By Collin Roth
This week, the Milwaukee-based SEIU front-group Wisconsin Jobs Now! turned their sights on Congressman Reid Ribble. In what is becoming an all-too-common tactic, Jobs Now! activated their network of demonstrators to stake out and occupy Congressman Ribble’s district office in Appleton, demanding a meeting with the Congressman. Jobs Now! has used this tactic across Wisconsin with GOP legislators. From State Sen. Alberta Darling, to Rep. Paul Ryan, to Sen. Ron Johnson, and now to Rep. Reid Ribble in Appleton, Jobs Now! occupations are becoming a predictable. They serve up headlines, but never any jobs.
And despite arguing that the organization only had “five paid organizers” in attendance, Wisconsin Jobs Now! is not the grassroots coalition it claims. In 2011, Wisconsin Jobs Now! was funded to the tune of $769,063 by the SEIU’s national office and is part of an SEIU strategy to stir-up class warfare as documented by the Wall Street Journal. The Executive Director of Wisconsin Jobs Now! earns $127,215 per year and lives in Whitefish Bay, an affluent neighborhood of Milwaukee.
But perhaps the greatest irony of all is that Wisconsin Jobs Now! is spending their time protesting a congressman who has actively hosted and promoted job fairs in his district attended by over 2,000 constituents. Just in April, Congressman Ribble hosted a job fair in Green Bay that included 52 local and national employers. In 2011, Ribble hosted jobs fairs in June and October, and Ribble put together a joint job fair with Michigan Rep. Dan Banishek in February 2012.
In what is perhaps surprising to no one, Wisconsin Jobs Now! did not organize volunteers to drive job-seekers to any of these job fairs. Instead, the organization feels they serve the unemployed better by organizing sit-ins and demanding that Ribble vote to raise taxes on the rich. Such is the logic of the left.