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Representative Vic Williams Responds to New Times Critique of "Don't Tread on Me" License Plate Bill

Since our previous post about a bill proposed in the Arizona State Legislature that would amend the law regarding specialized license plates to include a "Don't Tread on Me" plate, one of the bill's sponsors got back to us and offered his explanation of some of the language used in the bill.

Representative Vic Williams tells New Times this is his first attempt at license plate legislation, but the language in the bill is vague for a reason.

"This is a specialized plate in search of a sponsor," he says. "We understand that we may have to go back and change some things."

He's referring to language in the bill saying that "any entity" can purchase the rights to design and collect the annual fee for the plate. Williams describes the vague bill as being a "technical placeholder."

Despite the current connection between the "Don't Tread on Me" mantra and the Tea Party movement, Williams says it isn't specific to any political party. In fact, it took some prying to get Williams to admit there even was a connection between the slogan and the movement.

He says the reason he introduced the bill is because he'd received several requests from his constituents to do so. He maintains, people shouldn't equate the slogan to the Tea Party.

We suggested in our prior post that an "anti-gun" group sponsoring the plate and then donating the annual fee to groups promoting tougher restrictions on guns would be sweet irony given the Tea Party connection. Williams, however, says the group he envisions to sponsor the plate would have "some connectivity" to what "Don't Tread on Me" stands for.

If that's Williams' desire, we know a group that seems to fit the bill: the Tea Party.


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