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Tyranny In Wisconsin

Monday, March 18, 2002

On Tuesday, March 12, the two Democrats who rule the Wisconsin State Senate with iron fists abused and ignored their own Senate rules in order to single-handedly block a Right to Carry bill from receiving a full and fair vote by the citizens’ elected officials on the Senate floor. In most places, this would be called tyranny. The local press called it "arbitrary enforcement of the rules."

After the Personal Protection Act, AB 675, had passed the Assembly Criminal Justice Committee on a vote of 10-4, the full Assembly on a vote of 58-40, and then the Senate Judiciary Committee on a vote of 4-1, anti-gun Senate President Fred Risser (D-26) and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Chvala (D-16) were running scared. They were convinced the Right to Carry bill had the necessary support to make it to the Governor’s desk.

Risser and Chvala claimed motions by pro-gun Senators for a full and fair vote were out of order because they violated "rules of Senate decorum." These rules, however, pertain to wearing proper attire and not smoking or reading newspapers while in the Senate chamber. Of course, none of those rules were violated. But Risser and Chvala played judge, jury and executioner, leaving no recourse available to proponents of Right to Carry.

Senate President Risser claimed throughout the proceedings that he did not hear the "objections" that were literally yelled by a number of Senators on many occasions. Majority Leader Chvala refused to answer questions asked of him by his fellow Senators.

In the end, the Senate President and Majority Leader silenced the voices of the hundreds of citizens who showed their support for Right to Carry by attending the three committee meetings on this legislation that were held this year. Because of the actions of these two anti-gun senators, Wisconsin’s law-abiding gun owners will go without the freedom to choose their means of self-protection for another year.

If you would like to hear for yourself what happened on the Senate floor on Tuesday night, you can call (608) 261-0533 for a six-minute summary recording. You can also access the recording through the home page of Senator Dave Zien (R-23), the Senate sponsor of the bill. To receive Right to Carry updates from Senator Zien, use the "contact me" tool to send his office your contact information.

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Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.