This was a representative government. Elected officials were accountable to the people. We once thought we could voice disapproval to our politicians if we felt they acted contrary to the public interest.
The Republican Authority does not tolerate dissent! So what did Republicans learn after millions of Wisconsinites turned out to voice anger and opposition to the legislative direction of our state? For Republican Rep. Garey Bies, he would throw em in prison.
Public complaints aren't enough to make a politician think twice. Lock em up, give em a record, and split up families. Derogatory calls at home, shouting, being chase by angry constituents, repeated act of “intimidation,” bumping…lock em up.
Kevin Wang of the AP reports: “A Wisconsin lawmaker is pushing for tougher laws to deter people who would intimidate or harm members of the Legislature and their families. Under legislation introduced by Rep. Garey Bies, a Republican, acts such as striking, shoving, or kicking a lawmaker or a family member with no legitimate reason would face harsher penalties. Bies said harassment of lawmakers … worsened since Gov. Scott Walker signed a law in 2011 that effectively ended collective bargaining for most public workers.”
Our poor victimized Republican ruling class can’t be bothered by “the people” anymore:
Opponents of that measure "would stand in your face and bump into you," Bies said. "They chased you down the hallway and all the way to the office." Bies said he has personal experience. During that tumultuous period, he said he got enough derogatory calls at home that he got caller ID. The restroom of his restaurant was vandalized twice within two weeks during September 2011, which he attributed to his status as a legislator.
And as everybody knows, restrooms are never vandalized? But according Bies, it must be because he’s an important member of the elite legislative class. I’m getting the feeling our Republican state and federal lawmakers are treating their positions like an exclusive country club membership.
When Republicans rammed their agenda down our throats, some went as far as making threatening calls, which is never a good thing. Those people were investigated and determined to be harmless. But under Bies bill, prison:
Acts that cause a lawmaker or family member's fear of death would be a Class H felony, meaning up to six years in prison.
And for supposed acts of “intimidation,” or lingering near their private property, up to nine months in prison:
Bies' legislation would create a Class A misdemeanor -- punishable by up to nine months in prison -- for acts of repeated intimidation or use of force to influence a lawmaker's action, or for lingering within 100 yards of his or her private property.
Democratic Rep. Lena Taylor lost all my support with her co-sponsorship of this trashing of the constitution. Here’s a list of reason’s Taylor, Bies and Rep. Samantha Kerkman gave for giving up our First Amendment rights:
Offensive emails, postcards, Facebook posts, broken windows at her house, a piece of mail containing human feces, a person threw firecrackers, honk outside the house in the middle of the night, dumping a glass of beer on the head of Assembly Speaker Robin Vos.
By the way, it should be legal to pour cheap beer over Vos’ head. But what about the laws currently on the books, haven’t they worked well so far? Sure, but a police state and a compliant electorate is so much easier to control.