A resolution calling for peace in politics died at the county Republican Party caucus level on Saturday. The Oconto County Republican Party decided against approving a resolution that condemns the use of violence to achieve political ends.
“There was lively back-and-forth discussion after I read the resolution in its entirety, to the assembled crowd,” said Barbara Finger, chairman of the Oconto County GOP. “In the end, more people voted against than for.”
The resolution, written by Republican Party members Kevin Barthel and John Foote, was debated the same day President Donald Trump was acquitted in the Senate trial, 57-43, of inciting violence at the Capitol on January 6. Trump prevailed despite a majority of senators voting against him, including seven Republicans, because the Senate did not reach the two-thirds number of votes necessary to convict.
“…all political parties have a civic responsibility to promote their ideals in as productive a way as possible,” the resolution stated. It added, “…all violence and all actions that may condone violence to attain political ends are destructive to our governance as well as our democratic way of life.”
In addition to the resolution failing, Oconto Republican voters did vote to retain Finger as their chairman. Finger’s opponent, Leah Merriman, was a newcomer to the Oconto County GOP. Her Facebook page uses a Pepe the Frog profile picture, usually an Alt-Right symbol which is considered racist and anti-Semitic. Merriman also has a Facebook post endorsing the conspiracy theory that the moon landing was a hoax as well as another Facebook post on December 30 calling for the state legislature to throw out the presidential election results for Wisconsin.