Protesters leave Capitol after 17 days of protests - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Protesters leave Capitol after 17 days of protests

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Pro-union protesters have vacated the Wisconsin Capitol on the 17th day of round-the-clock demonstrations after a judge ordered the building closed at night.

About 50 protesters left the building peacefully Thursday night about two hours after a judge ruled the state had unconstitutionally restricted building to the access. But the ruling also said the protesters had to leave Thursday night.

That led to a sometimes tense two hours as police and the attorney who represented the unions who fought the policy to restrict access to the building urged them to leave peacefully.

Police have not said whether there were stragglers but said there have been no arrests.

The protesters have been demonstating against Republican-backed legislation that would strip most public employees of most of their collective bargaining rights.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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