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Schimel: Legislative Emails Should Stay Public

AG Says He Takes Vos At His Word Regarding Open Records Changes

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Image courtesy of Wisconsin Public Television.

Attorney General Brad Schimel says that emails from constituents to legislators should be subject to the state’s open records laws.

Schimel spoke out strongly in July against a Republican effort to insert language in the budget that would make many legislative documents secret. The language was removed. But last month Assembly Speaker Robin Vos asked for a bill to be drafted that would allow the Legislature to set its own secrecy standards for legislative communications.

Speaking at a Wispolitics.com luncheon Thursday, Schimel said he’s convinced those plans are on the back burner.

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“Earlier this week Rep. Vos said that he doesn’t have any plans to make any changes now so I’m a little concerned about addressing a legislative change in a hypothetical format because I don’t know what they might be thinking and I take him at his word that he’s not doing anything with it right now,” said Schimel.

But he said he believes outside communications to legislators including emails should remain public.

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