Signs of the Season

Between reports of theft and voter enthusiasm, many in Northeast Wisconsin are seeing a decrease in the amount of political yard signs

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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) – A frustrated Green Bay homeowner finally had enough, setting up a surveillance system in hopes of catching the person who had damaged his political yard sign numerous times.

Several reports of stolen or damaged signs led the Green Bay Police Department to send a message to the community reminding those responsible that they are breaking the law. In the message it clarifies that if anyone is caught in the act, they could be fined for criminal damage to property or theft.

Lt. Kevin Warych, with Green Bay Police, says people need to remember people’s rights. “Regardless of their political views, people have the right of displaying whichever sign they choose in their yard or their business.”

Local Republican and Democratic party leaders share that view.

Marian Krumberger, Chairwoman of the Republican Party of Brown County, had this to say about respecting other’s opinion and right to put out a sign, “Whether it’s Democrat or Republican, that’s one way we’re united, we certainly want to respect each other’s rights to do that.”

Rich Langan, Vice Chairman of the Democratic Party of Brown County, agreed. “It’s a shame,” he said. “You know, people have a right to express their opinion, and whatever opinion, whether you like red ice cream or blue ice cream, they have a right to express their opinion.”

In a number of cases it’s only the signs for the presidential candidates that are being taken or vandalized.

Langan said, “I’ve been hearing of an epidemic of Trump thefts, and we’re starting to get a lot of Hillary thefts. They’re not taking the down ticket yard signs.”

Krumberger added, “We are definitely losing more Trump-Pence signs than we are the other signs.”

Also, many feel they’re seeing more empty lawns, or yard signs for down ballot candidates but not for Trump or Clinton at the top of the ticket.

Krumberger observed, “As I’m driving there does seem to appear to be less signs.”

Langan agreed, and had this to add, “I had a neighbor walk by with her dog, and she said, ‘My goodness, you don’t see many yard signs,’ and she said, ‘Well, I guess that’s because people don’t want to admit to who they are going to vote for.’ I think she hit the nail right on the head. People are afraid to divulge in who they are going to vote for.”