UPDATE 6/16: The snitch house bill is likely to pass the legislature today. Please join the action to demand governor Evers veto it.
UPDATE 6/11: Yesterday the Joint Finance Committee put $1 million into the budget for snitch houses. The full assembly will vote on slew of bills on Wednesday June 16, including this and other fake police reforms. Please contact assembly representatives (listed below) before then to demand they vote against any bill that will expand police funding or scope of work.
Here at ABOLISHmke, we’ve put a lot of attention on the snitch house (AB258) bill (also known as COP house) ever since it passed the senate with unanimous support. Well, that attention is starting to register victories. On June 2nd the Committee on Local Government held an executive session on it, and every democratic representative voted against it. Despite this, it still passed the committee — republicans dominate the legislature in Wisconsin.
The next hurdle for this bill is a general vote in the assembly. After the senate passed the bill unanimously, we need to work to make sure that many, if not all, assembly democrats vote against this bill. Unfortunately, we can assume that rep. Sylvia Ortiz-Velez won’t vote with us, because she is the only democrat credited with introducing the bill. In doing so, she’s collaborating with republican representatives Janel Brandtjen and John Spiros (who both represent districts gerrymandered to crack Sussex and Wassau, respectively) and David Armstrong (who’s district doesn’t even include a city large enough to qualify for this grant).
Most of the people who are going to vote in favor of this bill don’t even represent districts with cities of over 30,000 people, which is the grant threshold. In fact, only half of the republicans who were allowed to vote on this committee represent districts with cites that would qualify— Rick Gundrum (parts of West Bend), Ken Skowronski (Franklin), John Macco (parts of Green Bay). There is something inherently wrong with a system that would allow for everyone representing Milwaukee to vote against a bill that would then pass and be forced onto the city of Milwaukee.
Below is a list of every democratic representative in the state assembly. Baldeh, Conley & Spreitzer already voted against this bill in committee, I strongly encourage you to email them and thank them for voting against it. Then call on them to talk with their democratic counterparts in the assembly about why voting no is the right choice.
Oftentimes people only email their direct representative, however we are recommending a more full-scale approach on this issue. Email everyone who represents any part of your city; anyone whose name you recognize; anyone who represents a city you like to visit; anyone who represents the city you grew up in or near. Or just pick someone with a funny name (looking at you, Snodgrass…)
Some of these representatives likely won’t have heard the public opposition to this trash bill, so please share our articles, as well as your personal thoughts and concerns. Rep Mark Spreitzer specifically cited public opposition to this bill being the reason he voted against it.
You can also reach out to your senator and demand that they release a statement expressing regret for their vote in favor and make sure it is sent to the governor’s office, noting that he should veto the bill when it gets to his desk.
Working together, we took a bill that had unanimous support in the senate and turned all the democrats on the committee on local government against it. We can do it again. If we sow dissent in the assembly, and convince senators to recant their votes, we will see this harmful, police-expansionist bill vetoed!
Feel free to use this template — it is versatile so you can send it to your representative (find them online if you’re not sure which one is yours) or to an assembly member who doesn’t represent you. Alternatively: pick a name at random and write your own! Have fun with it — be heard, let them know you say no!
Wisconsin’s 38 assembly democrats
Rep. Jimmy Anderson (D – Fitchburg)
Rep. Deb Andraca (D – Whitefish Bay)
Rep. Samba Baldeh (D – Madison) — Voted AGAINST at Committee vote!
Rep. Jill Billings (D – LaCrosse)
Rep. David Bowen (D – Milwaukee)
Rep. Jonathan Brostoff (D – Milwaukee)
Rep. Marisabel Cabrera (D – Milwaukee)
Rep. Sue Conley (D – Janesville) — Voted AGAINST at Committee vote!
Rep. Dave Considine (D – Baraboo)
Rep. Steve Doyle (D – Onalaska)
Rep. Dora Drake (D – Milwaukee)
Rep. Jodi Emerson (D – Eau Claire)
Rep. Evan Goyke (D – Milwaukee)
Rep. Kalan Haywood (D – Milwaukee)
Minority Caucus Sergeant At Arms
Rep. Gary Hebl (D – Sun Prairie)
Rep. Dianne Hesselbein (D – Middleton)
Assistant Minority Leader
Rep. Gordon Hintz (D – Oshkosh)
Rep. Francesa Hong (D – Madison)
Rep. Tip McGuire (D – Kenosha)
Rep. Beth Meyers (D – Bayfield)
Minority Caucus Secretary
Rep. Nick Milroy (D – South Range)
Rep. Supreme Moore-Omokunde (D – Milwaukee)
Rep. LaKeshia Myers (D – Milwaukee)
Rep. Greta Neubauer (D – Racine)
Rep. Tod Ohnstad (D – Kenosha)
Rep. Sylvia Ortiz-Velez (D – Milwaukee) — Only democrat to introduce this trash bill, alongside 3 pro-cop republican representatives. Probably won’t vote against.
Rep. Sondy Pope (D – Mt. Horeb)
Rep. Daniel Riemer (D – Milwaukee)
Rep. Sara Rodriguez (D – Brookfield)
Rep. Katrina Shankland (D – Stevens Point)
Rep. Kristina Shelton (D – Green Bay)
Rep. Christina Sinicki (D – Milwaukee)
Rep. Lee Snodgrass (D – Appleton)
Rep. Mark Spreitzer (D – Beloit) — Voted AGAINST at Committee vote!
Minority Caucus Chair
Rep. Shelia Stubbs (D – Madison)
Rep. Lisa Subeck (D – Madison)
Minority Caucus Vice-Chair
Rep. Robyn Vining (D – Wauwatosa)
Rep. Don Vruwink (D – Milton)