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Walker’s plan would hurt Wisconsin schools

Gov. Scott Walker is plowing ahead with his full plan for balancing Wisconsin‘s budget, proposing massive cuts to public schools even as he faces a stalemate over his proposal to strip public workers of collective bargaining rights. With Senate Democrats still missing, Walker presented the second part of his two-year spending plan to the Legislature on Tuesday. It relies on getting concessions from government employees to help pay for about $1 billion cuts in aid to schools, counties and cities while avoiding any tax or fee increases, furloughs or widespread layoffs as lawmakers grapple with a projected $3.6 billion shortfall.
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Will Wisconsin battle restore union power?

In trying to take away nearly all collective bargaining rights from state workers, Wisconsin‘s governor may have unintentionally given the American labor movement the lift it needed after years of decline. That was the sentiment this week at the annual meeting of the AFL-CIO, the nation’s largest labor federation. “We’ve never seen the incredible solidarity that we’re seeing right now,” AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka told reporters Tuesday at the federation’s headquarters. Trumka said the clash between pro-union protesters and Republican leaders in Wisconsin has brought a level of excitement to unions that he hasn’t seen in years — one that
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Tea Party rhetoric clashes with local desire for pork

First-term Republican Rep. Tim Scott of Charleston, S.C., says he’s looking for “any way in the world” to get federal money to expand his hometown’s aging harbor. It’s the one way he won’t pursue that’s making South Carolinians angry. Scott, like his state’s famously conservative senator, Jim DeMint, is among a new breed of tea party-backed conservatives who have sworn off “earmarks” — the pet projects that lawmakers can write into spending bills for their districts. He won’t ask for one, won’t support one, doesn’t even want to talk about it. His opposition to earmarks helped get him elected last
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