Sen. Johnson Concerned with "Call Overload"
U.S. Senator Ron Johnson (R-WI) says he's concerned some of his constituents can't reach his offices.
Johnson says his phone lines are being overloaded with thousands of calls a day.
Johnson said, "We might field, depending on the issue, a few hundred phone calls a day, that's when people are really energized about something. Sometimes it's a few dozen, so this the thousands of calls are definitely an organized effort."
Groups like One Wisconsin Now, a self-described "liberal group", have used social media to criticize Johnson's votes confirming Trump cabinet nominees, most notably Betsy DeVos, new U.S. Secretary of Education.
On February 6th, the group tweeted "RT if you think @SenRonJohnson needs to answer his damn telephone about supporting #DeVos."
Friday, Johnson said, "We are [answering the phone] but they're overwhelming the phone, and they're doing it precisely to try and create those types of stories."
UW-Milwaukee political expert, Mordecai Lee, says people calling their legislators is essential to democracy, but usually only happens when people are mad.
Lee said, "Democrats are mobilizing now to call Washington. Whereas during the fight over Obamacare, it was Republicans who were against Obamacare who were mobilizing to call Washington."
Johnson also spoke about DeVos. He said, "Betsy DeVos is somebody who her and her husband have been highly successful in life. They've devoted their time and resources, millions of dollars, trying to make sure that children in the inner city, people who are trapped in failing schools, have access to a quality education because they realize that's the foundation of leading a successful life. And yet, somebody like Betsy DeVos has been demonized by the left, I just think it's quite honestly shameful."
U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin's (D-WI) office also says it has received a high volume of calls from people concerned with President Trump's cabinet picks and executive orders.