As a constituent of the 9th Congressional District, I am compelled to write in an effort to ensure that all residents of the district take notice of our representative's recent arrest. While news of Jan Schakowsky's arrest was widely reported during the news cycle on that day, attention to the arrest faded quickly. As reported by the Daily Herald the following day, our elected legislator (i.e. lawmaker) openly acknowledged that she understood an arrest was possible for her participation in the rally. Further, she was afforded multiple opportunities to obey the law prior to her arrest, and she decided not to obey the law.
Instead of drawing effective attention in support of the rally's cause, our representative's decision to intentionally break a law reflects a lack of respect for the structure of our civil democracy and her position of authority within it. Her actions have diminished her voice as an advocate for all the issues affecting the 9th District within the legislative body she works and has demeaned the office she holds.
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Going forward, regardless of your political affiliation, I am asking you to hold our lawmakers accountable for their choices and insist that our lawmakers not be lawbreakers. Perhaps as voters we can bring an end to the constant state of shame that is Illinois politics.
A. Douglas Martin