Armstrong Votes for Bail Amendment, Work Search Requirements 

MADISON, WI – Following votes in the Wisconsin Legislature this week, Wisconsin residents will have the opportunity to vote on two statewide ballot questions this April:  a proposed state constitutional amendment to allow judges to consider more factors when setting bail and an advisory referendum on work search requirements for welfare recipients.  State Rep. Dave Armstrong (R-Rice Lake) supported putting both proposals on the ballot.    

“Wisconsin’s current bail system is one of the most restrictive in the nation when it comes to allowing judges to determine bail,” Representative Armstrong said.  “Under the Wisconsin Constitution in its current form, a judge setting bail may consider only whether the amount is necessary to ensure the defendant appears in court.  The proposed constitutional amendment, on the other hand, would allow judges dealing with defendants accused of violent crimes to look at the ‘totality of circumstances’, including whether a defendant has prior convictions for violent crimes.  I believe this language strikes a reasonable balance between a defendant’s rights and the rights of community members.

“With regard to the advisory referendum on work search requirements, I believe it’s appropriate to ask the people of Wisconsin to weigh in on whether people who apply for taxpayer-funded welfare programs should be required to actively look for work,” Representative Armstrong continued.  “Even now, long after the worst of the COVID pandemic, Wisconsin businesses are desperate for employees, but Governor Evers has consistently resisted commonsense work search requirements for benefit programs and getting able-bodied, childless adults off the sidelines.  I look forward to seeing what the people of Wisconsin have to say.”

Both questions will appear on the general spring ballot on April 4.