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Roach takes wrong approach to caucus ejection

Post by Cheryl Tucker on Feb. 1, 2010 at 7:43 pm with 2 Comments »
February 1, 2010 5:45 pm

This editorial will appear in Tuesday’s print edition.

State Sen. Pam Roach, R-Auburn, is legendary in the Legislature – but not in a good way. Just about anyone who has worked with or for her there over the years has anecdotes about her tantrums or examples of verbal abuse. There’s even a name for it: being “Roached.”

Her behavior has gotten her into hot water with her Republican colleagues several times in the past, but nothing like what happened last week when she was banned from her party’s caucus. GOP leadership had had enough, citing her “unacceptable” behavior toward staff.

In a letter to her, Republican caucus leaders said, “As your fellow Senators it is difficult to be in a room with you when you erupt in anger.” What that means for Roach is that she will no longer have a voice or vote within her own party’s huddles – diminishing any clout she still may have.

Roach reacted to the disciplinary measure the wrong way – with a counterattack, not contrition. Instead of resolving to work on what are obvious anger-management issues, she has accused Republican leaders of persecuting her. She wrote in her blog that “. . . there is some petty politics going on with some of my colleagues. . . . My caucus does not like me standing up. They figure, if you can’t beat her on issues, go after her personally.” Remember, she’s talking about her fellow Republicans here.

Roach is a hard-working advocate for her district, but being pushed out of the loop within her own caucus will make it harder for her to work on issues that benefit her constituents. That’s something voters should keep in mind, as Roach is running for re-election this year.

This disciplinary step against Roach is a significant one for Republican leaders. They see potential for increasing their numbers in the November election, and the last thing they want to do is lose a seat that’s been a sure thing for the past 20 years. But they had little choice; Roach’s behavior puts the caucus at risk of being sued for creating a hostile workplace for employees.

This newspaper endorsed Roach for election four years ago. But her behavior since then has been troubling. It’s been said that you can tell a lot about a person by how he or she treats subordinates. Roach’s treatment of Senate staff says volumes.

Leave a comment Comments → 2
  1. Sounds like a no-win situation. When a person gets a little power, it’s important to remember where you came from and that you are not immortal. Hope Obama sees this comment too !!!

  2. johnesherman says:

    So, TNT reporting the question is this: Why is State Sen. Pam Roach, R-Auburn angry? Let’s hear the story background. Showing anger about what? Tell us ‘Taxpayers’ the rest of this story.

    I find some interesting reporting by other media presenter; for example, Majority Rules Blog, Oh No, I Upset Senator Pam Roach! at
    Friday, January 22, 2010, (“Pam Roach is an ardent Eyman supporter and is a sponsor of his current measure to try to reimpose, if repealed, the I-960 prov[i]ons that currently allow 1/3 of the Legislators to prevent 2/3 of the Legislators from raising revenue or repealing any under-performing tax exemptions. It is a backdoor governing approach that gives the conservative Republicans minority control over the state budget even though voters clearly elected a majority of Democrats.”)

    So, let’s hear from this same TNT reporting about these anger issues—what subject, at who, which bills, and which spending—State Sen. Pam Roach, R-Auburn has voiced angrily?

    Because just looking at the data presented; it follows, a lot-of-people. ‘Taxpayers’, and all of our elected officials should also be angry; in short, just because the state and federal government is bankrupt today caused by yesterdays governments’ decisions.

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