Washington state lawmakers say BLM group criticism is tactic to ‘intimidate or bully legislators’

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Three state representatives rebuked ethics complaints filed towards them final week by the Washington Black Lives Matter Alliance that claimed the lawmakers made “offensively inappropriate feedback” towards folks of coloration at public hearings within the Legislature.

The complaints had been towards Republican lawmakers Rep. Brad Klippert, R-Kennewick, Rep. Jenny Graham, R-Spokane, and Rep. Jim Walsh, R-Aberdeen.

The representatives mentioned in a joint assertion Wednesday: “It’s our proper and accountability as elected lawmakers to ask — and reply — robust questions as we try to find out information when debating future coverage adjustments. We is not going to be intimidated or deterred by this partisan criticism.

“Legislative committee hearings, that are open to the general public, supply an essential discussion board for the change of concepts and are essential to the legislative processes.

“Partisan efforts to intimidate or bully legislators into silence set a harmful course towards limiting political speech within the very enviornment the place it needs to be protected most: the Legislature.”

The alliance claimed the questions and remarks directed at these testifying on police accountability laws violated the Legislative Code of Conduct.

The state Legislative Ethics Board has not but indicated whether or not it is going to take motion concerning the complaints.