Recall signature gatherers attacked, signatures stolen

It’s common to hear many on the right refer to union members who dare to exercise their Constitutionally-protected first amendment rights to free speech and assembly as “union thugs” and “goons,” as if the right would never dare resort

On Saturday, March 19, two individuals were gathering signatures in support of the recall effort against Republican State Senator Alberta Darling when one individual found himself the victim of an assault. According to the account that’s been relayed to me, the two individuals were gathering signatures in Sen. Darling’s district when one of the men was approached and sucker-punched by an individual who then fled in his vehicle. Police were called and a report was filed, but it’s not clear at this time if officers were able to identify the attacker.

And in a related story, River Falls police were asked to track down and find a suspect who had made off with a batch of Sen. Sheila Harsdorf recall petition signatures late Sunday afternoon. The suspect pretended he wanted to sign the petition before grabbing the petitions and driving away:

With a vehicular and suspect description, an officer traced the man to his home near the River Falls Area Hospital.

The man seemed indignant that a police officer was at his door and denied being near EconoFoods. Then he said he couldn’t be accused of stealing the petition signatures because he returned them.

When informed of his arrest, he allegedly resisted being handcuffed and began yelling about police brutality. His wife, also home, told her husband to calm down.

The man was later released from police custody after receiving a $177 disorderly conduct fine.


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16 thoughts on “Recall signature gatherers attacked, signatures stolen

  1. This thug just committed a federal offence – violation of civil rights.

    This should be communicated immediately to:

    US Department of Justice
    950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
    Civil Rights Division
    Criminal Section – PHB
    Washington, DC 20530

    Electronically to Milwaukee branch of FBI

    3. Cc to

    Office of the United States Attorney
    Eastern District of Wisconsin
    517 E Wisconsin Avenue, Suite 530
    Milwaukee, WI 53202-4580

    1. What civil right is that?

      Also courts have held that names and addresses are not chattels and thus, does not constitute property that can be stolen. So it looks like d.c. Is all that the guy can be charged with unless you have another theory.

      1. Names and addresses may not constitute property that can be stolen, but I’d argue the paper they’re printed on, as well as a clipboard, are certainly property that can be stolen.

        1. And the paper clips.

          In all seriousness I did a trade secret case a few years ago where the former employee stole all the customer lists when he left. It pissed me off that we could bring claims for theft. But We got him on some other claims

      2. Super ID,

        The First Amendment: “[T]he right to peaceably assemble or prohibiting the petitioning for a governmental redress of grievances.”For starters.

        I urge you to read the Bill of Rights, been around for some time.

  2. As straight a news post as could be… no commentary, no tossing of “thug”, nothing. And Kevin is disappointed that this post didn’t recount something else.

  3. “Kevin, I wasn’t aware of Holperin recall petitioners being physically assaulted.”

    No, they just said they were. And just like with someone dropping off ammo at the City-County Building or sending death threats to WisGOP Senators, or doing millions of dollars of damage to the Capitol, there’s been no other witnesses or arrests. Kinda like this incident…..only the exact opposite!

    Those GOPs say a lot of things, and not a lot of them have come to fruition in the last few weeks, have they? And now those whiners are trying to make up a website to report alleged thuggery against them. What’s the word for someone who dishes it out but is incapable of taking it? Seems to start with a P and end with a Y.

  4. The article says the suspect stated he returned the papers but I don’t see where he actually did. Did they get the signatures back? And they were more than just names and addresses, they were part of a recall effort, is it possible that would make them more valuable? Does anyone know the print at the top of each page?

    1. Theresthatbear,

      “Recall Petition

      To the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board: We the undersigned qualified electors of the [xth] State Senate District of Wisconsin petition for the recall of State Senator [x] from office pursuant to Article XIII, Section 12 of the Wisconsin Constitution and S.9.10 of the Wisconsin Statutes.”

      That this political activity is protected as well in by the federal First Amendment ought to be obvious to Super Id as well.

  5. It seems like a federal case to me. But does anyone know if they got the signatures back?

  6. How do signature gatherers them selves resolve a situation of being told that they need to gather more information than a Secretary of State requires to be legal, and when the information isn’t gathered, such as a date of birth, then the signature is discarded and the signature gatherer is not paid, for that signature? Also how to prove and resolve being told, that the signatures gathered have a lower validity and the signature gatherer will lose pay. This sounds like fraud and wage theft of the signature gatherers wages. Who knows how to investigate and how to prove and get wages that were stolen?

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