GOP lawmaker denies legislating while drunk despite video


Video shows Wisconsin state Rep. Dale Kooyenga speaking slowly and slurring his words on the floor of the Assembly — but he still swears he was NOT drunk on the job.

A Republican state representative in Wisconsin is denying allegations that he was drunk while debating the state budget.

Rep. Dale Kooyenga gave his rebuttal to a right-wing website, arguing that the claim is "a desperate approach because they don’t have me on the issues." The Republican also complained that the story is "the politics of personal destruction and my constituents know my character."

Kooyenga made this denial despite resurfaced video that shows him on the Assembly floor speaking slowly and slurring his words in 2015.

On the same day the footage was taken, lawmakers had held an unofficial "beer summit" at a nearby restaurant to pass the time after the Capitol was evacuated due to a bomb threat.

Wisconsin Democrats have cited the video to question Kooyenga's fitness for office.

"None of our candidates have appeared on the floor after having too much to drink," said Senate Minority Leader Jennifer Shilling, referencing Kooyenga, at a forum with the Republican majority leader.

The re-surfaced video isn't the only controversy dogging Kooyenga, who is competing for a state Senate seat with small business owner Julie Henszey.

Kooyenga was also forced to pay a $30,000 settlement after removing a sign criticizing Trump in the state Capitol. He defended his actions with several unbelievable claims that the sign was somehow a danger to the public.

Despite these problems, the right-wing Koch brothers are spending money to back his re-election. Kooyenga has pushed for tax policies highly favorable to the billionaire polluters. Those same policies also raise the tax burden on the poor.

The outcome in Wisconsin's 5th Senate District could come down to whether the money of Kooyenga's wealthy benefactors can overwhelm concerns about his inappropriate behavior in office.