Hundreds march around issue of unions

iWitness photo

February 26, 2011 4:24:35 PM PST
Hundreds of people gathered in downtown Raleigh Saturday to march for and against union collective bargaining rights.Before the scheduled noon start of the rally, signs and sounds helped demonstrators stake out positions, pro and con.

"I don't believe that the government should have to pay for the unions," said Vickie Lee, a supporter of the Wisconsin Governor. "I don't think we should have to worry about it. I think they should be a right to work state."

In Wisconsin, public sector workers continue their protest against a bill to strip them of their right to collective bargaining.

Gov. Scott Walker has threatened to lay off 12,000 of those workers if the bill does not pass.

"Sounds pretty terrible," said Danielle Passingham, an N.C. State employee's wife. "My husband's a state worker. I can't imagine if we were in that situation. It's not ideal. Hopefully he can find another way to resolve the issues."

When asked about those Wisconsin job losses, Lee said, "What about the Democrats who passed all these budgets and stuff that they didn't worry about, and now all of a sudden they've got so much money they don't know what they can do? What about that?"

Organizers of the support rally defended the Wisconsin demonstrators, and they want support from Governor Perdue as she wrestles with this state's fiscal challenges.

She was out of town Saturday, but both sides are hoping she hears them loud and clear when she gets back.

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