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Zepnick rebukes Assembly for stripping committee assignments

Posted at 5:58 PM, Dec 05, 2017
and last updated 2017-12-06 08:11:43-05

State Rep. Josh Zepnick admonished the Assembly’s decision to strip him of his committee assignments in the wake of two sexual misconduct allegations

Assembly Speaker Robin Vos has requested Zepnick be removed from for the five committees he serves on.

In a statement sent on Tuesday, Zepnick said: 

"I am very disappointed and disturbed by this move.  I have been facing anonymous allegations all being done through news media reports.

Last time I checked, there is still a US Constitution that provides something called "due process" where I have the right to defend myself.

I have already issued a public apology and I have made clear that I am not resigning from my position.

Who represents the 9th Assembly District in the Legislature is a decision made by voters and there is another election season coming up in about 4 months.  I will make a decision about running again at the appropriate time in my life. 

Right now I am very focused on my family, as my father is dying of cancer and might not make it to see Christmas this year.  My family and friends support me 200% as does my wife, who I have been amicably separated from since May of 2014.

I hope this unfair move by Assembly Democratic leaders is a temporary measure and I can continue serving with honor and do the job I was elected to do by the people of Milwaukee's South Side.”

Zepnick began the 2017-2018 session serving on five committees -- Energy and Utilities; Family Law; Federalism and Interstate Relations; Financial Institutions; and Mental Health.

Assembly Minority Leader Gordon Hintz has called for Zepnick to resign but Zepnick has refused.

Kit Beyer, a spokeswoman for Assembly Republican Speaker Robin Vos, said Tuesday that Hintz requested that Vos remove Zepnick from all those committee assignments and Vos complied.

Hintz confirmed he made the request and said he's consulting with Democrats and Republicans to ensure "this issue" is addressed appropriately. Zepnick didn't immediately reply to messages.