MIDDLEVILLE, Mich. — There’s outrage in Middleville over online statements made by village president Amanda Fisk.
Following the death of conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh, she shared an article on her personal Facebook page and laughed about it.
Residents who spoke with FOX 17 say her statements do not represent their village, and as a public official she should step down.
They’ve even started an online petition calling for her immediate removal.
“Honestly, that’s not the way you represent a community,” said Amanda Pullen, who has lived in Middleville her whole life.
Amanda’s father, Charles, served as village president until he passed away in November from complications due to COVID.
“When you hold a public office like presidency or mayor, you lose that privacy,” said Pullen. “I mean, you’re in the public eye no matter what.”
Last month, village officials elected trustee Amanda Fisk to fill Charles Pullen’s seat.
After Rush Limbaugh died, Fisk posted an article on Facebook, laughing about it.
“It represents Middleville in a way that none of us want it to be represented,” said Carla Rock. "Middleville, as I know it, is a very kind and giving community."
“It’s crushing to me, and it’s not the type of representation that our community deserves,” said Keara Hilton, who started the online petition asking for Fisk’s resignation. “He died of cancer, and she is the president of our village, and so I felt very strongly as someone who’s currently battling cancer that that is not the person I would choose to represent the village that I love,” said Hilton.
Fisk is not the only one laughing about Limbaugh’s death. In fact, multiple people online celebrated his passing.
Rush himself made fun of people dying. He even had a segment in the '90s called “The AIDS Update” where he mocked gay men who died from the disease. He also targeted actor Michael J. Fox, claiming he faked his Parkinson’s symptoms.
“I’m not a Rush Limbaugh fan; I don’t even listen to him,” said Hilton. “So I’ve read some of the things that she has shared that she dislikes about him, and other people have shared, and I agree with their dislikes about him, but I don’t revel -- as the president of a village -- revel in his death.”
“I didn’t like his views,” said Rock. “I didn’t like the method he projected his views. I’m not a Rush Limbaugh fan.”
The screenshots from Fisk’s Facebook were sent to the FOX 17 Problem Solvers, so I reached out to the village. During an email exchange, Fisk told me she had no comment on her private statements and that her words are in no way affiliated with staff or the village itself.
But when I told her as a public figure that her private statements can be used against her, she responded, “I’m not a public figure of the township.”
Just minutes later she posted this apology on her public Facebook:
Fisk has since removed the personal posts and asked others who have the screenshots n to to send them out anymore. But that’s not enough for the women I spoke with.
“She isn’t fit for public office if she expresses her views in that manner,” said Rock.
“She’s a public figure, she represents my village, and you have to be accountable,” said Hilton.
“For her to do that was just wrong,” said Pullen.
Those I’ve talked with say if Fisk doesn’t step down by Tuesday, they’ll be going to the village meeting to address the board.
When asked for a comment from FOX 17, Middleville Village Manager Patricia Rayl said, “She has her First Amendment right to freedom of expression on her own personal page, but as we are seeing, there may be political ramifications for exercising that right."