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'Wanted' poster has local lawmakers increasing security

Updated: Thursday, October 24 2013, 05:44 PM CDT
Reported by: Chris Papst

HARRISBURG -- Some members of the Pennsylvania State legislature have increased their security after receiving threats.  

One legislator says a “Wanted” poster -- which was created in June, put on the Internet, and has now resurfaced --  forced him to increase his security at a town hall meeting.

The man who made the poster says that’s not his intent. 

“A 'wanted' poster tends to be a little above normal from your typical, ‘politicians are horrible people and kick them all out’ kind of mantra,” said Seth Grove, a Republican from York County.

Grove is talking about a “Wanted” posted that depicts him and four other legislators -- Mike Turzai, R-28; Kerry Benninghoff, R-171; Eli Evankovich, R-54; and Phyllis Mundy, D-120.

The poster shows their pictures and says, “Wanted for seizure of property, violation of oath of office. Reward for removal of office.”

Grove says it sparked a movement of threats towards certain lawmakers and even their families. The legislators targeted are against House Bill 76, which would eliminate property taxes and replace them with higher sales and income taxes.

“Tracking it from that point on, conversations started getting into ‘kill 'em all and we’ll sort it out later’ comments,” Grove added. 

Jim Rodkey of Lebanon who designed the poster gave CBS 21 this statement:
“There is a threat and the threat is to remove those legislators who ignore their oath of office and continue to support this violation of our constitutionally protected rights to property,” he said.

Rodkey says he deliberately removed the words “Dead or Alive” that are normally found on a wanted posted because this is not about violence. He said it’s about the ballot box.   

“People are obviously going to react when they are told they have to work to pay property taxes so an educator can retire. Grove is reacting to a silly little poster and using it to deflect everyone from discussing the issue,” Rodkey added. 

“After this calms down we can refocus on policy like grown-ups and have a civil discourse about policies affecting our Commonwealth,” Grove said. 

Under House Bill 76, income taxes would go up 1.3 percent and sales tax would increase by one percent but include more items, but property taxes would be eliminated.'Wanted' poster has local lawmakers increasing security

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