Conservatives Violate Election Law To Prove Point

By: Zac Schultz Email
By: Zac Schultz Email

Posted Monday, April 3, 2011 -- 5:23pm
By Zac Schultz
Twitter @zschultz15

Madison: After seven weeks of protests it's become commonplace to see signs promoting unions or opposing Governor Walker all over downtown Madison.

But the signs on the City County Building should not be there and that has conservatives Dave Blaska and Dorothy Borchardt forming their own protest.

"They've had political signs up here for the whole month now, three weeks at least. So they can have a political sign up here for 10 minutes," said Blaska as he walked into the CCB carrying a Scott Walker for Governor sign.

Blaska is a former County Board Supervisor and Borchardt served on the Madison Common Council.

They say they've been asking the Mayor, the City Attorney and the Police Chief to have political signs taken down for weeks, but only got a response Monday morning after announcing their protest.

"We knew the minute we put our signs up that rule would be enforced," said Borchardt.

AWith absentee voters at the Clerk's office, the CCB is a polling place, meaning the campaign signs violate election law. A poll worker came out and told the group to take their signs 100 feet from the building.

"This is a polling place," argued one city worker, in response to the protest. "This is where people physically walk in a vote. So you really upped the ante."

"This is an overreaction and we know it but we're doing it because it's the only way we can get anyone's attention to get those illegal signs down from that building and from these offices," said Borchardt.

Eventually the campaign signs came down, but other political signs went up, even at the offices of the Mayor and County Executive.

Soon pro-union protesters were outside as well, having marched over from the Capitol.

"Adding additional signs is not appropriate," says Paul Rusk, a county supervisor and a member of the Liaison Committee that oversees signage and political activity in the building. He agrees all the signs should come down. "Although I do agree with the sentiment of what's in the windows it doesn't belong there. The City County Building is a government building. It's supposed to be non-partisan."

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