The battle over state worker unions continues to spread, as thousands gather in Madison, Wisconsin for the sixth day in a row. Public employees are protesting a bill that will curb public-worker benefits and eliminate most collective bargaining rights. Governor Scott Walker is showing no signs of giving up, and as Democratic senators refuse to return to Madison to vote, will a group of moderate Republican senators negotiate a compromise to end the protests? Fox News Contributor Andrea Tantaros joined Varney & Co. this morning to share her point of view.
“I don’t think that’s going to happen for two reasons,” said Tantaros. “I think that one, the Democrats aren’t going to buy this compromise because it’s only temporary, and two, [Democrats] are looking at the political landscape in Wisconsin and they see Republicans are going to be in control in 2013. [Democrats] don’t want to risk having this be a permanent move.”
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Senator Dale Schultz drafted the compromise proposal, which calls for most collective bargaining rights of public employee unions to be eliminated, but only temporarily. The rights will be reinstated in 2013.
But Democrats are not jumping at the chance to compromise. The Wisconsin state government is shut down, as Democrats remain out of state since fleeing Wisconsin last week. Republicans control the senate 19 to 14, but need 20 senators present to vote on the bill.
“Look these are tough choices,” said Tantaros. “You don’t run away when tough decisions come. You’ve got to grow up and get back to work and figure it out. Everybody needs to share sacrifice.”
Republican Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald is calling the senate back into session tomorrow, and if there are enough senators present, he plans to hold a vote on Governor Walker’s bill. Andrea Tantaros does not think it will end in a compromise.
“I think the power is on the side of the Republicans,” said Tantaros. “[Governor Walker] is holding. He doesn’t want to compromise and I don’t think these Democrats or Republicans are going to.”