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Didn't I See This in Blazing Saddles?

Just obey our hostage demands, and we'll let ourselves go: "AWOL Wisconsin Democrat calls CNN with list of demands."

It's certainly a western theme in any case, hearkening back to the Wild West of ancient yore: "Texas Democrats Flee to Neighboring State to Avoid Redistricting Vote," recalls this 2003 headline.

Also at the intersection of Wisconsin unions and early 1970s comedy movies, this protest sign seems oddly reminiscent of the "I have a gub" scene from Woody Allen's Take the Money and Run: "I AM THE FUTURE I NEEN QUALITY TEACHERS.”

Somebody set up us the debt bomb!

Update: The self-hostages have been found!

Wisconsin state Democrats who refused to show up for a vote on Governor Walker’s budget repair bill have been located.

The lawmakers are in Rockford, Illinois at the Best Western Clock Tower Resort.

Law enforcement officials have been looking for at least one Democratic senator to bring in for a quorum required for a fiscal measure, but Democratic Senator Jon Erpenbach confirmed to Newsradio 620 WTMJ that he and all of his Democratic colleagues boarded a bus and left the state…

According to the Twitter account of Democrat State Senator Chris Larson from Bay View, “For those looking for us, we are right here, standing with the people of Wisconsin.”

To be fair, based on this photo of a waitress at the "Tilted Kilt" restaurant found by Jim Geraghty, there are worse places to hold yourself hostage.

Meanwhile, at the Campaign Spot, Jim writes, "First Cambridge Cops, Now Wisconsin Teacher Contracts:"

It probably shouldn’t surprise us that President Obama begins his comments on the Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s proposals with the words, “I’d say that I haven’t followed exactly what’s happening with the Wisconsin budget,” and then promptly declares that Walker’s plan “seems like more of an assault on unions.”

House Speaker Speaker John Boehner lowers the boom on the president:

“According to news reports, the White House has even unleashed the Democratic National Committee to spread disinformation and confusion in Wisconsin regarding the governor’s courageous actions.  I urge the president to order the DNC to suspend these tactics.  This is not the way you begin an ‘adult conversation’ in America about solutions to the fiscal challenges that are destroying jobs in our country.

But then, why would President Obama choose this moment to start to acting like an adult?

Update: Jay Nordlinger adds:

Couldn’t Obama say something? Couldn’t he pretend he’s president — president of all the people — and say, “We have political disagreements, but we’re going to work them out peacefully and democratically. For example, massing at lawmakers’ homes, to shout and threaten, is out of bounds.”

Wouldn’t that be kind of . . . big of him? But in my observation — and he has been president for two years now — he is small. He was willing to speak out after Tucson. That was relatively easy. To speak out now would be exceptional, and exceptionally helpful. It would be helpful to Obama politically, too.

But why would the same president who told bank CEOs in April of 2009 that “My administration is the only thing between you and the pitchforks,” want to put down the Alinsky playbook now?