November 22, 2014

Union leader arrested at Capitol protest

A top union official joins the growing list of those arrested during the Solidarity Singalong at the Wisconsin state Capitol.

Shortly after the noon-hour protest started in the rotunda Wednesday, Capitol Police arrested Wisconsin State Employees Union Executive Director Marty Beil, leading him away in hand cuffs. Beil heads one of the state’s largest public employee unions and has been a vocal critic of Governor Scott Walker and Republicans lawmakers over changes made to collective bargaining rules two years ago.

Police have arrested more than 300 people since July 24th during the almost-daily protest. Officials say the gathering violates a state policy that requires events with more than 20 people to obtain a permit. Protesters argue the rules violate their First Amendment rights.

The state Department of Administration did not return messages seeking comment on why Beil was arrested.