Assault on Workers Spreads to 17 States; 20K Expected for Saturday American Dream Rallies; WI State Cops Camp Out to Stop Crack-Down

Some updates...

Via Twitter, Mike Elk reports that the local police union is urging off-duty cops to sleep in the Wisconsin Capitol tonight to prevent a late-night crackdown on the protesters who arev occupying the state house for the 9th straight day. 

Yesterday, the Indiana legislature pulled its union-busting bill off the floor and sent it to a committee for further study. Today, public employees scored another victory, according to the New York Times:

In Ohio, Republican lawmakers agreed to modify a bill that would have banned collective bargaining, allowing state workers to negotiate on wages. Michigan's GOP governor offered to negotiate with public employees rather than create political gridlock. Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels (R) called on GOP lawmakers to abandon their "right to work" bill that would have made it a misdemeanor for an employer to require workers to become or remain members of a labor union.

A source at tells AlterNet that they expect more than 20,000 people to participate in the nationwide “Save the American Dream” rallies tomorrow. They say they haven't seen this sort of mobilization of the progressive movement since the height of the anti-war protests leading up to the invasion of Iraq. I have details of those rallies, and the US Uncut actions also planned for tomorrow, over on the front page.

Finally, Bloomberg reports:

In 17 states, government employees are the subjects of efforts to restrict their union rights and curb earnings, said Steven Kreisberg, collective bargaining director of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees. Measures are pending to limit negotiations, impose unpaid time off and cut pay, he said in a telephone interview from Washington. Bills to restrict collective bargaining are under consideration in Wisconsin, Ohio, MichiganTennessee andIdaho, he said.

Fight back this weekend. In addition to the Rally to Save the American Dream and US Uncut, labor organizers are mounting solidarity protests in 24 states. 

AlterNet / By Joshua Holland

Posted at February 25, 2011, 10:08am

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