Capitol Chaos: Legislative Leaders Call Capitol "Unsafe"
By Tim Lethlean, Jon Byman
Story Created: Mar 10, 2011
Story Updated: Mar 10, 2011
MADISON - State Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald says the situation at the Capitol is "unsafe."
Fitzgerald appeared on Newsradio 620 WTMJ's Wisconsin's Morning News. He's concerned about the ability for business to take place inside the Capitol.
"Law enforcement is doing the best they can, but they're just undermanned," Fitzgerald said.
The State Assembly is scheduled to be in session at 11:00 a.m. Thursday. Fitzgerald says that could be tough under current conditions. "They're (officers) are having a very difficult time cleaning out, not only the assembly wing, but the rotunda is still full of protesters."
Assembly Speaker Jeff Fitzgerald is also urging caution. "I have told my members to not enter the building until we get word that it is safe," Fitzgerald told Newsradio 620 WTMJ.
As to whether Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald is concerned about the safety of legislators and staffers, he's quick to say "Absolutely."
"Senators could not move freely through the building, let alone even get in an elevator last (Wednesday) night to get out of the building," Scott Fitzgerald said.
Even with the chaos, Fitzgerald is appreciative of the efforts of law enforcement, saying "They're doing the best they can, but they're just under-manned."
Protesters forced their way into the Capitol following the senate vote Wednesday night. Fitzgerald says many of those protesters had help getting into the building, claiming "When the Democrat staffers opened the windows for protesters to get in...that's not how democracy is supposed to work."