Business LawBusiness Litigation

Update on Law-Suit over “Paid Sick Leave” in Milwaukee

The latest news I have seen comes from a Wisconsin Law Journal Article on Tuesday stating that the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce’s (MMAC) directors unanimously chose to sue the city of Milwaukee to stop the sick-leave ordinance from taking effect. You can see the article here.

I am very interested to see what the complaint states, as well as how the city responds. Apparently the organization 9to5, which is a branch of the National Association of Working Women, is prepared to file an amicus briefs to support the city in a lawsuit. (An amicus brief is a brief that a third party can submit in support of a party in the action).

I try my best to stay very politically neutral in these posts, but I want to address one portion of this argument. In the above mentioned article is the following

Amy Stear, 9to5 Wiscsonin Director said the MMAC’s decision disregards Milwaukee residents who voted 130,562 to 60,796 Nov. 4 to approve the ordinance in binding referendum.

“Essentially,” Stear said, “they’re saying that they don’t care what’s important to us.”

Regardless of the merits one way or the other of the referendum, basically saying that it is right because the majority wants it, is a very weak argument. Throughout the history of this country there have been some very bad ideas that are held by the majority. As recently as fifty years ago there were portions of the this country where the majority felt that blacks should not be able to vote.

I am in no means saying this is the same situation, but “majority is right” in my mind is a very bad argument. If the referendum had said, “Everyone in Milwaukee gets $10,000” I am sure it would have passed, but it would not have made it legal, or a good idea.

The final piece of information I would love to get my hands on, is what percentage of Business Owners in Milwaukee, live in the city of Milwaukee. I have a feeling that an overwhelming majority of the people that this referendum adversely affects, business owners, were not even able to voice their opinion on the matter as they did not get to vote on the referendum.

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