Casey: Symington flip-flops on felons

MONTPELIER In January 2007 when state Republican and independent representatives proposed a bill to require charged felons to submit to a DNA test, they were following national best-practices for law enforcement agencies and seeking to give police and prosecutors the tools needed to help prevent sexual predators and other criminals from threatening our families. But to Democrat gubernatorial candidate Gaye Symington, H.181, an act relating to requiring persons charged with or cited for a felony to submit a DNA sample for the state DNA data bank sponsored by Republican Representatives Tom Koch and Peg Flory and by independent Rep. Daryl Pillsbury apparently wasnt worth considering. She sent it to the House Judiciary Committee, where it languished for two sessions. Symington never acted to move the bill forward, according to critics. Symington told WCAX-TV that her new support for the measure reflects some evolution in her thinking. Vermonters wont buy it, said Jim Douglas Campaign manager Dennise Casey during a recent visit to Rutland. It is unbelievable that Symington would stand up in front of T.V. cameras and propose a measure that she has blocked for the past two years. As a legislator for 12 years four as Speaker of the House Symington has not made safe communities legislation a priority. In fact, shes been a roadblock. She has resisted calls for longer mandatory minimum sentences, civil confinement for danger sexual predators, and is against a more aggressive sex offender registry, said Casey. Her campaign conversion isn't serious, and it isn't credible. Symingtons campaign office did not return the Tribunes telephone calls.

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