Roach, an Auburn resident who represents the 31st District, no longer will get a voice or a vote in her caucus, where lawmakers huddle by party affiliation behind closed doors.
“As your fellow Senators it is difficult to be in a room with you when you erupt in anger,” Senate GOP caucus leaders said in a letter to Roach obtained by the News Tribune. “For our employees it is unacceptable.”
The rare step stems from an April 15, 2009, confrontation between Roach and a Senate staff lawyer who handles personnel and ethics matters, Michael Hoover, but reflects years of conflict between Roach and other Senate Republicans.
Roach reached back to those past incidents in an interview today to argue GOP leaders are persecuting her. She said she has filed requests for reconsideration of the caucus ejection and a reprimand of her by a bipartisan Senate committee that Republicans cited in their decision. But she doesn’t mind being left out of caucus, Roach said.
“It’s not anything I’m missing at all,” she said, “and it’s kind of freedom-evoking.”