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Tuesday, May 17, 2011

 12:09 PM 

Brouhaha erupts over removal of people from gallery

A handful of people have been removed from the Senate gallery, although there was no sign of protest.

The individuals were apparently seated in the area above the press seating area. Protesters were also removed from the chamber during a session last week.

Sen. Jon Erpenbach stood to ask why the people were being removed.

"There haven't been any protests," Erpenbach, D-Waunakee, said.

Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald said the actions were preceded by conversations with Capitol Police, some going back all the way to February. Fitzgerald, R-Juneau, said there have been "a number of circumstances" of individuals involved with law enforcement for actions in the building.

"It is a law enforcement decision made by law enforcement," Fitzgerald said.

Senate President Mike Ellis angrily told Erpenbach, "It is my job to prevent what happened in here last week from happening again."

He said he did not direct the removal of the individuals, and would find out why they were taken from the gallery after the session.

"A handful of people are not going to deny 5.5 million their constitutional right to have a deliberative body not be interrupted," Ellis said.


Comments: 1

At May 17, 2011 at 12:46 PM, Blogger O'Reilly said...

This makes no sense. You'd think they'd screen people at the entrance for prior issues, and you'd think it would be apparent to everyone present if someone should be removed from the gallery for violating gallery rules. If you can't see them violating rules, then they shouldn't be removed.

Let's face it. The GOP is trying to pass very unpopular laws including laws that deprive voters of their right to vote. They don't want the public heard while the public shames the GOP for voting in favor of these partisan laws.

 

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