Corruption Update: Wisconsin John Doe Investigation Was Full-Blown Anti-Conservative Fishing Expedition

Revealed: Wisconsin John Doe Investigation Was Full-Blown Anti-Conservative Fishing Expedition – Legal Insurrection

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We’ve covered the abusive anti-conservative Wisconsin “John Doe” proceedings many times before.

The short story is that two separate proceedings were commenced under the auspices of Democratic District Attorneys in order to try to take down Scott Walker.

John Doe No. 1 concerned Walker’s time as County Executive and ended without finding any wrongdoing by Walker himself.

John Doe No. 2 concerned Walker’s time as Governor and recall election. Both a state court judge and a federal judge found that even if everything the investigators claimed was true, it was not illegal. This John Doe No. 2 resulted in a federal lawsuit by two of the targets alleging that the investigators violated the targets’ constitutional rights.

Some documents released Friday by the federal Court of Appeals reveal just how abusive this John Doe No. 2 was.

The investigators conducted a widespread fishing expedition through the otherwise private records of numerous conservative activists, as described by M.D. Kittle of Wisconsin Reporter, who has followed the case more closely than anyone (h/t Instapundit):

‘Retaliation’: Docs show state prosecutors’ launched mini-NSA probe of state conservatives

Conservative targets of a Democrat-launched John Doe investigation have described the secret probe as a witch hunt.

That might not be a big enough descriptor, based on records released Friday by a federal appeals court as part of a massive document dump.

Attorneys for conservative activist Eric O’Keefe and the Wisconsin Club for Growth point to subpoenas requested by John Doe prosecutors that sought records from “at least eight phone companies” believed to serve the targets of the investigation. O’Keefe and the club have filed a civil rights lawsuit against John Doe prosecutors, alleging they violated conservatives’ First Amendment rights.

Subpoenas also demanded the conservatives’ bank records, “emails from every major private email provider” and other information in what some have described as a mini-NSA (National Security Agency) operation in Wisconsin.

“In fact, Defendants’ submissions confirm and expand upon the scope and intensity of retaliation previously demonstrated,” O’Keefe’s attorney wrote in documents ordered unsealed by the 7th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals.

The documents raise serious concerns about the tactics of Milwaukee County District Attorney John Chisholm, two of his assistant DAs and others involved in the investigation targeting dozens of conservatives.

We are in a dangerous place when prosecutors can identify the target first, and then try to find a crime.

Hey Wisconsin conservatives. You’re not paranoid, Democrats really are out to get you.

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Federal Judge Puts A Stop To Leftist Political Witch Hunt Of Conservative Groups In Wisconsin

Federal Judge Brings An End To Political Witch Hunt In Wisconsin – The Foundry

U.S. District Court Judge Rudolph Randa has put an end to a political witch hunt by local Wisconsin prosecutors that featured a secret investigation more reminiscent of a banana republic than the world’s foremost democracy. In two orders – one of which termed the prosecutors’ appeal of his decision as “frivolous” – Randa ordered local prosecutors to “cease all activities related to the investigation” and to return all of the records and documents they had seized from dozens of conservative advocacy organizations.

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Judge Randa concluded that local prosecutors, led by Milwaukee County District Attorney John Chisholm, a Democrat, were attempting to criminalize the political speech of about 30 conservative organizations, including Wisconsin Club for Growth. These prosecutors had instigated “a secret John Doe investigation replete with armed raids on homes to collect evidence.” The prosecutors were upset apparently over the organizations’ support of legislation pushed by Gov. Scott Walker, a Republican, to limit the collective bargaining rights of public employees. They claimed it was a criminal violation for independent organizations to engage in political speech and political advocacy in support of Gov. Walker’s proposed legislation. Judge Randa ruled the prosecutors had a “long-running investigation of all things Walker-related.”

Judge Randa’s description of the appalling tactics used by the prosecutors is shocking. The head of WCG, Eric O’Keefe, as well as his advisors and employees, were treated like members of a drug cartel. Armed officers conducted raids in the early morning hours, with sheriff deputy vehicles using “bright floodlights to illuminate” the activists’ homes. Deputies executed search warrants “seizing business papers, computer equipment, phones, and other devices, while their targets were restrained under police supervision and denied the ability to contact their attorneys,” the judge wrote. Just as bad, O’Keefe and the other targets of the investigation also were served with subpoenas that included a “Secrecy Order” telling them they could not reveal anything about the investigation or the seizure of their property and records “under penalty of perjury.”

According to Judge Randa, the list of advocacy groups subpoenaed by the prosecutors “indicates that all or nearly all right-of-center groups and individuals in Wisconsin who engaged in issue advocacy from 2010 to the present are targets of the investigation.” And yet because of the Secrecy Order, the victims of this prosecutorial abuse were unable to exercise their right to complain in public about an offensive investigation and obnoxious police tactics aimed at restricting their First Amendment rights to speak about important public policy issues.

Judge Randa said the prosecutors’ interpretation of the law was “simply wrong”:

“The defendants are pursuing criminal charges through a secret John Doe investigation against the plaintiffs for exercising issue advocacy speech rights that on their face are not subject to the regulations or statutes the defendants seek to enforce.”

Randa’s condemnation of the Wisconsin prosecutors was stinging. He said he was “left to wonder” if the prosecutors had “actually read the complaint” O’Keefe filed against them. He had “no idea why the defendants even attempted to raise” some of their defenses and characterized them as “the height of frivolousness.” Most importantly, the judge held that the prosecutors were not entitled to immunity from civil liability because they had acted without probable cause.

This means that not only has the judge put a halt to the criminal investigation being conducted by the prosecutors, but the lawsuit filed by O’Keefe against the prosecutors for violating his civil rights will go forward. The judgment could be substantial. O’Keefe said his organization lost $2 million as a result of the investigation, which “devastated” its ability to advocate for Walker’s reforms.

The use of the tremendous power given to law enforcement officials to target political speech they do not like is one of the greatest threats to our liberty and freedom of speech. Although the tactics these prosecutors used have now been rebuked in court, voters should remember this shameful behavior. And the Wisconsin legislature should immediately act to rid of the state of a statute that allows Star Chamber proceedings that impinge upon our cherished First Amendment rights.

Click HERE For Rest Of Story

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You Stay Classy Lefties

Pathetic!

Paul Walker, star of the Fast and Furious action-movie series, was killed at age 40 yesterday in a car accident. Reacting to the news, Erin Gloria Ryan, news editor of the feminist site Jezebel, decided to take a cheap partisan shot at the Republican governor of Wisconsin:

She apologized later for her “dumb joke”, and maybe she is sorry, but this happens way too often folks. Liberals see to be perpetually stuck on the low road. Maybe they should grow up at some point?

 

 

Liberalism is an ideology of convenience

Liberals have no problem with being outraged over certain things, like the influence of big money in politics, unless of course that big money comes from a George Soros. In short, their outrage is only displayed when it is convenient. Lisa Graves is a great example of the two-faced nature of Liberals. Stacy McCain sums her up pretty well

Lisa Graves is a Democrat Party hack who apparently believes it should be illegal to be a conservative, and who thinks that cooperation between conservatives is therefore a criminal conspiracy. Graves used to work for Democrat Sen. Patrick Leahy and the ACLU, but since 2009 has worked for the Center for Media and Democracy (CMD), a left-wing Wisconsin outfit whose funders include George Soros:

The website http://www.Banksterusa.org, for example, claims it wants “to be your go-to site for updates on the financial services re-regulation fight in Congress and for progressive net-roots campaigning against the big boys on Wall Street.” . . .
BanksterUSA.org is “part of the Center for Media and Democracy,” funded to the tune of $200,000 by the Open Society Institute, the charity arm of lefty investor George Soros.

In short big money is bad if it benefits Republicans, but good if it benefits Communists, or political prostitutes like Lisa Graves. McCain goes on to expose the hypocrisy of Graves

While taking money from Soros — a billionaire international financier — Graves and the CMD claim that money is a corrupting influence in politics if that money goes to conservatives: The Wisconsin Club for Growth is “at the center of a tangled web of dark money“!

This bizarre paranoid nonsense is all part of a dishonest smear against supporters of Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, who defeated a well-funded recall attempt by Democrats and their Big Labor allies in 2012.

In short, these goons see Walker as a credible threat to win in 2016, so they are launching preemptive strikes against him. I hope the GOP establishment takes note of my first rule of winning elections. Democrats ALWAYS attack candidates they fear, even if they are just likely candidates. Note, the Left never attacked McCain in 2008, or Romney in 2012 because they WANTED to run against them. After these men won the GOP nominations, THEN the attacks came.

 

Conservatives Who Backed Wisconsin Governor Walker Reportedly The Targets Of Secret Probe

Conservatives Who Backed Wisconsin Gov. Walker Appear Target Of Secret Probe – Fox News

Dozens of conservative groups that support Wisconsin Republican Gov. Scott Walker reportedly have been subpoenaed by a special prosecutor demanding donor lists and other documents pertaining to their backing of Walker’s union overhaul and recall fight.

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The so-called “John Doe” investigation bars those subpoenaed from talking publicly.

But Eric O’Keefe, director of the Wisconsin Club for Growth, told The Wall Street Journal recently that investigators have raided at least three homes and that he “wants the public to know what is going on,” despite the personal risk.

He also suggested the probe is having a chilling effect on conservative groups as Walker approaches a 2014 re-election effort.

He said the subpoenas, including the one he received in early October, “froze my communications and frightened many allies and vendors of the pro-taxpayer political movement in Wisconsin… The process is the punishment.”

Watchdog.org reported in late October that authorities were confiscating equipment and files from targets of the probe, and demanding phone and email records. Watchdog.org also reported this week that three of the unidentified targets have hired top First Amendment and campaign finance experts as part of their defense team.

The Journal piece states more than two dozen groups received subpoenas – ranging from the Walker campaign and state-level organizations such as O’Keefe’s and Wisconsin Family Action to the national Republican Governors Association and American Crossroads, co-founded by former Bush administration adviser Karl Rove.

This is the second time in less than four years that Walker has been investigated.

In 2010, Milwaukee County Democratic District Attorney John Chisholm investigated whether staffers for Walker, when he was county executive, used government offices for political purposes. The probe closed in February with findings that included an aide sending campaign email on government time but no charges against Walker.

Both probes were first reported by The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

The new investigation purportedly asks for donor information from nonprofit groups not required to reveal such information and follows revelations this spring that conservative-leaning groups seeking tax-exempt status from the IRS were also targeted for extra scrutiny.

It began in the office of Milwaukee County Assistant District Attorney Bruce Landgraf, according to the Journal, and is being led by special prosecutor Francis Schmitz. Landgraf did not return a call this week seeking comment, and Schmitz also could not be reached.

The author of the Journal article says that he has seen copies of two subpoenas related to the 2011-12 recall effort on Walker and state senators, and that one demands: “all records of income received, including fundraising information and the identity of persons contributing to the corporation.”

He writes the subpoenas don’t make clear a specific allegation but the demands suggest the government is looking at the possibility of independent groups illegally coordinating with candidate campaigns.

Click HERE For Rest Of Story

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Wisconsin the latest state to prove anti-concealed carry nuts jobs wrong

In 1987 Florida passed concealed carry legislation, and the Left predicted Wild West shootouts and streets running with blood. That has not happened, but violent crime has been reduced. In 1995, I moved here to Texas, and the debate over concealed carry was raging, with the same predictions of blood in the streets, etc. Well, again, those anti self-defense zealots were wrong, as they have been in Georgia, Arizona, and many other states that allow concealed carry. Bob Owens reports today that two years after Wisconsin passed their concealed carry law, the gun grabbers are still wrong

Two years after 200,000 Cheeseheads get concealed carry, EVERYONE in Wisconsin is dead, just as gun control cultists predicted.

Or not.

November 1 marks the second anniversary of the passing of the once high profile – and still highly contentious – Wisconsin concealed carry law, with more than 200,000 permits issued in that time. Just as noteworthy are the 5,800 permit applications that were denied for various reasons. The permit fee has also dropped to $40, down from $50 when Wisconsin became the 49th state to allow concealed carry two years ago.

In every state where “shall issue” concealed carry has been implemented over the past 20+ years, gun control fanatics have warned that every minor conflict and fender bender will turn into a combination of the OK Corral and the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre.

The fanatics, of course, give not the first damn about public safety, their twisted Collectivist minds just cannot tolerate armed Americans defending themselves. If it is one thing a Collectivist loathes, it is Individual liberty. These miscreants will only be sated when we are all wards of the State, and totally dependent on the government for everything, especially protection from criminals

 

Educators In Kenosha, WI Vote Overwhelmingly To Disband Teachers Union

Teachers Union Decertified In Wisconsin – American Thinker

Teachers in Kenosha, Wisconsin – the third largest school district in the state – have voted overwhelmingly to free themselves from the clutches of the teachers union, the Kenosha Education Association, which will now disband. Thanks to the reform bill, Act 10, pushed by Governor Scott Walker, public employee unions are limited to bargaining over base pay, and must be re-certified every year.

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Erin Richards of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel writes:

Teachers in Kenosha, as well as in Milwaukee and Janesville, all came under the authority of Act 10 starting July 1 when their teacher contracts expired. Under the law, the unions are required to file for annual re-certification by Aug. 30 if they wished to remain a recognized bargaining unit. (snip)

Christina Brey, speaking for the Wisconsin Education Association Council, downplayed recertification, calling it just another hoop for local unions to jump through.

Much more interesting details are provided by the MacIver Institute:

The Kenosha Education Association (KEA), the state’s third largest teachers union, was officially decertified on August 31, 2013 according to the Wisconsin Employment Relations Commission.

Mark Belling, who broke this story on Thursday, said that the decertification came after a recent vote by members in which only 37 percent voted to reauthorize the union.

KEA is the largest teachers union to disband since Act 10 was signed into law in 2011. The union had 2,400 members according to their website. Act 10 limited collective bargaining rights for public employees and required public unions to have an annual vote to recertify.

Let it sink in for moment: only a little more than a third of the Kenosha teachers wanted the union. By disbanding the union, their income goes up as they no longer are forced to pay dues, a large portion of which are then laundered into campaign funds for Democrat candidates. I do not know the exact amount of dues paid by Kenosha teachers, but I do know that teachers union dues typically are more than a thousand dollars a year.

If Act 10 reforms were adopted nationwide, the involuntary collection of money from government workers, and the laundering of said funds into Democrat campaign funds would be attenuated.

I am pro-choice when it comes to union membership. End the involuntary servitude to the union bosses.

Click HERE For Rest Of Story

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