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- Posted on May 16th 2012 2:30PM by Jason MacNeil
Michael Buckner, Getty
"We just got word that Wisconsin State Rep and Speaker of the State Assembly Jeff Fitzgerald used 'Shipping Up to Boston' as his walk-on song yesterday at the Wisconsin GOP Convention in Green Bay," the band wrote in a Facebook post. "The stupidity and irony of this is laughable. A Wisconsin Republican U.S. Senate candidate -- and crony of anti-Union Governor Scott Walker -- using a Dropkick Murphy song as an intro is like a white supremacist coming out to gangsta rap!"
The group continued by saying that if Fitzgerald and his staff "can't even figure out your music you might wanna give up on the politics!!!!!" Dropkick Murphys finished by stating their support of the union movement in Wisconsin and across the U.S.
What makes the incident even odder is that the song is based in part by lyrics of folk icon and noted union proponent Woody Guthrie.
Approximately 80 minutes into a video clip taken from the state convention Saturday shows a video introduction with Fitzgerald speaking before there's a break in recording. However, the tail end of the band's song is clearly audible with Fitzgerald at the dais.
"Well, how's that for a little change on the music," the politician says before commencing his speech.
Late last night, following over 1,000 comments on their Facebook page regarding the post, the group added another statement on the page.
"Ummm...if this man had asked permission like he should have we would have declined the request and none of this would be taking place on here," the band wrote. "So weather you agree with our politics or not is irrelevant...it's really a copyright issue!!!!"
Last year the group went so far as to release the song "Take 'Em Down" as a single to support the unions in Wisconsin who were under threat by the state legislature. According to the Cap Times the group also created a t-shirt with the song's title with sales benefiting the Workers' Right Emergency Response Fund.
The Dropkick Murphys mount a European tour in early June but will be part of a special "Red Sox Night" at Boston's Symphony Hall on May 24 by performing with the Boston Pops. The concert is to celebrate Fenway Park's centennial anniversary. The group released its last studio album Going Out In Style in 2011.