Letter: Back to school: Our governor needs remedial constitution classLast week Dane County Judge Juan Colas ruled that parts of Act 10 (the bill restricting virtually all bargaining rights for most public employee unions) were unconstitutional.
By: Ramona Gunter, town of River Falls, River Falls Journal
Last week Dane County Judge Juan Colas ruled that parts of Act 10 (the bill restricting virtually all bargaining rights for most public employee unions) were unconstitutional.
Gov. Walker responded by calling Colas a “liberal activist judge.”
He belittled Colas by refusing to address the merits of the decision, and casting it as an attempt to “take away the lawmaking responsibilities of the Legislature and the governor.”
In a fundraising email, Walker states that Colas “imposed his personal political beliefs on all of us ... Sadly, this is what liberals do when they can’t win at the ballot box — they legislate from the bench to achieve their goals.”
It appears Walker doesn’t respect the checks and balances built into our system via the judicial, executive, and legislative branches.
These branches are intended to ensure that no one branch has more power than another. Laws passed by the legislative branch are not supposed to be done deals. Courts are allowed to overturn them.
Yet it appears that Walker believes that there are to be no checks on the (Republican-controlled) legislative branch.
The judicial branch is supposed to serve as a check on the legislative branch. One of its roles is to ensure that laws written by the legislature and signed by the Governor are congruent with the constitution.
The governor’s response to the Colas decision is ignorant, arrogant or childish.
Ignorant, if he believes that laws passed by the legislature are supposed to be unchecked by the judicial branch.
Arrogant, if he believes these laws are beyond reproach — never at odds with the constitution and requiring no checks.
Childish, if he believes calling the judge names, and claiming that like all “liberals” the judge simply used the bench to achieve his political goals, is the way to respond to the ruling.