Sunday, April 21, 2013

“fraud, misrepresentation or misconduct”

By Jeff Simpson

That is what a 3 judge panel accused the Wisconsin republicans of engaging in, when looking into missing records in the Wisconsin redistricting case.

  It is appearing that AFTER they were ordered to turn over all files to the democrats, someone logged into the taxpayer owned computers and deleted hundreds of thousands of emails! 

New federal court filings allege that legislative aides appear to have deleted “hundreds of thousands” of files at “suspicious times” from state computers used by Republicans in redistricting.

The plaintiffs in a case that challenged the redistricting law are asking the Legislature or attorneys representing the state to start paying for the forensic investigation. They say the probe has racked up nearly $100,000 in costs so far, fueled largely by the complexity of restoring deleted files.

The filings are part of a post-trial investigation ordered by the three-judge federal panel that heard the redistricting case. A final report on the investigation is due May 10.

Finding that “fraud, misrepresentation or misconduct” likely occurred, the judges ordered a post-trial investigation into the missing records. In February, the panel ordered the state to turn over three redistricting computers that had been housed at the Madison office of the Michael, Best and Friedrich law firm.
 Predictably, the party of "personal responsibility"(yes, I know.  That is funny to me also) took none.  Scott Fitzgerald who will take any chance to ramble aimlessly on telling us how bad democrats are seems to have lost his tongue when it comes to fraud on his watch.  Robin Vos has forgotten anything that happened, and refers all questions to the Wisconsin taxpayer funded attorneys representing him in this misconduct.  

The computers were used by legislative aides Tad Ottman and Adam Foltz and consultant Joe Handrick. Ottman and Foltz work for Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R-Juneau), though Foltz worked for then-Assembly Speaker Jeff Fitzgerald (R-Horicon) at the time of redistricting. Handrick worked for lobbying and law firm Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren at the time he served as a redistricting consultant for the Legislature. Handrick, a former GOP representative, now works at the state Department of Workforce Development.

 For those scoring at home, a quick timeline of the events:

According to the filing, the first deletions came Jan. 6, 2012, just after attorneys for the state were ordered by the panel to turn over additional records in the case. The second deletions, on July 25, 2012, were made days after control of the Senate shifted to the Democrats as a result of recall elections in July 2012. (Republicans have since regained the majority in the Senate.)

“On July 18, 2012, after majority control of the state Senate shifted, the new majority leader (Democratic Sen. Mark Miller) requested Michael Best’s redistricting file,” the filing states.

“The following day (July 19), Michael Best agreed that it would make its redistricting file available for review. One week later (July 25), a user logged into the account of Tad Ottman, aide to state Senator Scott Fitzgerald — who just had been replaced as majority leader — deleted hundreds of thousands of redistricting files.

“The following week, Michael Best turned over its redistricting file to the new Senate majority leader (Miller).”
The republicans have sure ruined the name brand of Michael Best over these last two years!  It also amazes me that Ottman and Foltz still have jobs being funded by the taxpayers.  Is there not a fireable offense for the republicans? 
If you think fraud, directly defying court orders and deleting emails that the public have a right to know, then call these people up and let them know! 
Scott Fitzgerald -  (608) 266-5660 @senfitzgerald
Robin Vos -  @speakervos
Toll Free:  888-534-0063
Madison Office:  608-266-3387
Home Phone:  262-514-2597

And even Joe Handrick, who was the "consultant" who helped consult that secrecy agreements, partisan redistricting and engaging in fraud was the way to go about representing the people of WI, has been rewarded with a nice cushy taxpayer funded state job and taxpayer funded state benefits in the Department of Workforce Development!

Joe can be reached at @joeminocqua or  (608) 267-8997

The Wisconsin Republican Party has no shame!   


  1. Brilliant minds think alike. Let's also remember that the GOP leggies testified that politics played no part in the maps. So we have perjury along with obstruction of justice and violations of open records laws to deal with.

    Real question is- will this result in more or less than the 6 convictions associated with John Doe? I'm going over.

  2. great post Jake. Im going under. My bet is they throw Tad and Adam to the wolves and pretend they acted on their own accord.

    Move along nothing to see here.....just two overly ambitious little nerdy aides overstepping their boundaries.

  3. What makes anyone reading this think that there will be ANY repercussions from this? This is just normal business in Walker's Wisconsin. Republicans in Wisconsin are ABOVE the law. No one, not even some FEDERAL JUDGES can hold Wisconsin Republicans to the rule of law. The Wisconsin Supreme Court, the Wisconsin Legislature, the Wisconsin Governor's office all are ABOVE the rule of law. They can do whatever they want, lie, destroy evidence, no one can touch them. No one. Don't like the reality?? Then leave Wisconsin because NOTHING is going to change.

  4. Anonymous @ 12:12 - I disagree. The WisGOP have ticker-off three Federal judges, two of whom are Republican-appointed judges. Vos & Fitzgerald are NOT above the law, no matter how much they might believe that. They are at the end of their rope, evidenced by their attack on the G.A.B. which is also investigating an ethics complaint against 43 WisGOP (behavior of WisGOP which was coordinated by Speaker Vos...which is a RICO charge in and of itself). Michael Best Friedrich is in the dirt as well, which is why the WisGOP needed a lawyer (Whyte, et. al.) for their lawyer (MBF). When you need a lawyer for your lawyer, things are NOT going well.

  5. RIGHT. This is not left up to some DA who will wimp out at the thought of going to trial against big-money types (I'm looking at you, John Chisholm). These are federal judges who have been lied to in this cover-up, and they will not let these guys get away with only having 2 leggie aides take the fall. And if these judges have any respect for the law at all, they'll toss the maps out.

    We're gonna see what these guys did, and who gave the order.

  6. It's unfortunate the Federal Justice System can't move as fast as the snakes in Madison.

  7. Anyone who thinks that Wisconsin Republican politicians and aides obey the orders of mere Federal judges, is dreaming. This fight isn't just some politicans vs Federal Law, this fight is politicians backed by 100's of millions of dollars in campaign contributions vs 3 federal judges. The Wisconsin Supreme Court is bought and paid for. What do you think is going to happen to the Federal investigation? Nothing. Money talks.

    Guys, this didn't start with Walker. The roots of Wisconsin Republican corruption date back years. Look at 2006. Anxious to tie Jim Doyle to corruption, then Fed. prosecutor Biskupic arrested an innocent woman, made up some phony charges against her, and threw her in jail for months, all to give Wisconsin Republican Mark Green a campaign issue to run on.

  8. Agreed that these guys won't fight fair or care about the law. But that doesn't mean they can't drilled for doing so.

    And that certainly doesn't mean we can't drill them for it, either. The "we're above the law" mentality is also why Republcans want to limit recalls to "criminal behavior" because they 1. Hate having to answer to the public for anything and 2. They think they can buy their way out of any criminal accusations that are out there (as Walker did with John Doe).

    And if the law doesn't do the job, there are other ways we can handle it (and we should be prepared to do so). But shrugging and saying "that's the way it is" only guarantees that they will continue to try to cheat and lie.