Sunday, March 13, 2011—Hudson, Wis.–TedF photogs–click to enlarge
Candace Lund, MN AFL-CIO ‘Zing Director
Mark Froemke and I wheeled into the Park and Ride lot near the bridge over I-94 in Hudson, Wis. a little after 3 p.m. A visibility picket was just winding down and Candace Lund, Minnesota AFL-CIO Mobilizing and Organizing Director was busy wrapping things up.
Candace, a women with a lot of ‘zing in her title who puts a lot of zing into her job, told us the picketers encountered “Even greater reception than the first few Hudson rallies.” That was not surprising since the polls had not been kind to Wis. Gov. Walker or his Republican allies in the legislature in regards to their views on collective bargaining and Walker’s association with the Koch Brothers; more specifically his now infamous phone call from “Koch.”
The visibility picket message was mainly on the recall to keep people stirred up about Walker, but more importantly, to aid in the recall efforts on Republican Senator Sheila Harsdorf. Harsdorf’s district includes Hudson, bucks right up to the Minnesota border, and requires 15,744 petition signatures in order to recall her. A goal that was not too lofty, Candace told Jerry Ockerenfels, Froemke and me.
Ockerenfels is the Financial Secretary/Business Agent for the Bakery, Confectionary and Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers Union Local 22.
Mark Froemke and Jerry Ockenfels—both members of the BCTGM—converse with ‘Zing Director Candace Lund.
“Last week, a Koch Brothers-funded bus was traveling around the state trying to drum up tea partiers to support Walker and Harsdorf,” Candace said chuckling. “As it turned out, there were only a few people on the bus, but about 50 people and Republican Senator Harsdorf showed up at the Best Western in Hudson. There were about 500 union members there at this event and we ended up getting several hundred signatures on a recall Hardsdorf petition.”
Over by the bridge, three members of the National Air Traffic Controller Association (Local ZMP out of Farmington, Minn.) were still picketing so I went up there to talk to them. It was fitting that these activists were helping out our Wisconsin labor neighbors. Not too long ago, Ronald Reagan was busting unions and firing the PATCO boys.
Ethan Piche,Craig Boehne and Larry Nuorala are members of NATCA Local ZMP. The three union brothers picketed at a rally in Hudson, Wis. last Sunday.
Wisconsin Democratic State Senator Tim Carpenter said at Saturday’s rally in Madison, “I would never quote Ronald Reagan, but Reagan once said, ‘Where free unions and collective bargaining are forbidden, freedom is lost.’”
It was also fitting that Mark and I ended our rallying for this trip in the first working family class warfare zone that we started in—the bridge over I-94 in Hudson.