Wisconsin’s Democratic State Senators Are Hiding in a Best Western

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Protesters. Photo: Mark Hirsch/Getty Images

With Wisconsin's Republican-controlled State Senate ready to pass a bill today eliminating the collective bargaining power of public unions and forcing them to pay more for their pensions and health insurance — legislation that 25,000 people gathered to rally against in Madison — the chamber's fourteen Democrats did the only thing they could do: They fled the state for a Best Western in Rockford, Illinois. Without a quorum, which would require at least one Democratic senator to be present, the GOP can't vote on the bill. Wisconsin law-enforcement officials are empowered to escort renegade senators back into the chamber, but not across state lines. This whole thing is a mess for Wisconsin, but great marketing for Best Western, the preferred hideout for fugitive lawmakers everywhere.

Budget Battle: Democrats Who Left State are Located [WTMJ]
Wis. Lawmakers Flee State To Block Anti-Union Bill [AP via Channel 3000]