State Government and Political News: Attorney wants fake Democrats removed from primary ballotWisconsin News
-- An attorney will ask state officials today to remove the fake Democrats whom the GOP put up to assure that all six recall elections will have their final voting on June 5.
MADISON - An attorney will ask state officials today to remove the fake Democrats whom the GOP put up to assure that all six recall elections will have their final voting on June 5.
Democratic attorney Jeremy Levinson will tell the Government Accountability Board it’s against the law for a person to run under one party only to help another. He calls it election fraud. The Board would take up the matter next week. If the fake Democrats are not allowed, three Republican state senators would have their general elections moved up to May eighth, because each would only have one Democratic challenger. The GOP says that would make the incumbents vulnerable, because a lot of Democrats will vote May eighth in the recall primary for governor. And the fake Democrats would assure primaries in all six contests, thus scheduling all the general elections on the same date in June. The GOP’s Ben Sparks says the fake Democrats ensure quote, “election fairness.” But the liberal group One Wisconsin Now has asked prosecutors to file felony charges against the fake Democrats, for violating sworn affidavits they filed promising to quote, “represent the Democratic Party.” Republican Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen said on Monday that the fake Democrats do not violate election laws.
Seven opponents filed nomination papers to run in the governor’s recall primaries on May eighth. Governor Scott Walker will have at least one GOP primary challenger – frequent Capitol protestor Arthur Kohl-Riggs, who joined the other candidates in filing his papers by yesterday’s deadline. Michael Mangan of West Allis also filed as a Republican, but he only had 303 valid signatures – far short of the 2,000 needed to get on the ballot. There were no surprises on the Democratic side. All four announced candidates filed – Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, former Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk, Secretary-of-State Douglas La Follette, and Senator Kathleen Vinehout of Alma. Fake Democrat Gladys Huber also filed. Kohl-Riggs said on his Web site that he’s running to discourage Republicans from crossing over in the primary and causing havoc in the Democratic race. Senate GOP leader Scott Fitzgerald of Juneau said there’s some sentiment for Republicans to vote for Falk, because polls indicate she wouldn’t do as well as Barrett against Governor Walker in June.
Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch of Oconomowoc will face one of five Democratic challengers in her recall contest. State fire union leader Mahlon Mitchell filed nomination papers by yesterday’s deadline, along with Marinette truck driver Bruce Berman, Milwaukee private investigator Ira Robins, and Portage prison guard Dale Paul. Fake Democrat Isaac Weix of Elmwood also filed for the May eighth primary. Kleefisch is the only Republican to file, and she’ll face the primary winner on June fifth.
Democrats only need to gain one Senate among the four that are up this spring to regain control of the upper house. And a full field of Democrats filed by yesterday’s deadline. Fort Atkinson photographer Lori Compas and fake Democrat Gary Ellerman filed to try and unseat Senate Republican Leader Scott Fitzgerald of Juneau. Former Senate Democrat John Lehman of Racine and fake Democrat Tamra Varebrook filed to try-and-recall Racine Republican Van Wanggaard. Former Assembly Democrat Kristen Dexter of Eau Claire and fake Democrat James Engel filed to try-and-defeat Chippewa Falls Republican Terry Moulton. And Wausau Assembly Democrat Donna Seidel goes up against fake Democrat Jim Buckley, with the winner to face Assembly Republican Jerry Petrowski. Petrowski is running for the state Senate seat given up by Wausau’s Pam Galloway, who was targeted for recall before she stepped down last month.
The State Justice Department and Governor Scott Walker have asked a federal judge to delay his order that struck down parts of the public union bargaining law. Judge William Conley ruled last month that state cannot cut off payroll deductions for those who choose to pay union dues – and they cannot require public unions to re-certify each year. But the state’s lawyers have asked Conley not to enforce his order until after they appeal his ruling – and they said they have a high probability of winning that appeal. Assistant attorney general Steven Kilpatrick and Walker attorney Eric McLeod said it would cause irreparable harm and cause confusion for many people if Conley’s order is enforced now. They said the case has complicated legal questions that an appellate court would have to review – and they said the unions who challenged the bargaining law would not be hurt by a delay.
A former Walker aide in Milwaukee County has replaced one of the lawyers for his embezzlement case. The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel said John Birdsall withdrew because of a dispute over his role in defending Tim Russell. Former state prosecutor Dennis Krueger took Birdsall’s place. Russell is scheduled to go on trial June 18th in Milwaukee County. He’s accused of stealing over $21,000 from an annual county event that honors Wisconsin veterans. And prosecutors said Russell took smaller amounts from two candidates for the Milwaukee County Board. Russell was a former deputy chief-of-staff when Scott Walker was the county executive. Russell was among the first to be charged as part of an ongoing John Doe investigation into Walker’s ex-county aides.
The only Democrat running for the U.S. Senate in Wisconsin has almost two-point-eight million dollars in her campaign fund. Madison House Democrat Tammy Baldwin tweeted yesterday that she raised over two-million dollars for her Senate bid during the first quarter of this year – and the money came from 24,000 small donors. Baldwin called it a strong show of support that is quote, “energizing our movement to fight for Wisconsin families.” Baldwin hopes to replace U.S. Senate Democrat Herb Kohl after he retires this year. Kohl has endorsed Baldwin, who will face the winner of the Republican primary on August 14th. One of those candidates, former Congressman Mark Neumann, said he has raised one-and-a-half million dollars since last August. He said he had 17,000 donors, and he did not put in any of the money himself. Neumann is running against former Governor Tommy Thompson, Assembly Speaker Jeff Fitzgerald of Horicon, and hedge fund manager Eric Hovde of Madison in the GOP primary.
The four Democrats who are running for governor in the Walker recall election will appear together tonight at another forum. Tom Barrett, Kathleen Falk, Kathleen Vinehout, and Doug La Follette all plan to appear at a program held in Madison by the Dane County Democratic Party. The four attended a union forum in Milwaukee last Thursday, and described the issues most important to them – including the restoration of funding cuts and mass transit. They all agreed that the rich must pay their fair share of taxes, and they said the Republicans’ “trickle down” economic theory doesn’t work.
The third governor in U.S. history to face a recall election made his first campaign swing around Wisconsin yesterday. Republican Scott Walker’s family and Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch held rallies in La Crosse, Eau Claire, Mosinee, Green Bay, Milwaukee, and a Dane County farm. Walker called the election a test of political courage in deciding which way the state will go. He contrasted his efforts to balance the state budget with those in neighboring Illinois – which he was said was plagued by deficits and tax increases. The governor touted the 17,000 private sector jobs created in Wisconsin in the first two months of this year. And he said he kept his campaign promises to reform the budget, and make tough decisions. Walker’s speeches did not specifically mention one of the main reasons for the recall – his bill that virtually eliminated collective bargaining for most state-and-local public employees. But he said the recall was forced by quote, “big government union bosses in Washington who want to take us backwards.” Walker will find out on May eighth who his challenger will be on June fifth. Four Democrats filed papers yesterday, and polls show that Tom Barrett and Kathleen Falk are the top challengers. Walker told reporters that all the Democrats have embraced policies that quote, “put Wisconsin backwards in the past.” He doesn’t have a preference for a final opponent. Walker said the candidate is secondary to the out-of-state union money that will be spent to try-and-defeat him.