MADISON, Wis. (AP) _ Wisconsin Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen is telling the state Supreme Court that portions of Gov. Scott Walker's union restrictions are constitutional.
The restrictions stripped most public workers of nearly all their collective bargaining rights. A Madison judge ruled last year the provisions are unconstitutional as they apply to school and municipal employees.
The Supreme Court heard oral arguments Monday on whether the ruling was proper. Van Hollen himself appeared before the court. He contended constitutionality isn't an issue because collective bargaining is a benefit granted through state statutes.
He contended union members remain free to associate with one another and can ask their employers for benefits beyond what the restrictions allow.
Union attorneys were expected to make their arguments later Monday afternoon.