home town to Governor of Alaska to Vice Presidential Candidate. She has climbed the political ladder while being a wife and mother. She has it all.
Palin: Wis. gov doing the right thing with unions
By TODD RICHMOND, Associated Press Todd Richmond, Associated Press – Sat Apr 16, 6:27 pm ET
MADISON, Wis. – Sarah Palin defended Wisconsin’s governor at a tea party tax day rally Saturday, telling hundreds of supporters that his polarizing union rights law is designed to save public jobs.
Braving snow showers and a frigid wind outside the state Capitol building, the former Alaska governor and GOP vice presidential candidate told tea partyers she’s glad to stand with Gov. Scott Walker. Hundreds of labor supporters surrounded the rally, trying to drown Palin out with chants of “Hey-hey, ho-ho, Scott Walker has got to go!” and “Recall Walker!”
“Hey, folks! He’s trying to save your jobs and your pensions!” Palin yelled into the microphone. “Your governor did the right thing and you won! Your beautiful state won! And people still have their jobs!”
Walker, a Republican, signed a bill into law last month that calls for almost all public workers to contribute more to their pensions and health care coverage, changes that amount to an average 8 percent pay cut. The plan also strips them of their right to collectively bargain on anything except wages.
Walker has said the law will help balance a $3.6 billion hole in the state budget and give local governments the flexibility they need to absorb deep cuts in state aid. Democrats, though, think Walker wants to weaken unions, one of their strongest constituencies.
Tens of thousands of people descended on the Capitol to protest nonstop for weeks against the plan and minority Democrats in the state Senate fled to Illinois to block a vote in that chamber, drawing national attention to the controversy.
Republicans eventually passed the plan without them and Walker signed the measure in early March. Democrats managed to win a temporary court order blocking the law from taking effect, but tensions are still running high over the measure.
Capitol Police estimated about 6,500 people converged on the building Saturday, but said it was impossible to tell how many were tea partyers and how many were labor supporters. The Capitol Police is a division of the Wisconsin Department of Administration, a Walker cabinet agency.
The tea partyers appeared clustered in front of the building, waving “Don’t Tread on Me” flags and signs that read “Public workers — the party is over,” “Thank you, Scott,” and “Tax and spend brings the end.”
Counter-protesters surrounded them, banging drums, bellowing into bullhorns and ringing bells. Bitter arguments broke out along the edges of the two groups over everything from the size of government to corporate power. At one point conservative blogger Andrew Breitbart took the stage and told the labor supporters to “go to hell.”
“I’m serious!” he screamed. “Go to hell! You’re trying to divide America!”
The tea party crowd cheered and the counter-demonstrators booed as Palin stepped to the microphone. She said she was proud Wisconsin conservatives prevailed against union “hatred and violence” — even though none of the protests in Madison ever became physically violent and only one person was arrested Saturday, for disorderly conduct, police said.
Palin said Walker is working to solve Wisconsin’s long-term budget problems so it can honor pension commitments to public workers.
“This is where the line has been drawn in the sand and I’m glad to stand with you in solidarity,” Palin said.
She segued into attacks on President Barack Obama, accusing him of failing to control the nation’s burgeoning debt, leading the country into war in Libya on fuzzy pretenses and ignoring rising gas prices.
Jeff Kuhn, 62, of Chenequa, Wis., carried a “Walker Rocks” sign to the rally. He said Palin’s speech galvanized him.
“We’re not giving up,” he said. “The government union workers shouldn’t be entitled to more benefits than us.”
Tim Wersland, 44, an iron worker from Stoughton, Wis., shook his head as the rally broke up.
“I can’t believe these people are for real,” he said of the tea partyers. “(Palin) is ill-informed. She’s biased.”
**Palin is ill informed and biased. Flatly stated. No facts. Never facts. They know what they have been told. That beautiful woman with the handsome husband and five kids is dumb as a box of rocks. Except she worked her way up from Mayor to Governor to Vice Presidential candidate. Except that she has been RIGHT. Death panels they’re in there! Gas prices souring. A third war in the hands of a Peace Prize winner.