Fleebagger introduces anti-fleebagging amendment in Wisconsin

posted at 3:35 pm on March 15, 2011 by Ed Morrissey

And so fleebagging irony comes full circle.  After Democrats in Wisconsin pitched a fit yesterday over the decision of the Republican Majority Leader to actually hold fleebaggers in contempt for running away from their jobs and creating a three-week crisis, and a day after teachers began forcing their students to sing diatribes against the governor, one of the runaway Democrats have finally admitted that perhaps running away wasn’t quite so honorable after all:

A Democratic state senator wants to make it impossible for senators in the future to block legislative action by leaving the state. …

“The main point I want to make is that what we did we had every legal right to do. It was an extraordinary step against an extraordinary bill,” [State Senator Tim] Cullen said. But “the institution of the Senate is not well-served going forward by having this particular avenue available.”

Cullen said his proposal for a constitutional amendment would simply eliminate the requirement currently in the state constitution that three-fifths of state senators be present for the body to vote on certain fiscal bills, including those that contain spending items.

A constitutional amendment must be approved by two consecutive Legislatures and voters in a statewide referendum, meaning it takes at least two years to accomplish.

The timing is rather interesting on this proposal.  If Democrats succeed in getting this amendment passed, they’ll certainly be hoping to get the majority back along with it.  But putting the amendment on the ballot at the same time as a legislative election will remind the voters why this amendment is necessary.  That won’t help the Democrats who fled the state, or any of the other Democrats on the ballot, either — since it will act as an admission that what Democrats did was illegitimate, even if not specifically illegal.

Republicans can remind voters that they didn’t flee the state while in the minority in an attempt to hijack the legislature.  Such a change would only apply to Democrats who apparently have to be restrained into accepting the outcomes of elections.  Let’s see how well the Democrats do with a campaign slogan of “Stop us before we fleebag again!”


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Don’t pass it before the recall…

Make it a recall election issue…

1. Did you support those who left the state?
2. Will you support ending that practice if elected?
3. Are you a hypocrite?

ninjapirate on March 15, 2011 at 3:36 PM

Stupid is as stupid does.

GrannyDee on March 15, 2011 at 3:37 PM

Don’t do it! You Republicans need to do the same thing if you lose the Majority!

sandee on March 15, 2011 at 3:38 PM

Amend it to ONLY apply to Democrats.

jamie gumm on March 15, 2011 at 3:39 PM

Some people can’t act with honor and integrity unless legally bound to do so.

Scrappy on March 15, 2011 at 3:39 PM

These people are industrial grade a-holes.

Chuck Schick on March 15, 2011 at 3:40 PM

Let’s see how well the Democrats do with a campaign slogan of “Stop us before we fleebag again!”

HEH! that’s awesome.

Since Democrats have derided democracy and their republican responsibilities so much, who the heck thinks that they’d recognize a law that requires them to stay put and represent the people that sent them to Madison?? Isn’t ‘getting elected’ enough to compel them to keep the seats warm in the capital?

ted c on March 15, 2011 at 3:40 PM

Next up: Nancy Pelosi pushes ban on botox.

MadisonConservative on March 15, 2011 at 3:41 PM

Eh, It’s a demorat who thinks the demorats will retake the WI state house and he doesn’t want the GOP to return the favor.

Bishop on March 15, 2011 at 3:41 PM

“Such a change would only apply to Democrats who apparently have to be restrained into accepting the outcomes of elections.”

THIS…!

Seven Percent Solution on March 15, 2011 at 3:41 PM

Cullen would also like you to know that the apple from the Tree of Knowledge really wasn’t that good anyway.

Mr. D on March 15, 2011 at 3:42 PM

OT: And in other thug news of the day (via Gateway Pundit):

Union supporters harrass and superglue doors of WI grocer

GrannyDee on March 15, 2011 at 3:43 PM

And so the last act of a toddler’s tantrum is to take his ball and go home when he no longer wants to play with the other kids.

Beyond pathetic, even for Democrats.

angryed on March 15, 2011 at 3:43 PM

How does the Commerce Clause apply here?

Del Dolemonte on March 15, 2011 at 3:43 PM

Cheese Heads?
Empty Heads!

dhunter on March 15, 2011 at 3:43 PM

I was 4 fleebag’n before I was against it.

Bwahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

How stoooooooopid do ya have to be????… to live and vote DEMOCRAT

roflmao

donabernathy on March 15, 2011 at 3:44 PM

It’s obvious why they’re doing this. If the Dems regain the majority in the legislature either through the recalls or in the next election, they’ll wanna make damn sure the GOP can’t and won’t do the same thing. Personally I don’t see the Republicans pulling a stunt like fleeing the state. First of all, they’re better than that. Secondly, they know the media would suddenly come to their senses and no longer defend this tactic as a legitimate form of dissent.

Overall I think it’s probably for the best that such an amendment be passed. It may benefit the Dems in the short term, but in the long run it’s good for everyone that this kind of crap never happens again.

Doughboy on March 15, 2011 at 3:45 PM

The *FacePalm* can’t even deal with this backassery!

upinak on March 15, 2011 at 3:45 PM

(the) constitutional amendment would simply eliminate the requirement currently in the state constitution that three-fifths of state senators be present for the body to vote on certain fiscal bills, including those that contain spending items.

Hold on … that sounds like something we’d regret in the future.
Hmmmm.

pambi on March 15, 2011 at 3:46 PM

Ban fleebagging, but legalize Battle of Athens-ing.

fossten on March 15, 2011 at 3:48 PM

“The main point I want to make is that what we did we had every legal right to do. It was an extraordinary step against an extraordinary bill,” [State Senator Tim] Cullen said. But “the institution of the Senate is not well-served going forward by having this particular avenue available.”

aka “Only liberal ‘representatives’ may be kindergartners”.

Diapers are indignant.

Schadenfreude on March 15, 2011 at 3:50 PM

Cullen was one of the Fleebaggers that worked to come home and isn’t supported heavily by Big union.
He also was one of the last to leave the capitol and admited that thursday he had no idea why he was leaving.
He may be doing this so Democrats can’t do this again on the budget.

Gracelynn on March 15, 2011 at 3:50 PM

Cullen said his proposal for a constitutional amendment would simply eliminate the requirement currently in the state constitution that three-fifths of state senators be present for the body to vote on certain fiscal bills, including those that contain spending items.

This is most assuredly NOT making fleebagging illegal. This is changing the rules for voting on spending measures.

There is no reason on God’s green earth to trust a fleebagger. Whatever they’re up to with this, it will work to their advantage. Bet on it.

Dee2008 on March 15, 2011 at 3:53 PM

Don’t pass it….

cmsinaz on March 15, 2011 at 3:53 PM

Ban fleebagging, but legalize Battle of Athens-ing.

fossten on March 15, 2011 at 3:48 PM

This!

Knucklehead on March 15, 2011 at 3:54 PM

Moral Authority Card: Unclear on the Concept Edition.

TexasDan on March 15, 2011 at 3:55 PM

He may be doing this so Democrats can’t do this again on the budget.

Gracelynn on March 15, 2011 at 3:50 PM

No. In Wisconsin, any amendments to the constitution have to be passed by two successive legislative sessions. It would take another two years to get passed.

WisRich on March 15, 2011 at 3:59 PM

The pot calling itself black?

trigon on March 15, 2011 at 3:59 PM

This is an under handed way to be able to undo the union restrictions with a simple majority. I wonder if they think they will be successful in recalling enough Rs to make a majority but not a quorum.

Democrats never do things for good reasons, it’s always a trick.

There should be a specific law with severe punishment for abandoning the state to stop a vote. In fact I think anyone who would do such a thing should have to face the voters right away. It should trigger an automatic recall vote.

Don’t change the rules to make it easier to spend money.

petunia on March 15, 2011 at 4:00 PM

OT: And in other thug news of the day (via Gateway Pundit):

Union supporters harrass and superglue doors of WI grocer

GrannyDee on March 15, 2011 at 3:43 PM

It occurs to me that convicting all the union thugs of felonies would take away their right to vote. I hope they are catching these guys.

petunia on March 15, 2011 at 4:04 PM

There should be a specific law with severe punishment for abandoning the state to stop a vote. In fact I think anyone who would do such a thing should have to face the voters right away. It should trigger an automatic recall vote.

Don’t change the rules to make it easier to spend money.

petunia on March 15, 2011 at 4:00 PM

Exactly.

Dee2008 on March 15, 2011 at 4:04 PM

Dems want to make it easier to tax and spend? This has a thin wrapping, and the GOP is suicidal if it gets behind it.

Just eliminate the quorum requirement, but make fiscal measures need 60% to pass.

theperfecteconomist on March 15, 2011 at 4:05 PM

Rules don’t apply to liberals and the rules are applied harshly to conservatives (and we see that conservatives are more than happy to self-flagellate themselves just to help out). Therefore, more rules is bad for conservatives.

My advice for conservatives, more backbone.

joeindc44 on March 15, 2011 at 4:09 PM

(the) constitutional amendment would simply eliminate the requirement currently in the state constitution that three-fifths of state senators be present for the body to vote on certain fiscal bills, including those that contain spending items.

Hold on … that sounds like something we’d regret in the future.
Hmmmm.

pambi on March 15, 2011 at 3:46 PM

Yep, at some time in the future democratics will quite likely take back Wisconsin, and I can see them gathering in the middle of the night on a Sunday without telling Republicans what is happening. The liberal old media would hail them as brave and imaginative, and upholding the wishes of the people, etc, etc.

slickwillie2001 on March 15, 2011 at 4:13 PM

Constitutional Amendment is the nuclear option for this. The senate has large leeway on making rules which determine if a Senator is present in forming a quorum. Thus all they need to do is make it such that once a call to form a quorum is made, any senator after a specified period of time who does not show up, call in, log in or so forth is automatically considered present. Make the period 48 hours which is long enough for a senator to be able to fly back from anywhere in the world to make the session. That would settle this. What this does is prevents what the quorum is intended to prevent, which is an ad hock quick call to session followed by votes leaving the minority out of the loop for the entire process. It also prevents the poor choices made by those who fled the state by making it known that they can only hold up the process for a maximum of 48 hours.

astonerii on March 15, 2011 at 4:16 PM

Pass a bill that these Fleebaggers can’t leave the State Evah,
The rest of the country shouldn’t have to put up with politicians this Dam stoopid, we have our own challenges!

Keep the clowns in your state or else!

dhunter on March 15, 2011 at 4:17 PM

I can’t even imagine the chutzpah it must take for a fleebagger, of all people, to now try and say well, no more of that. These people truly have no shame.

changer1701 on March 15, 2011 at 4:18 PM

There’s no need for the GOP to agree to a new law here. Instead, have a press conference where they announce that they don’t understand why Democrats think they need a law to force themselves to act like adults and stay on the job.

Laura Curtis on March 15, 2011 at 4:19 PM

A constitutional amendment must be approved by two consecutive Legislatures and voters in a statewide referendum, meaning it takes at least two years to accomplish.

Hey, Dems, let’s fleebag for two years before it’s illegal !

Just eliminate the quorum requirement, but make fiscal measures need 60% to pass.

theperfecteconomist on March 15, 2011 at 4:05 PM

60% of the members present. That way, if a 40+% minority wants to block something, they have to show up. Just like the U. S. Senate.

There’s a proverb in French: “Les absents ont toujours tort” (Absent people are always wrong). Let’s apply this to cheesehead Senators.

Steve Z on March 15, 2011 at 4:20 PM

I’m surprised that boy can walk into the chamber to propose it, with the size of the balls on him.

JohnGalt23 on March 15, 2011 at 4:20 PM

Yeah, this should wait until the election. Otherwise it let’s the Dems have “their cake and eat it to” in denying the Republicans a tactic they might want to use in the future.

Iblis on March 15, 2011 at 4:20 PM

Didn’t the fool pledge to do his job and uphold his constitution?

Schadenfreude on March 15, 2011 at 4:23 PM

Mama’s Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to be Fleebaggers…..

/waylon

ted c on March 15, 2011 at 4:24 PM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N_a4BU09GrU

Maybe Ed and the fellas could cover Waylon and Willie for another Fleebagger Anthem??

ted c on March 15, 2011 at 4:25 PM

Does anyone doubt that had the situation been reversed, -with Republicans fleebagging, that the democratics would have removed the financial aspect from the bill in order to use the reduced quorum requirement, all before the Republicans had checked into their hotels?

In this case the Republicans waited 19 days.

slickwillie2001 on March 15, 2011 at 4:27 PM

There’s no need for the GOP to agree to a new law here. Instead, have a press conference where they announce that they don’t understand why Democrats think they need a law to force themselves to act like adults and stay on the job.

Laura Curtis on March 15, 2011 at 4:19 PM

Brilliant!!

LASue on March 15, 2011 at 4:27 PM

These people truly have no shame.

changer1701 on March 15, 2011 at 4:18 PM

Please consider this type of behavior and mentality is common among liberals and Democrats next time you are tempted to vote for one.

scotash on March 15, 2011 at 4:28 PM

The spirit of the 3/5ths rule is to prevent a simple majority from running roughshod in the event the minority isn’t able to be on the floor. Not attendance would be a matter of an emergency or an inability to attend. These despicable fleebaggers PURPOSELY refused to attend.

So in reality, the law should be clarified that the 3/5ths is only needed if the members are unable to attend and that any other outbursts like what the fleebagging demrats did, would not require a 3/5ths majority.

csdeven on March 15, 2011 at 4:28 PM

On a (sort of) related note, according to Rasmussen, Governor Walker and President Obama have the same approval rating (43%).

Just sayin’.

Left Coast Right Mind on March 15, 2011 at 4:32 PM

I dunno… something is just not quite right with this. Liberals never admit wrong-doing. They don’t even believe in it. Not amongst themselves anyway. Anyone who disagrees is automatically wrong in the Libtard playbook… but they cannot be wrong in their own mind…

I smell a rat in this somewhere.

TASS71 on March 15, 2011 at 4:34 PM

There’s no need for the GOP to agree to a new law here. Instead, have a press conference where they announce that they don’t understand why Democrats think they need a law to force themselves to act like adults and stay on the job.

Laura Curtis on March 15, 2011 at 4:19 PM

This makes the most sense and embarrasses them more.

Mirimichi on March 15, 2011 at 4:34 PM

The headline is wrong. This is an attempt to take over the WI budget process.

Caststeel on March 15, 2011 at 4:38 PM

Somewhere Rod Serling’s spirit is totally digging this. Perhaps a bit jealous, but still digging it.

ButterflyDragon on March 15, 2011 at 4:47 PM

So…according to Cullen, “the institution of the Senate is not well-served going forward by having this particular avenue available.” If the governing body was not well served, then why did he participate? He had to know the effect his absence would have. By Cullen’s own words, he acted dishonorably. He should tender his resignation next.

zoyclem on March 15, 2011 at 4:47 PM

I smell a rat in this somewhere.

TASS71 on March 15, 2011 at 4:34 PM

Yeah, the rat is that they don’t want Republicans doing to them what they just did.

ButterflyDragon on March 15, 2011 at 4:48 PM

I smell a rat in this somewhere.

TASS71 on March 15, 2011 at 4:34 PM

14 of em, and their stinky, beady eyed, little, lyin buggers, the lot of.

Never, ever, ever, ever, ever trust a RAT!

dhunter on March 15, 2011 at 4:51 PM

Some people can’t act with honor and integrity unless legally bound to do so.

Scrappy on March 15, 2011 at 3:39 PM

And some cannot do so even then. (Think the ruling on Obamacare).

silvernana on March 15, 2011 at 4:51 PM

Population of Wisconsin: 5,654,744 (Census)

Number of Union members: 355,000

6.45% of the population want the remaining 93.55% to pay their way.

jamie gumm on March 15, 2011 at 4:56 PM

Republicans can remind voters that they didn’t flee the state while in the minority in an attempt to hijack the legislature.

Ed, you darn well know that if it had been Republicans who had pulled this fleebagging routine and then came back to Madison, instead of being welcomed by thongs of cheering supporters with bagpipe players and full blown victory parades, they would have greeted with bags of feathers, buckets of tars, and plenty of rails to ride them out of town with!

That is what has me chewing iron nails over this whole Madison mess! These 14 gutless wonders who performed what has to be the ultimate act of dereliction of duty are being admired, while there are recalls movements being started against Republicans?

Is there something in the cheese up there in Wisconsin that maybe the FDA needs to look into? Because something is affecting the thinking processes of some people up there.

pilamaye on March 15, 2011 at 5:00 PM

Is there something in the cheese up there in Wisconsin that maybe the FDA needs to look into? Because something is affecting the thinking processes of some people up there.

pilamaye on March 15, 2011 at 5:00 PM

Brain freeze!
It’s prevalent in Minnysooooota too, doesn’t seem to effect ND and SD, Montana and Wyoming though.

dhunter on March 15, 2011 at 5:05 PM

They should make a legislator leaving the state for any reason without the prior consent of both the majority, and minority leaders, or simple majority vote of his/her legislative body a immediately effective resignation. With the exception of a life threatening emergency to his/her immediate family. (Defined in law as parents, siblings, and children.) In which case he/she has 48 hours to either return, or gain permission.

Slowburn on March 15, 2011 at 5:09 PM

What.
The.
Funk.

I swear, we all entered some alternate universe on Election Night ’08.

Right became wrong.
Up became down.
In became out.

Stop this sickening ride – I want off.

RedNewEnglander on March 15, 2011 at 5:53 PM

“the institution of the Senate is not well-served going forward by having this particular avenue available.”

Interesting quote from a guy who had in his hands the power to unilaterally end “this particular avenue”. Hell, he coulda stayed where he was and it never would have come to what it did.

This same guy is now trying to flee responsibility for his own actions by removing, for all time, an important check and balance on the system of good govt. This is a lie from the word go.

runawayyyy on March 15, 2011 at 6:14 PM

The Republicans should put in an amendment to give themselves one free instance of walking out on Democrats.

OxyCon on March 15, 2011 at 6:26 PM

It’s obvious why they’re doing this. If the Dems regain the majority in the legislature either through the recalls or in the next election, they’ll wanna make damn sure the GOP can’t and won’t do the same thing. Personally I don’t see the Republicans pulling a stunt like fleeing the state. First of all, they’re better than that. Secondly, they know the media would suddenly come to their senses and no longer defend this tactic as a legitimate form of dissent.

Overall I think it’s probably for the best that such an amendment be passed. It may benefit the Dems in the short term, but in the long run it’s good for everyone that this kind of crap never happens again.

Doughboy on March 15, 2011 at 3:45 PM

I think it is that exactly. But it will undermine the Repubs if the go either way. Sort of a damned if the do, damned if they don’t. Right now they can’t win in the public opinion.

wi farmgirl on March 15, 2011 at 7:25 PM

It’ll backfire in their fleebagging fascist faces.

It’s reminiscent of when the dhimmicrats in Mass. changed the rule so governor Romney couldn’t apppoint a vacant senate seat in order to ensure John Kerry would be special-election-replaced with a D-unce when he won the Presidency in 2004 (Oh, didn’t he win?).

When RedTed dropped dead(Fred), Gov. Devolved couldn’t appoint a replacement and Martha (Witch Hunt) Coakley was whipped by Scott (Traitor) Brown.

Western_Civ on March 15, 2011 at 7:34 PM

Cullen was one of the Fleebaggers that worked to come home and isn’t supported heavily by Big union.
He also was one of the last to leave the capitol and admited that thursday he had no idea why he was leaving.
He may be doing this so Democrats can’t do this again on the budget.

Gracelynn on March 15, 2011 at 3:50 PM

I don’t know Gracelynn, I don’t know the man but I am very suspect of anything the dems would put forth at this point.

wi farmgirl on March 15, 2011 at 8:04 PM

WisRich on March 15, 2011 at 3:59 PM

What’s your take on it Rich? You think Gracelynn is right, he’s somewhat sorry about it and doesn’t want them to do it again the next time they don’t like something? Or worse their recalls go through and Walker gets voted back in again. (wouldn’t that be a state wide mental break down)

wi farmgirl on March 15, 2011 at 8:09 PM

anybody see this?
http://www.jsonline.com/blogs/news/118029604.html

wi farmgirl on March 15, 2011 at 8:24 PM

Governor Walker and President Obama have the same approval rating (43%).

Just sayin’.

Left Coast Right Mind on March 15, 2011 at 4:32 PM

Made me laugh out loud.

wi farmgirl on March 15, 2011 at 8:27 PM

Is there something in the cheese up there in Wisconsin that maybe the FDA needs to look into? Because something is affecting the thinking processes of some people up there.

pilamaye on March 15, 2011 at 5:00 PM

It’s the birthplace and bastion of progressivism…need I say more? Sucks to be a conservative.

wi farmgirl on March 15, 2011 at 8:33 PM

Cullen said his proposal for a constitutional amendment would simply eliminate the requirement currently in the state constitution that three-fifths of state senators be present for the body to vote on certain fiscal bills, including those that contain spending items.

No Thanks.

There’s nothing the Democrats would like better than someday in the future to pass spending bills with just a dozen or so Democrats present.

How about an amendment saying legislators missing votes without cause removes them from office with immediate effect and a special election to fill the seat in six months?

RJL on March 15, 2011 at 8:52 PM