Thousands turn out Friday to protest at Capitol - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Thousands turn out Friday to protest at Capitol


By Colby Robertson - bio | email | Twitter | Facebook

MADISON (WKOW) -- Protestors from across the state and country continue to gather for rallies outside on the Capitol square. Each day the crowds get larger and their message louder.

Yet another mass rally has just gotten underway here at the Capitol. Reverend Jesse Jackson expected to come to the podium any minute.

It's the second rally of the day. Earlier thousands gathered as local and national leaders took the stage.

Chants of, "Show me what democracy looks like. This is what democracy looks like" filled the Capitol square."

Tens of thousands of people showed up for the fourth day of rallies. The crowds spanning out of sight. All supporters chanting and cheering for yet another afternoon rally.

WEAC President Mary Bell says, "The dignity and respect that every worker in Wisconsin deserves is what this week is about and what we will continues to say day after day, after day, after day."

State leaders reiterating their desire and willingness to sit down with Governor Walker.

Executive Director of WSEU Marty Beil says, "We will meet the Governor halfway but we will not be denied our rights to collectively bargain."

National leaders turned out for this afternoon's rally with a message to Wisconsin that what they're doing is inspiring the Country.

AFLCIO President Richard Trumka says, "What you're doing is unprecedented. It's amazing. It's inspirational. You're inspiring all the people of Wisconsin, the people of Ohio going through the same thing."

Before speaking to protestors outside, Reverend Jesse Jackson spoke and sang inside.

Civil Rights Activist Reverend Jesse Jackson says, "This is not just about money. The state has a surplus of $137 million. They gave away $170 million in tax cuts for corporations. So, while you cannot have tax cuts for corporations and job cuts for workers, it must be a balance. These workers are fighting for collective bargaining and this fight is more about ideology it seems than money. These workers are going to hold out at least one day longer and they will prevail."

La Crosse Social Worker Jessie Luebke says, "It was amazing, we were walking up with Jesse Jackson. We were together. It felt like we made a difference."

Outside a new day and a new rally but this crowd continues to chant the same message. They want to be heard and they won't let up anytime soon.

Madison Teacher Monique Karlen says, "I feel very inspired and supported by all the people that came out to support all public employees."

Conservative Tea Party groups are planning a rally of their own here at the Capitol Saturday from noon until 3:00 p.m.

Tea Party groups planning the rally issued a statement saying Wisconsin's elected officials need to keep their promises to cut spending.

Madison Police say they will have 120 officers on hand Saturday to assist.

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