“The soaring rotunda of the Wisconsin State Capitol is designed to induce its citizenry to be, as individuals, among the 'resources of Wisconsin.' Whereas some statehouses are maintained apart from the urban fabric, the Wisconsin Capitol Rotunda functions, both literally and symbolically, as a city center and is fully utilized as a public space to which all have claim.” From the United States Department of the Interior, National Park Service, National Historic Landmark Nomination, Wisconsin State Capitol.
Shortly after Scott Walker was determined the winner of recall election, Progressive editor Matt Rothschild interviewed Brian Austin, a Madison Police detective and founder of Cops for Labor, a group of progressive police officers who led resistance to Act 10 that stripped all meaningful collective bargaining rights for public sector workers. In that interview Austin expressed concern about the potential for increased police crackdown on activists and organizers who are redoubling their efforts to defend and speak up for human, labor and women’s rights in the wake of Walker’s apparent victory.
Indeed, the day after the election dozens, of police were deployed to the Capitol. In addition to the Capitol Police, University of Wisconsin Police, State Police and DNR Game Wardens were patrolling the grounds and building. Matt Rothschild described the scene as the Solidarity Sing Along was taking place outside that day.