Overnight Vote Irks 'Local' Wis. Senators

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    NEWSLETTERS

    As the Wisconsin Assembly early Friday morning passed Gov. Scott Walker's controversial budget bill in a surprise vote, Senate Democrats on the lam in Illinois dug in their heels.

    As the Wisconsin Assembly early Friday morning passed Gov. Scott Walker's controversial budget bill in a surprise vote, Senate Democrats on the lam in Illinois dug in their heels.

    Sen. Jon Erpenbach and the other 13 senators still scattered in Illinois hotels say they're not returning to Wisconsin until a compromise is on the table -- now more than ever.

    After three days of debate, the assembly passed the measure that would strip collective bargaining rights from most public workers before Democrats knew what was happening.

    The legislators passed the bill within seconds. After it was over, Republicans walked off the floors to uproarious shouts of "shame" from caught-off-guard Democrats pointing fingers.

    Wisconsin Senator Reacts to Vote

    [CHI] Wisconsin Senator Reacts to Vote
    Jon Erpenbach talks about what happened overnight in Madison.

    Walker said the longer the 14 senators stay away, the harder it will be on the state.

    But Erpenbach and the group aren't budging.

    "We're here for a reason," Erpenbach told NBC Chicago Thursday at his Chicago discount hotel room. "That reason is we believe what the governor is doing is wrong."