Government and Political Roundup: More legislators wants answers about the botched operation in MilwaukeeWisconsin News
-- The House judiciary chairman and three other congressional leaders are demanding answers about the A-T-F’s botched operation in Milwaukee.
The House judiciary chairman and three other congressional leaders are demanding answers about the A-T-F’s botched operation in Milwaukee. They fired off a seven-page letter yesterday to Todd Jones, the acting director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives. The congressional leaders want written answers to over two dozen questions about a fake business set up by the A-T-F in Milwaukee called Fearless Distributing. It was designed to take in illegal guns and drugs. But the Journal Sentinel said somebody burglarized the place after it was open for 10 months and stole 35-thousand dollars’ worth of items, including an agent’s machine gun. And the A-T-F left the building with thousands of dollars in damage, while leaving a sensitive document behind. Milwaukee Police Chief Ed Flynn said his department and the A-T-F are still looking for the stolen machine gun. House Judiciary Chairman Robert Goodlatte wrote the leader which demanded answers, along with House Crime Sub-committee chairman Jim Sensenbrenner of Menomonee Falls, House Oversight panel chairman Darrell Issa, and ranking Democrat Charles Grassley on the Senate Judiciary Committee. Wisconsin Senate Republican Ron Johnson wrote a separate letter to the A-T-F, and Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett also wants an investigation. He’s especially concerned about the stray document – which included personal information about the agents in the operation. The mayor said the A-T-F got sloppy, and it put people’s lives in danger. Thirty people were arrested, although the Journal Sentinel said charges were sought against three of the wrong people. The operation also seized 145 guns.
Governor Scott Walker has around 800-thousand-dollars in the bank for his next election in 21 months. The Republican governor said yesterday that he raised 474-thousand dollars in the last half of 2012, soon after winning his recall election in June. And Walker had 794-thousand dollars in his campaign fund at the start of the New Year. That’s a sizable amount, but it’s not nearly as much as the 29-and-a-half million he raised in the first half of last year, in the months leading to the June recall contest. Walker filed a complete financial report yesterday with the state elections’ agency. His campaign released a summary, but the breakdown of contributions was not immediately available.
Wisconsin legislators will soon get a harvest of input from farmers they represent. The Farm Bureau Federation’s “Ag Day” is normally one of the biggest lobbying events of the year – and this year, it’s set for March 6th. It starts with a lunch at Monona Terrace in Madison, where farmers will hear from a couple of lawmakers. Then, the group will take a one-block walk to the State Capitol to meet with their own Assembly and Senate representatives. The Farm Bureau says the major topics will deal with the economics of agriculture, animal welfare, and environmental concerns. Those attending are urged to make their own appointments with their lawmakers in advance.