Sunday, March 29, 2015

Church Lobbyists

While I didn't follow former Representative Carl Wimmer around in 2011, and in fact voted differently than him on several bills, his blogged experiences differ widely to mine re: Church Lobbyists, etc. in 2011.

I posted this several years ago.

This year, Mr. Wimmer was not involved in the legislature, and his assumptions, as far as I am concerned with 2015 SB 296 and SB 297 are nothing more than that, assumptions, and are also rubbish as far as I am aware.

I have made Facebook comments last week re: this subject. My comments from this thread are below:

Fred C. Cox, March 22, 2015

In 3 general sessions and several special sessions I would say my experience would not match what Carl described. No one from the Church has told me how to vote. For starters I haven't talked to the two he mentioned. I was there in 2011. I loudly complained about a newsroom press release in April 2011 re immigration which was revised in June. Nothing during the session. This year, I started reading SB 100 again for the 3rd year. I have posted major amendments on my blog for over 2 years. I was surprised my complaints were fixed. That was prior to any announcement from the church in January.

I have contacted reps from the church to verify what I was hearing was crap, which it typically was. For example some claiming Healthy Utah was backed by them. I was referred to a pretty generic statement.

 "Elected officials who are Latter-day Saints make their own decisions and may not necessarily be in agreement with one another or even with a publicly stated Church position. While the Church may communicate its views to them, as it may to any other elected official, it recognizes that these officials still must make their own choices based on their best judgment and with consideration of the constituencies whom they were elected to represent."

The two he named are no longer lobbyists.

I copied it not because of some lobbyist, but because of some local member of the church giving a representative or senator grief for voting against SB 296.

 I voted for SB 296 because of changes that were made to a bill I had been reading for years. The protection of rights on page 23 are huge. The idea that we need a law so people would respect others that believe differently is sad. There is a reason a few activists are concerned it might be replicated. They are so used to calling anyone that disagrees with their view a bigot that the idea we should love others that believe differently is scary to them.

If there was anyone that could have been targeted, would have it been the House Judiciary Committee? I am not aware of any report of anyone on that committee or another in the #utleg that complained about backroom arm twisting on SB 296 coming from the church.

And since I am on the house judiciary committee that vetted SB 296, I would likely have seen something.

Someone asked if there was a LDS caucus. Not that I have ever seen.

I was not following Carl around. I don't know what he saw and didn't. All anyone can report on is what they know. My experience doesn't match. I will not call him a liar. I do not agree with some of his conclusions. People have the right to disagree.

Try reading lines 687 to 691. And while you are there, continue to lines 706.

Lines 182 and 183, along with 790 to 791.

You are trying to put words in my mouth. You conclusion based on what I did say wasn't even close. Assumptions made re: this year, are just that.

So why in 2011, when I voted against HB116 and also spoke against it did I get no contact during the session? Speculation is all that is found here.

The amount of crap being shoveled on this thread would make a lot of fertilizer.