Posted by: sweeneyblog | March 14, 2011

Doug Ericksen threatens to arrest the Press

Vincent Buys, Jason Overstreet and Doug Ericksen all came up for a town hall meeting this weekend. The local republican party tried to scare up their members sending out this alarmed email:

“Town Hall Meeting with 42nd District Legislators

Our Republican legislators are having town halls on Saturday to discuss what’s going on in the Legislature and Democrats are organizing people to disrupt these meetings. Don’t let them go Wisconsin on us! You are encouraged to peacefully participate at Saturday’s Town Hall meeting.

-Peter Graves. Washington State Republican Party”

As the communications director for the Whatcom County Democrats, I wasn’t aware of any party members who were planning on being disruptive, much less pulling a “Wisconson” (as if generating broad public support to peacefully congregate against anti-worker legislation is bad thing?) Now, I know several Democrats who wanted to hear their legislators talk and politely ask them questions. And that is what happened. Still, its sad that the local GOP continues to feel compelled to use fear to motivate its members. “Watch out, those scary Democrats might show up and ask someone a question. They’re disruptive.” OoooOOoo.

HOWEVER, I would like to note one altercation that happened there.

Shane Roth, local blogger at Latte Republic and friend of The Political Junkie, is known for filming local political events. He and his camera have been at many a council meeting or public hearing. Because this was a public event, paid for with our tax dollars, he showed up to film our representatives answering questions. As a good member of the citizen press, he arrived, set up his camera and plug it into the PA system so that he could record some quality audio.

That’s when Sen. Doug Ericksen apparently flipped out. He demanded that Shane remove his plug from the PA system and not be able to get good audio of this event. Shane refused, saying he needed to get a quality recording of the event and the PA system was the best way to do that. Ericksen threatened to have him arrested. Sure, call the cops. I just want to record this public event. I’m not trying to do anything illegal, just record what our representatives have to say, Shane said.

Ericksen continued to berate and demand that Shane be denied audio access until a Lynden School District employee came over and, at Ericksen’s biddng, removed Shane’s sound cord. Shane didn’t want to escalate the situation so he contented himself with getting the best sound he could.

You can read Shane’s account himself here.

If you are looking for a republican view on what happened, check out Wally Wonders Why’s account here. He did not notice any disruptive Democrats either.

So this just leaves the question, what was Doug Ericksen so worried about? With all the video “sting” operations by the Tea Party folks making the news recently (NPR, Planned Parenthood), was he worried that the local Democrats were going to use his own tactics against him? That they were going to cut and paste his words to make him look ridiculous?

Or was he more concerned that they wouldn’t have to? That merely recording and replaying him speaking would be dangerous? Those are questions only Doug Ericksen can answer.

Finally, I would like to thank Fish and Bicycles for their recent shout out in a round-up of local blogs here. Read their stuff. It is good.



  1. This is such a common NeoCon/ Tea-bagger tactic. Take your worst, and charge your opponent with that. Then, the public will at best assume “Well, they both do it.”

  2. Hi Riley,

    Just a quick note to let you know that I did send an email to Olympia late Friday afternoon requesting permission to video tape the meeting. The email was sent to Ashley Forsyth, the person who was listed as a contact at the bottom of Senator Eriksen’s press release announcing the meeting.

    I’m still waiting to hear back.


  3. […] Click here to see more on it from the perspective of Riley Sweeney. […]

  4. […] light of Doug Ericksen‘s upcoming run, I give you my write up of Doug Ericksen trying to arrest a citizen […]

  5. […] saying “Something’s wrong, has Shane been playing with the Microphone” Yes, Doug Ericksen, threatening a local citizen journalist with arrest is always hilarious to joke about. He talked […]

  6. […] First, he tried to arrest my friend Shane Roth for videotaping his public town hall meeting. You can read a full account of Doug Ericksen’s  actions here. Second, when asked a question about gay rights and women’s health at a recent forum, Doug […]

  7. […] healthy, I promise), when who do I see sitting two tables away? County Executive candidate Doug Ericksen, and fellow Republican (and former County Councilman) Ward Nelson. I usually don’t make it my […]

  8. […] as opposed to the 40th where it usually is. Would Vincent Buys, Jason Overstreet, or worst of all, Doug Ericksen, work to protect Bellingham’s drinking water?  Doug Ericksen, who got a ZERO Percent rating […]

  9. […] Doug Ericksen took it to brand new levels recently. Doug Ericksen, who you might remember as the guy who tried to arrest a citizen journalist, or the guy who is planning on dismantling our county unions, came out and said that the plans […]

  10. […] Shane is a citizen journalist and videographer who regularly records public meetings. Frequent readers might remember him as the guy Doug Ericksen tried to have arrested. […]

  11. […] more information about Doug Ericksen, check out my article about Doug threatening to arrest a journalist or his plans to dismantle our county unions. GA_googleAddAttr("AdOpt", "1"); […]

  12. […] war on the working people of Whatcom, who has threatened to dismantle our county unions, and who tried to have my friend arrested for videotaping a public meeting. Vote Jack Louws and don’t look […]

  13. […] his attempt in March to get Citizen Journalist Shane Roth arrested for filming his public meeting. You find my write-up about this incident here. Now Shane Roth, friend of The Political Junkie and local blogger under the handle […]

  14. […] By the way, it wouldn’t be a political junkie post about Doug Ericksen without mentioning his attempt to have a citizen journalist arrested or his disdain for the working people of Whatcom […]

  15. […] his first defeat is . . . very satisfying, especially considering his behavior over the last year  GA_googleAddAttr("AdOpt", "1"); GA_googleAddAttr("Origin", "other"); […]

  16. […] as we wait for the next set of results, but to tide you over, here is myself and fellow blogger Shane Roth, of Latte Republic, on The Joe Show (930 KBAI) today talking about the election results, and having […]

  17. […] examine the Republican side of this equation with the County Executive race between Jack Louws and Doug Ericksen. Ericksen was endorsed by the Whatcom GOP and supported by the traditional republican establishment […]

  18. […] Buys, Jason Overstreet and Doug Ericksen (who you might remember attacks working people, and the press) in the 42nd district. Stephanie Kountouros, with Planned Parenthood Votes NW, MC-ed the […]

  19. […] blogger and friend of The Political Junkie, Shane Roth (who you might remember was threatened by Doug Ericksen earlier this year) has filed an ethics complaint over Sam Crawford’s backroom deals with […]

  20. […] map, John Koster is in the 1st district now, as is known partisan hack and recent electoral loser Doug Ericksen. Mr. Ericksen has already purchase the domain names for running for Congress and has consulted a […]

  21. […] my letter to the editor urging Jason Overstreet, Vincent Buys, and Doug Ericksen to support marriage equality was printed in the Cascadia Weekly and the Bellingham Herald. Here it […]

  22. […] himself to support marriage equality, I promise that I will never again remind people about his attempts to arrest citizen journalists, or his attacks on working people. I will give him a reprieve. So please, Doug, do the right thing. […]

  23. […] A write-up of the Buys, Overstreet and Ericksen town hall in Lynden. Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterLike this:LikeBe the first to like this […]

  24. […] A write-up of the Buys, Overstreet and Ericksen town hall in Lynden. Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterLike this:LikeOne blogger likes this […]

  25. […] The Shockingly: Doug Ericksen managed to make it through an entire town hall meeting without threatening any journalists with arrest. Unlike last year. […]

  26. […] legislator, I asked him candidly, “On a scale of one to a whole nest, how much of a weasel is Doug Ericksen?” Goodman laughed, “I’m not unhappy to see him in the Senate, there I don’t […]

  27. […] Nevada – I have to be honest, I don’t have a good grip on Nevada politics. Every time I feel like I have a hold on them, they surprise me. So this race, in an evenly divided state, between two relative unknowns, remains a toss-up until I have more information. Maybe former Las Vegas resident and citizen journalist Shane Roth can help me out. If Doug Ericksen hasn’t arrested him yet. […]

  28. […] people I hear from ask me how we are going to raise more money.” Buys gave a big thank you to Doug Ericksen, who he credits as a “role-model” and a “political […]

  29. […] State Senator I interviewed, I had to ask the really important questions, “So Sen. Hobbs, is Doug Ericksen really a scum-sucking weasel or does he just seem that way?” Hobbs laughed, and then paused to […]

  30. […] 42nd is represented by an anti-working people crusader, journalist threaten-er and worst of all, user of Papyrus font in his mailers, Doug Ericksen (R), who after getting his […]

  31. […] on Oct 30th at 2pm in Arntzen Hall 17, I will be debating Sen. Doug Ericksen on Environmental Regulations. I have to admit, I’m more than a little nervous about these […]

  32. […] Doug Ericksen, well-known journalist threatener and occasional legislator, proclaimed his love for nuclear power recently. His latest […]

  33. […] the other end of the spectrum, Sen. Doug Ericksen professed his support for family planning, but refused to fund it. Because if you support […]

  34. […] elected officials butted heads yesterday in a committee hearing as Sen. Doug Ericksen (R) broke parliamentary procedure to shut down the last possible vote on a bill sponsored by Sen. […]

  35. […] bit critical of you over the last couple of years, over such trifling concerns like you trying to arrest a citizen journalist, your plans to break up county unions and your illegal shutdown of a bill that would have protected […]

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