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Madison – State Representative Dianne Hesselbein, the ranking-Democrat on the Assembly Committee on Veterans and Military Affairs, released the following statement after learning of a column written by DVA Secretary Daniel Zimmerman defending confederate statues now being removed in communities who find the symbols they represent abhorrent:

“It’s disappointing to learn that at a time when Governor Scott Walker seems unable or unwilling to openly denounce white supremacists, members of his cabinet are defending confederate monuments honoring those who led the fight for secession and to maintain slavery,” Hesselbein said. “The American Civil War will never be forgotten, nor the sacrifice of 11,000 Wisconsinites who died in the struggle to maintain the Union and eradicate slavery. Let us be clear: it is legitimate for communities to confront the past and act accordingly.”

“The divisive and inflammatory rhetoric used by Secretary Zimmerman in his column is counter-productive and well outside the scope of his duties as secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs. At the very least, he owes the public an apology.”

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