Take those polls showing solid public support for collective bargaining with a grain of salt. Ask most anyone how they feel about some nice-sounding union benefit in the abstract, and of course they’ll say they support it. It’s squishy support for squishy issues Everybody likes to give nice things to other nice people, so long a it doesn’t cost them anything.
But ask people very specifically if they support the concrete things created by public union bargaining — health insurance plans and retirement plans they’ll enjoy — and their support fades pretty quickly. Even the New York Times story admits public support fades fast — but they sure don’t put that in the headline. In fact, they save it for the fifth graf.
Governor Walker seems to understand the public mood, and is behaving accordingly.