Just saw this and it burns me up that its against the law to arrest a lawmaker for DWI, doen't surprise me, just pisses me off.
Apr 10, 5:01 PM (ET)
By STEVE KARNOWSKI
(AP) In this April 3, 2014 photo provided by Concordia University, from left: Akolade Gdadamosi;...
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) - A college project that alleged some state lawmakers might have used immunity to avoid drunken-driving arrests has sparked debate in Minnesota over whether to scrap a more than 150-year-old protection similar to those still on the books for Congress and most state legislatures.
At issue is a provision in the Minnesota Constitution from 1858 that was meant to protect legislators against being arrested to prevent them from voting on important measures. The state House voted 115-13 late Wednesday to lift the immunity despite arguments that no change is needed, and a state senator is trying to find a way to bring a similar proposal up for a vote in her chamber.
There is arrest immunity language in the U.S. Constitution and 44 other state constitutions, said Brenda Erickson, senior research analyst with the National Conference of State Legislatures. There have been unsuccessful attempts to repeal the privilege in Arizona, including one drive that began in 2012 when a senator avoided arrest after getting into a fight with his girlfriend on a Phoenix freeway.
The doctrine of legislative immunity dates back to 16th and 17th century England when some monarchs would seek to intimidate legislators with the threat of arrest or prosecution. Federal and state courts have given varying interpretations of how far the protection extends, the conference says.
Minnesota state Sen. Kathy Sheran, D-Mankato, whose version of the immunity bill got bottled up in committee, acknowledged there are only anecdotes - not confirmed evidence - in recent years of lawmakers using immunity as "get out of jail free" cards.
"If the problem is that the general public believes that the card provides unnecessary and extraordinary privilege to elected officials that's beyond what's reasonable, treating them as special in relationship to the general public, then it is a problem," said Sheran, who doesn't carry her immunity card and isn't sure how many colleagues do.
Immunity became an issue in Minnesota two years ago as a project for Jayne Jones' political sciences students at Concordia University in St. Paul. The professor and her students said they became convinced by what they heard from lawmakers and police during their research that some legislators had abused their state-issued immunity cards to get away with driving drunk.http://apnews.excite.com/ar...40410/DAD3GD3O1.html
more at the link and I didn't read it all so if I am wrong about what I said so be it, but if I am WTF is wrong with this country.
Technology is great when it works,
and one big pain in the ass when it doesn't
Detroit iron rules all the rest are just toys.