jsonline-Jason Stein: A portion of a law giving Gov. Scott Walker veto powers over rules written by the state schools superintendent was struck down Tuesday by a Dane County judge.
Parents of students and members of the Wisconsin Education Association Council and Madison Teachers Inc. challenged the law giving Walker the power to veto administrative rules written by any state agency. In the decision issued Tuesday, Circuit Judge Amy Smith ruled that the law violated the state constitution by giving Walker that power over the state Department of Public Instruction, which is headed by state schools Superintendent Tony Evers. The constitution says that "the supervision of public instruction shall be vested in a state superintendent … In a 1996 decision the state Supreme Court held that lawmakers and the governor cannot give "equal or superior authority" over public education to any other official. "Because Act 21 allows the governor to bar the superintendent from proposing rules or from even beginning the process of rule making … Act 21 places the governor in a position superior to the superintendent in the supervision of public instruction," Smith wrote in her decision.
It should be noted how hard it is for Republicans to work within the constitution, or any set of rules developed by past governments:
The decision is just the latest by a judge in Dane County striking down parts of legislation passed by Walker and the Republican Legislature, including laws severely limiting collective bargaining for public employees and requiring voters to show photo ID at the polls. Those lawsuits are continuing on appeal and this latest decision will likely be appealed as well, with Department of Justice spokeswoman Dana Brueck saying Tuesday that attorneys are reviewing it.