In a stirring, swift decision, Dane County judge Maryann Sumi stopped Governor Walker's controversial budget repair bill in its tracks, issuing a temporary restraining order and stating Wisconsin's open meetings law was probably violated when a legislative conference committee rushed the bill through to the state Senate.More >>
Candidate for Madison Mayor, Paul Soglin, released the following statement on Judge Sumi's decision to grant a temporary restraining order to stop implementation of the Governor's Budget Repair Bill.More >>
Democratic State Representative Mark Pocan, of Madison, released a statement in support of Judge Maryann Sumi's temporary restraining order against publication of Gov. Scott Walker's budget repair law.More >>
MADISON (WKOW) -- Even as plans to appeal the ruling move forward, Republican leaders in both the senate and assembly insist they followed the law from the start.
Some say the judge's ruling is only delaying the inevitable. The Senate and Assembly could bring the same exact bill back and pass it through the legislature.
But, Democrats feel Judge Sumi's ruling has opened a new window to potentially negotiate a new budget repair bill.
From the Courthouse to the Capitol, loyal union supporters relished the news when they heard of Judge Sumi's ruling.
Miriam Anderson of Madison says, "I think what its done is its made a statement that the rules are for everyone."
Within hours of the ruling Attorney General JB Van said the Department of Justice will appeal the temporary restraining order. Van Hollen says the Legislature and the Governor are responsible for the enactment of laws, not a Dane County Judge.
Assembly Minority Leader Peter Barca argues, court is exactly where this should be decided. He says it's the court's right to step in when the legislature is abusing it's power.
While the budget battle plays out in court, time will only tell what the Republican controlled legislature plans to do to move Governor Walker's controversial budget repair bill forward once again.
In theory both houses could bring back the exact same bill and pass it with the Republican majority. Representative Mark Pocan (D-Madison) says if that's what ends up happening, he's okay with it as long as the rules are followed this time around.
Rep. Mark Pocan (D-Madison) says, "It's time to go back to where we should be, pause, and lets vote on things the way they should in an open way so the public can participate."
Democrats remain hopeful the same bill won't be back on the floor. They hope Republicans will take Judge Sumi's ruling as a second chance to take a different look at the budget repair bill.
Rep. Peter Barca (D-Minority Leader) says, "Now that there is a pause in action, perhaps we can take a step back and try and do what was reported to be the goal from the start which was to pass a fiscal bill to correct short term problems that we have between now and June 30th."
Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald and Assembly Speaker Jeff Fitzgerald released a joint statement Friday after the ruling. They feel Judge Sumi's ruling is an attempt to re-write the constitutional separation of powers. They're confident an appeals court will find they followed the rules and go on to say, "We highly doubt a Dane County judge has the authority to tell the legislature how to carry out its constitutional duty."
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