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Assembly Speaker Fitzgerald denies redistricting comments order


MADISON, WI (WTAQ) - State Assembly Speaker Jeff Fitzgerald denies that he told his fellow Republicans to ignore what he was telling the public about the GOP’s redistricting plan last year.

According to newly-released court records, a Fitzgerald aide told members that public comments about the new maps may be different than what they heard in the room where the maps were drafted. And the memo said, “ignore the public comments.”

Assembly GOP Finance chair Robin Vos said Wednesday that the memo was created for him. It included talking points for meetings he had with individual Assembly members last June and July.

Vos said he just told GOP colleagues not to listen to what Democrats were saying about the re-districting issue. And Vos claimed he did not know why the memo was written the way it was.

Peter Earle, an attorney for those filing suit against the new legislative districts, said the memo makes it clear that the GOP meant to say one thing in public and another thing in private.

Fitzgerald responded, “They’re interpreting it wrong.”

Democrats and Hispanics have filed suit over the new legislative and congressional districts, accusing Republicans of making it easier for them to win elections – and to shortchange Hispanic representation in the Legislature.

A trial in that case is set to begin February 21st before a three-judge federal court panel in Milwaukee.