MADISON (WITI) -- Wisconsin Assembly Republicans voted unanimously on Tuesday, March 4th to remove 49-year-old Bill Kramer as the Majority Leader. This, as Kramer faced pressure to resign amid charges he sexually harassed multiple women at a Republican fundraiser in Washington, D.C.
In an open caucus meeting State Rep. Mary Williams (R-Medford) made a motion to strip Kramer of his title. The motion was seconded by State Rep. Dan LeMahieu (R-Cascade), who made a speech to his fellow Republicans, saying the caucus had to hold Kramer accountable. "It's a disappointing day for the caucus that we have to come here and take the action we're taking," he said. "I'm disappointed with Rep. Kramer."
"The serious nature of the alleged incidents do not represent our caucus, and as such, Representative Kramer has lost the trust and confidence of Assembly Republican caucus members to fulfill his duties as our Assembly Republican majority leader," said State Rep. Williams.
The vote took less than five minutes. Assembly Republicans then elected a new Majority Leader. Pat Strachota of West Bend became the first woman elected as Majority Leader in the history of the Wisconsin Assembly.
"When I woke up this morning, I didn't know this is where I was going to be this afternoon. But I will step up to the challenge as Majority Leader," said Rep. Strachota.
Assembly Speaker Robin Vos says the move helps turn the page on a difficult chapter for the Republican Caucus.
"When somebody makes a major mistake, an embarrassing, reprehensible action, we didn't sit around or let the person stay in their seat and have no repercussions, we took immediate action to say he no longer can represent our caucus," said Vos.
Speculation now turns to Kramer's future. Will he resign from the Assembly? Will he run for re-election? They are questions only Kramer himself can answer -- and right now, he's not talking to anyone.