Total cost of Madison protests: $8 million
posted at 2:25 pm on May 17, 2011 by Ed Morrissey
In one week, the Wisconsin Department of Administration reported, the state capitol building took as much damage from its occupation by union protestors as it would otherwise have experienced in 3-5 years. That’s only one small part of the overall bill for the Battle of MadTown to Wisconsin taxpayers, as the MacIver Institute highlights in a video this week. The total bill runs over $8 million, thanks to the necessity of sending police from all over the state to keep unions from shutting down the legislature (via The Right Scoop):
The report on the damage, which will cost around $270,000 to repair, can be found here. Democrats are scoffing at the “3-5 years of damage” claim, with one saying in disbelief, “It’s marble.” Well, yes, and marble doesn’t damage easily — and it’s very costly to repair as well:
The repair of these chips is a very difficult and time consuming effort. Repairs at comers of the stone are difficult due to adhesion of the patching material to a small area. It may be necessary to drill into the stone to set a small pin or other mechanical attachment device to provide a physical as well as adhesive bond. This has been done on previous similar stone repairs in the Capitol.
Also difffcult is the matching and blending of the epoxy patch material. It will take a highly skilled and artistic mason to accomplish a proper match to the stone due to the wide variation in surface color and variegation in any one area. A custom mix is required for each area of repair or patch.
Speaking of cost, last week the editors of the Journal-Sentinel scolded JoAnne Kloppenburg for wasting more time and money in preparing a court challenge to the election after the recount:
Kloppenburg had every right to request the recount, but given the cost and the political fallout, it would have been better had she graciously accepted the loss. And — although again she has every right to do so — it would be better if she didn’t challenge the outcome in court, which it appears she will do. In fact, it appears the recount was mere preamble to the court challenge. This is no way to run an election.
The race will be on to see who costs Wisconsin taxpayers more — the unions or Kloppenburg with her futile and self-serving legal challenges to a race that has a gap of 7,000 votes. But considering the benefits of passing the Walker PEU reforms, taxpayers are much more likely to look at the $8 million price tag for the former as a bargain.