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Bill moving to outlaw disrespectful behavior at Legislature

By Associated Press

LAST UPDATED: 08:10 p.m. HST, Mar 01, 2012

Disrespectful or contemptuous behavior at the Legislature could become a petty misdemeanor under a bill moving through the state House.

The House Judiciary Committee advanced the bill, despite receiving vehement opposition at a hearing in February, when many testifiers questioned the constitutionality of the measure and acted on their First Amendment right to free speech as they testified. 

Representatives from Citizens for the Separation of State and Church stated that if the bill passes into law, they'll contest it in court.

The state attorney general expressed concerns about bill's language. For instance, if heckling and booing could be penalized, but not cheering and applauding, it could be a content-based restriction on free speech.

The committee relaxed the bill's original draft and reduced the maximum penalty to 10 days in jail.

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eastside808 wrote:
How much time and money is being wasted on a problem that should be handled by the sergeant at arms present in the Legislature? Is it possible to publish the name of the legislator that introduced this bill rather than have the readers trying to locate this information? This bill reminds me of the bill to allow dogs into eating establishments. Don't we have more pressing problems for legislation than these two?
on March 1,2012 | 08:36AM
Paco3185 wrote:
Great website (http://www.capitol.hawaii.gov) with all the details on HB2751 HD1. All the regular suspects though and if we keep re-electing them then this is what we will continue to get.
on March 1,2012 | 01:23PM
kapoleitalkstory wrote:
Calvin "I Don't Live in my District" Say introduced this bill.
on March 1,2012 | 01:24PM
fairgame947 wrote:
Seems there are far more important issues to deal with than a conduct issue. Please legislators, act like adults and more forward on pressing issues.
on March 1,2012 | 09:29AM
poidragon wrote:
Oh great, more idiotic legislation from our 'oh so esteemed legislature' that has nothing better to do than create bills for problems that don't exist or are not consistent with their point of view! This is an election year and it's about time to vote out the legislators who continue to obfuscate and obscure the business of the people of the state of Hawaii! Vote out the idiots.........
on March 1,2012 | 11:52AM
poidragon wrote:
OMG, how much more stupidity will the people of Hawaii be treated to by it's own 'lame duck legislature?' There is so much more serious legislative work to be done to bring our state out of the fiscal recession and get it on the road to recovery than creating such manini, mean spirited, unnecessary legislative bills such as this!
on March 1,2012 | 11:56AM
Living_Large wrote:
If they can't take the heat, stop running for office!
on March 1,2012 | 04:19PM
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