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WI Republicans Push Laws before Recall

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TEHRAN, May 9 (ICANA) – The Republicans in the state of Wisconsin attempt to push through last minute reforms before recall elections threaten their control over the state legislature.
Monday, May 09, 2011 6:59:24 PM
WI Republicans Push Laws before Recall

“Everything's been accelerated," said Republican Representative Gary Tauchen. "We've got a lot of big bills we're trying to get done," AFP quoted him as saying.

Over the next eight weeks, the Republicans lawmakers will attempt to push through controversial legislation. Some of their attempts include the legalization of concealed weapons, deregulation of the phone industry, overturning early parole for prisoners, postponing water pollution control regulations, and requiring voters to show photo identification at the polls.

"You're moving forward huge pieces of legislation that dramatically change the direction and traditions and values of this state. Generally, doing that takes much longer," the Democratic Assembly Leader Peter Barca said.

"They know there's a very strong possibility their days of controlling every level of government are numbered," Barca added.

Eight Republican lawmakers are being targeted in the recall campaign efforts, with the first elections scheduled for July 12. The Republicans have also filed recall petitions against three Democratic lawmakers.

The Democrats have filed a formal challenge to the Government Accountability Board against the Republicans' recall petitions on the basis of fraudulent signatures.

"The overwhelming evidence clearly shows a pervasive pattern of election fraud committed by the shady out-of-state organization [Kennedy Enterprises] hired by Republicans to collect recall petitions," said Senate Democratic Leader Mark Miller.

Republican Governor Scott Walker will likely face recall elections next year. Wisconsin law specifies that elected officials must serve at least one year of their term before being recalled, which has exempted the governor and almost half of the Senate who were elected in 2010.

The recall is a backlash against Walker's anti-union legislation attached to his budget reform bill. The bill, which is being held up in a court, brought out hundreds of thousands to the Capitol in Madison in protest.

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