Archive for Friday, April 22, 2011

Democrats want Kansas House to formally condemn Rep. Virgil Peck’s controversial immigration remarks

April 22, 2011, 12:36 p.m. Updated April 22, 2011, 2:53 p.m.


Rep. Virgil Peck makes comment about using hunters in helicopters to battle illegal immigration

State Rep. Virgil Peck, R-Tyro, said Monday it might be a good idea to control illegal immigration the way the feral hog population has been controlled -- with hunters shooting from helicopters. He later said he was just joking, but that his comment did reflect frustration with the problem of illegal immigration.

State Rep. Mario Goico accepts Rep. Virgil Peck's apology for offensive comments

State Rep. Mario Goico, R-Wichita, said Friday, March 18, that comments made Monday by state Rep. Virgil Peck, R-Tyro, comparing illegal immigrants to feral hogs were wrong, but that he accepts his apology. Enlarge video

Hispanic groups criticize Rep. Peck's comments about illegal immigrants

Florentino Camacho, a former state director of the League of United Latin American Citizens, tells a member of Gov. Sam Brownback's staff that he fears state Rep. Virgil Peck's comments about immigrants will incite violence. Hispanic advocates delivered petitions calling for Peck's ouster in response to the Tyro Republican's comment about shooting illegal immigrants.

— Democrats in the Kansas House plan to push the chamber to formally condemn a Republican member's remark likening illegal immigrants to "feral hogs" that should be shot as a way to reduce their numbers, according to a draft resolution obtained Friday by The Associated Press.

Six House members, led by Minority Leader Paul Davis, have drafted the resolution condemning the remark last month by Rep. Virgil Peck, a Tyro Republican. The Democrats plan to introduce it next week, when the Legislature reconvenes to wrap up its business for the year.

"Although Representative Peck has the right to free speech and this Legislature stands in full support of that right, that right does not include the advocacy of gratuitous, deadly violence against other human beings," the resolution says. "Kansas must affirm its reputation as a welcoming, tolerant state."

However, the resolution doesn't seek further action against Peck, such as a censure. The House's rules allow the chamber to discipline or expel a member but don't spell out what constitutes misconduct.

Peck did not immediately return telephone and email messages seeking comment. He's resisted calls from Democratic legislators, immigrant rights groups and Hispanic advocacy groups to resign.

Davis, a Lawrence Democrat, also didn't immediately return a telephone message seeking comment.

Peck made his comment during a March 14 committee discussion about a state plan to use gunmen in helicopters to control the feral swine population. Peck said, "If shooting these immigrating feral hogs works, maybe we have found a (solution) to our illegal immigration problem."

The comment drew gasps from other committee members and the audience, and he said after the meeting that he was joking. A day later, he issued a short statement calling the remark "regrettable," adding, "Please accept my apology."

Gov. Sam Brownback called the remark inappropriate. Leaders of the House's Republican majority called it offensive but said they counseled Peck, accepted his apology and considered him "a valuable member" of the chamber.

The Democrats' resolution says Peck's public apology "does not display the remorse that is necessary to remedy this wrong."

"Human immigration is an important part of our past and our future," the resolution says. "Endorsing violent acts against any individual or group cannot be tacitly or explicitly condoned or seen as condoned by those who hold leadership positions."

Other sponsors of the resolution are Democratic Reps. Barbara Ballard, of Lawrence; Tom Burroughs, of Kansas City; Eber Phelps, of Hays; Annie Tietze, of Topeka, and Valdenia Winn, of Kansas City.


ivalueamerica 7 years, 1 month ago

why is this fool still in office? In this day and age if you are so stupid that you do not realize the consequences of your actions, how can he think he has what it takes to serve the state?

jhawkinsf 7 years, 1 month ago

Beating a dead horse to death again and again.

kugrad 7 years, 1 month ago

That's so thoughtful. Did you make it up all by yourself?

WilburNether 7 years, 1 month ago

Typical non-response from a liberal. Lawrenceguy40 made a valid point, and, as is so typical of liberals, you appear to be incapable of a substantive response, so your knee jerks and you post a personal insult.

kugrad 7 years, 1 month ago

That's so thoughtful. Did you make it up all by yourself?

pace 7 years, 1 month ago

So Peck is your kind of good old guy?

jhawkinsf 7 years, 1 month ago

I've said in the past, many times, that his comment was terrible. But I never thought it was said to taken literally. I never thought he really meant that people should be shot from helicopters. It was a very bad attempt at humor and in very bad taste. That said, he was elected by the people of his district and the proper way to remove him is through a recall effort. Denying his constituents their elected representative poses problems greater than having a fool in office. Time has passed since his comment and the initial furor. There has been enough time for a recall effort to at least be well underway, if that is their desire. If a recall process has begun, fine. If it has not, perhaps his constituents also see this as a very bad attempt at humor. In either case, it's their call. For those who really feel strongly that Mr. Peck should be removed from office, go to his district and help with a recall.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 7 years, 1 month ago

Are you still stuck on this line of non-reasoning?

This is not an attempt to remove him. It's merely an attempt the get the Republicans in the legislature to condemn his comments in an official way. What's wrong with that?

jhawkinsf 7 years, 1 month ago

Nothing wrong with the condemnation. It's of no practical value, but if the Democrats want to do that, It think that's fine. My comments about the recall were in response to a previous comment about why is he still in office. (by ivalueamerica). By the way, I think this man does sound like a fool and if he were my representative, I would indeed sign a recall petition. I just don't think it's my call since he is not my representative.

somedude20 7 years, 1 month ago

They won't as this state has a number of Pecks in it. Remember Mr. O'possum and that stupid lady who can tell what country you are from by your skin color. Brownback who creates policy from a stupid little fairy tale book and Koch who wants to lock up anyone who is not a WASP. This is Kansas folks you have to expect it. My advice, drink. Drink often and in large quantites! Oh, Happy Zombie day people!!!!

Daniel Dicks 7 years, 1 month ago

Hear, hear, Only the willfully ignorant do not see the pattern of discriminatory offenses.

"Kansas, as bigoted as you think it is".

jhawkinsf 7 years, 1 month ago

I've live in several states, in big cities and smaller communities. I'm a member of a religious minority. The place I encountered the most discriminatory comments about my religion was San Francisco. Yes, that bastion of liberalism and tolerance. The place with the least, probably Texas. I called out one person in this forum just the other day for making an anti-semetic remark. Yes, it happens here in Lawrence.
An amendment to your quotation might be: "Anyplace can be as bigoted as you think it is"

pace 7 years, 1 month ago

So you guys think Peck's remark was ok and his apology was real? What kind of characters are you? That remark was nonsense and mean and his apology was insulting. What a bunch of creeps, to defend the guy and his joke about shooting immigrants from helicopters like feral pigs. How much sensibility must one possess to call the guy on it. You condoning, even excusing that says a lot about you being blind to the results of applauding hate speech.

jhawkinsf 7 years, 1 month ago

Only two stupid posts .... whoops, this makes three. :-)

Paul R Getto 7 years, 1 month ago

Give it up; if Mr. Peck has a problem, it is with the people who elected him. Fix the budget and reform the tax system.

BigDog 7 years, 1 month ago

pace .... This has nothing to do with the comments. They were wrong.

This is about grandstanding. This is more about a political party that has rendered itself to nearly fourth party status in this state (behind mderate Republican Party, conservative Republican and whack job Republican Party) trying to draw some attention and score some political points. It appears that Paul Davis and Anthony Hensley have to rely more on these types of tactics. Too bad that over the years they haven't spent more of their time recruiting candidates with a mindset more like Mark Parkinson. If they could get out, push policy ideas that reflect the will of the larger sector of people (not unions, education and social services) and recruit quality candidates they could return. If not, look for additional losses in the 2012 election.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 7 years, 1 month ago

Winning elections in Kansas has absolutely nothing to do with recruiting quality candidates.

Hong_Kong_Phooey 7 years, 1 month ago

Wow, I could have sworn that there were more pressing issues that they SHOULD be focusing on, instead of something that happened a month or two in the past. Was Rep. Peck's comment in poor taste? Yes. Was it a comment that offended some people? Yes. Was it a comment deserving of soooo much time being spent on it? No.

Of course, the Democratic Party has always seemed more concerned with mending hurt feelings than with mending broken policies, failing economies, and unemployment.

Sincerely, An unaffiliated voter.

coloradoan 7 years, 1 month ago

OK, so what are the more important issues? Maybe the budget shortfall? That would be good if they (the Republicans) worked on that, but, NO, they have been addressing serious issues like lap dancing, state fossils, and fixing the roof on the Capitol. Get real. The Dems, of which I am not, are at least trying to repair the damage done to our national, perhaps international reputation, by the extreme comments of one particular individual. We willl not attract major corporations to hire people (like, y'know, jobs) with a perception of intolerance and bigotry that the remark portrayed.

Bob_Keeshan 7 years, 1 month ago

This pretty much sums up the current "Ruling Class" in Kansas politics.

Peck is a Republican, he could have suggested shooting Jesus Christ and it would be swept under the rug.

But Peck has the "right" political affiliation, so, you know, Yawn.

Which is exactly what the Kansas GOP has to say about every other issue facing the state. So long as they are in power, you know, Yawn to jobs, Yawn to the economy, Yawn to education, Yawn to social services, Yawn to everything.

pace 7 years, 1 month ago

What is sad is they left it to the democrats to ask, they could of stood up to condemn the remarks. The number of times I have been in the room where creeps were obnoxious, the majority sit there and smiled politely maybe at the most, embarrassed. I think of the ones who had the sand to speak up. It doesn't take much back bone to say publicly the remarks were wrong but it is shame on the republicans for waiting. they had plenty of time. Political sides should not matter so much that people stand and smile, shrug their shoulders and say "oh well".

Richard Heckler 7 years, 1 month ago

This is still making national news. Peck needs to hit the road....... with Brownback and Kobach all hand in hand.

question4u 7 years, 1 month ago

If advocating state-sponsored extermination of people, even in a sick and pathetic attempt at humor, isn't something worthy of condemnation, what is? Would the House have condemned Peck's comments if he had suggested that immigrants should be raped before being murdered from helicopters, or would he have had to say something even worse? What would it take? Condemnation doesn't even entail punishment. It merely shows strong disapproval. Is it really the case that there aren't enough Republican members of the House who strongly disapprove of Peck's abominable statement to condemn it? Peck's stupidity brought shame to Kansas on an international level, but the House has so far assumed a large part of the responsibility for that shame.

coloradoan 7 years, 1 month ago

Substitute most any other group (ethnic, religious, or cultural), and just imagine the outrage. Why should it be any less offensive that the statement was made with respect to illegal immigrants?

Jimo 7 years, 1 month ago

While not an apology for the ages, the man did apologize. Democrats are misguided to be pushing a divisive and obviously partisan agenda and are belittled by it. Save your fire for someone whose sin is broader than being a jackass.

Erin Graham 7 years, 1 month ago

Have you guys seen his latest article in the Independence Reporter? What a joke!!!!!!! The tip of the iceberg? He wants to resolve the financial crisis in Kansas by taking all the copper off the Capital building... Genius!

quik 7 years, 1 month ago

Should the Republicans also draw up a formal condemnation for the actions of this Democrat State Senator?

April 6, 2011

A state senator is defending her fast talking as she is stopped for speeding on the Kansas Turnpike. Wednesday another video is released by authorities, appearing to show Senator Oletha Faust-Goudeau using her status to try to get out of a speeding ticket.

It was January 2010, on the Kansas Turnpike near the Emporia exit. A Kansas Highway Patrol Trooper stopped Senator Oletha Faust-Goudeau for going 84 in a 70. His car camera recorded the stop.

"I'm a state senator. I just left Topeka," said Faust-Goudeau to the trooper.

Faust-Goudeau explains to the trooper that she just left the McDonalds and couldn't be going that fast already. Several times she makes sure the trooper knows she's a legislator. "I'm asking you this, if you would just give me a warning today. I'm asking you as a senator," said Faust-Goudeau. "I'm asking immunity."

The Senator also brought up that the stop may be related to racial profiling.

"Are you sure that this is not racial profiling?" asked Faust-Goudeau during the stop. "No Ma'am," replied the trooper saying it had nothing to do with racial profiling.

The trooper did end up giving Faust-Goudeau a ticket, which she paid. The trooper's supervisor says he called him immediately after the stop to report the more than 15 minute exchange, and did mention the racial profiling comment.

"When you have a state senator that says that to you, that raised a red flag for this officer. Why he was worried was he was thinking, 'I haven't done anything wrong, why would this be brought up,'" said Kansas Highway Patrol Capt. John Walters.

We caught up with Faust-Goudeau Wednesday afternoon at her home. "Never in my mind was I using my status to get out of the ticket," she said.

This isn't the first tape released. Last month the Wichita police department released two videos showing Faust-Goudeau being stopped for speeding.

One in February of 2011 and the other in October of 2009. In each case she asked for leniency because she is a senator. Now that this third tape has been made public, she's wondering if someone is out to get her. "I'm starting to feel like a witch hunt. Someone is out to discredit me," she said.

Some of Faust-Goudeau's fellow legislators are responding to the incidents saying she is a good person, but made some bad judgment calls and should not have asked to get a warning "as a state senator."

Cait McKnelly 7 years, 1 month ago

Trying to get out of a speeding ticket (and not succeeding) is the best you can come up with? Really?

jhawkinsf 7 years, 1 month ago

Was that incident about a person trying to get out of a speeding ticket or was it about an elected representative trying to use her influence to prevent a police officer from doing his duty, his sworn obligation to uphold the law? Was Mr. Peck serious in the statement he made or was it just an off color remark? It's amazing how some people feel free to think the worst of one person, but then minimize the actions of another. At least be consistent.

WilburNether 7 years, 1 month ago

That's a really ignorant comment. The point is not so much that the Senator tried to get out of a speeding ticket, but rather that she attempted to use her status as a State Senator, and the coin given to her by the Chief of Police, to influence an officer of the law not to do his duty.

Do you get it now?

Cait McKnelly 7 years, 1 month ago

The Virgil Peck story was picked up by the AP and CNN and has filtered over the pond and gone international. Once more, Kansas has become the laughing stock of the entire world. And people want to know why this state is dieing.

Cait McKnelly 7 years, 1 month ago

You really think things like this don't have lingering effects? "Honey, my office wants me to open a foreign office for them somewhere in the middle of the US so it's centrally located. I'm thinking of Kansas." "Oh no Nigel! Don't you remember that horrible Mr. Peck man? And he was a legislator! No, dear, I really think Chicago would be much better suited." That conversation could just as easily take place in a boardroom as a bedroom. And if you think things like that don't happen you're a dreamer.

jhawkinsf 7 years, 1 month ago

That's a cute scenario, cait. But Chicago has a long and shall we say colorful history. Isn't that where the governor (Blagojevech) was forced out. Wouldn't your hypothetical pair rather move their company to a place where no person has ever said anything inappropriate. Where there is no crime. Where every single person is perfect in every single way. No taxes and a waiting workforce. They would want a perfect infrastructure with a perfect political system that would provide centuries of stability.
"And if you think things like that don't happen you're a dreamer" - Dream on, Cait.

Brent Garner 7 years, 1 month ago

I wonder, IF a Demoncrat had made a similarly offensive statement regarding, say, Tea Party members, would the Demoncrats and their erstwhile allies at the the LJW postings be equally interested in that Demoncrat being rebuked?

Have noticed a trend. When a Republican does something wrong, and is caught, he/she is expected to resign and usually does. When a Demoncrat does something wrong, and is caught, he/she is not expected to resign and does not. Why is this???

muttonchops 7 years, 1 month ago

Although Representative Peck has the right to free speech and this Legislature stands in full support of that right, that right does not include the advocacy of gratuitous, deadly violence against other human beings,"

Everyone has the right to free speech. But everyone is also subject to the consequences of what they say. If I spout racial hatred at work, I'll get fired. If the majority of voters are upset about what he said, they'll fire him at election time.

Stop wasting our time with this garbage.

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