As protests in Madison, Wisconsin dragged into their second week, both sides held support rallies for their cause across the country as the chaos spread to states such as Ohio and Indiana. Dozens of gatherings referred to as “solidarity events” were hosted across the United States to back the anti-reform Wisconsin demonstrators the week after protests started.
Six men were arrested in Mexico on February 23 in connection with last week’s murder of U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agent Jaime Zapata. One of the men, Zetas cartel member Julian Zapata Espinoza, allegedly confessed to the killing, but claimed the attack was a case of mistaken identity. The arrest came as Mexican President Felipe Calderon announced a visit to Washington to meet with President Obama next week.
Despite the organization of massive union protests in Wisconsin in opposition to the "budget repair bill" proposed by Governor Scott Walker, the Wisconsin Assembly remained undeterred and passed the measure early this morning. The bill would raise the amount most state and local government workers pay for their healthcare premiums from about six percent of total costs to 12 percent, and it would raise their contributions for their pension benefits from less than one percent to almost six percent. It would also eliminate union collective bargaining for government employees for healthcare and pension benefits while allowing collective bargaining for salary increases not exceeding the increase in the Consumer Price Index.
Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney raised $4.7 million last year for his political action committee, Free and Strong America, and he shared some of that wealth through contributions to candidates for Congress committed to repeal of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 — familiarly, if not affectionately, known as “ObamaCare.” Yet few have missed the irony of Romney campaigning now for repeal on the national level of the kind of healthcare reform he worked so hard to enact in Massachusetts. Romney has repeatedly been grilled about the similarities between “ObamaCare” for the nation and “Romneycare” for Massachusetts.
Perhaps the mainstream media was a bit too busy searching for violence within the Tea Party movement to notice that a Massachusetts Democrat said Tuesday it was time for the Wisconsin protesters to “get a little bloody.”