Wisconsin state Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R) appeared Monday morning on Fox News, ahead of Tuesday’s recall elections targeting six GOP state Senators — and cast the contest as a referendum on Gov. Scott Walker’s policies rolling back collective bargaining for public employees, and whether other states would follow the same path.
Fox host Bill Hemmer asked whether Democrats, if successful in gaining control of the chamber, would be able to reverse the state’s budget policies targeting public employee unions and their ability to collectively bargain.
“No, I mean, the Republican Assembly remains in place, as well as obviously Governor Walker,” said Fitzgerald. “But I think, you know, what this has become is more of a referendum on whether or not what happened in Wisconsin in February and in March should be the way the state moves forward.
“We have a balanced budget, we certainly have had great success in eliminating the deficit, of which many other states throughout the nation are facing right now. And the unions are trying to send a signal that if they can recall this Republican state Senate, then this was the wrong direction for us.
What message should people take away from the recalls, Hemmer asked? (This is, of course, a difficult question, seeing as how the elections have not happened yet.) For his part, Fitzgerald hoped for a Republican victory — and that this would be a message to other states, to pursue the same sort of policies.
“I mean, I think what we’re hoping for is tomorrow, that these Republican senators are successful,” Fitzgerald responded, “and that we sent a message that we’re gonna stand with the taxpayers. We’re not gonna stand with the public employee unions, and as a result of that moving forward hopefully we can build a more cooperative effort.
“But nationwide, as this happens in other states, and there’s changes made to collective bargaining, I think you’re gonna see that, you know, Wisconsin is the tip of the spear, and the unions are trying to draw the line in the sand here.”