Opposite Message Expressed across the Street
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At noon today a crowd that filled the steps of the capital from top to bottom chanted in unison “We are one!” to show solidarity with Wisconsin’s unionized public employees.
At the same time in Wisconsin, unions, Republican Gov. Scott Walker, and the legislative assembly remained gridlocked on negotiations over a “right to work” bill that would allow employees to opt out of paying union dues in a unionized workplace. Media reports said that about 70,000 protesters gathered in the Wisconsin Capital Feb. 20.
“This Saturday we’re drawing a line in the sand. We’re putting everything we’ve got into one massive display of progressive solidarity nationwide,” indicated an email by Keystone Progress, organizer of Harrisburg’s event.
One speaker noted that Gov. Tom Corbett has said he would sign similar legislation if it was sent to him by the legislature. Such laws are in effect in 22 states.
Events were planned for major cities nationwide. Text messages received today by local attendees from ralliers in Philadelphia indicated that crowd may have been in the thousands in downtown Love Park.
About 30-40 people, with a different message gather across the street on the corner of Third and State Sts. Generally, their message of the day was that union collective bargaining hurts taxpayers.