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Wisconsin's U.S. Senators on opposite sides of UN disability treaty vote

Ron Johnson
Sen. Herb Kohl (D-WI)
Ron Johnson

WASHINGTON D.C. (WTAQ) - Wisconsin’s two U.S. senators were on opposing sides, when their colleagues failed to ratify a United Nations treaty to protect the rights of those with disabilities.

Republican Ron Johnson voted against the treaty Tuesday. Democrat Herb Kohl was among 61 senators voting yes – but it was not enough for the required two-thirds majority.

Tom Masseau of Disability Rights Wisconsin said it was disappointing that advocates could not round up enough votes to ratify the treaty. He said it previously had the support of Republicans like Bob Dole and former President George Herbert Walker Bush.

The treaty was first drafted in 2006. It encourages other nations to adopt American standards for disability rights. But some conservatives believe it would let UN violate the rights of parents with disabled children.