WED FEB 23, 2011 AT 12:08 PM EST
Scott Walker's conversation with 'David Koch'
Well, now we know what a $43,000 donation to Republican Governor Scott Walker will buy you. For David Koch, one half of the billionaire Koch brothers, easy access and a 20-minute phone call to discuss Walker's current union-busting attempts. Unfortunately for Walker, it really wasn't Koch, it was Ian Murphy of the Buffalo Beast, who wondered:
... who could get through to Gov. Walker? Well, what do we know about Walker and his proposed union-busting, no-bid budget? The obvious candidate was David Koch.
... and posing as Koch, Murphy easily got the embattled Governor on the phone.
Walker's office has confirmed that the call did occur, but says that it only "shows that the Governor says the same thing in private as he does in public."
Except of course Walker has never publicly said that he was considering planting agitators into the crowds of protesters:
Koch: We’ll back you any way we can. What we were thinking about the crowd was, uh, was planting some troublemakers.
Walker: You know, well, the only problem with that —because we thought about that. The problem—the, my only gut reaction to that is right now the lawmakers I’ve talked to have just completely had it with them, the public is not really fond of this ... My only fear would be if there’s a ruckus caused is that maybe the governor has to settle to solve all these problems … Let ‘em protest all they want…Sooner or later the media stops finding it interesting.
And Walker has never publicly announced the plan to trick fourteen Democratic Senators into giving him the needed quorum to pass his union-busting bill:
An interesting idea that was brought up to me by my chief of staff, we won't do it until tomorrow, is putting out an appeal to the Democratic leader. I would be willing to sit down and talk to him, the assembly Democrat leader, plus the other two Republican leaders—talk, not negotiate and listen to what they have to say if they will in turn—but I’ll only do it if all 14 of them will come back and sit down in the state assembly. They can recess it... the reason for that, we're verifying it this afternoon, legally, we believe, once they’ve gone into session, they don’t physically have to be there. If they’re actually in session for that day, and they take a recess, the 19 Senate Republicans could then go into action and they’d have quorum because it's turned out that way. So we’re double checking that. If you heard I was going to talk to them that’s the only reason why. We’d only do it if they came back to the capitol with all 14 of them. My sense is, hell. I'll talk. If they want to yell at me for an hour, I'm used to that. I can deal with that. But I'm not negotiating.
Nor has Walker publicly talked about the baseball bat he'd like to bring to such a meeting, or how much he's looking forward to a payoff when he succeeds in crushing the unions:
Koch: Well, I tell you what, Scott: once you crush these bastards I’ll fly you out to Cali and really show you a good time.
Walker: All right, that would be outstanding. Thanks for all the support…it’s all about getting our freedoms back…
And apparently for Scott Walker, "freedom" is defined as doing the bidding of his corporate overlords, because he's certainly not listening to the people of Wisconsin.
For more discussion, see Lauren Monica's diary.