Inline image 1

Midway through the first week of early voting in Wisconsin, the Democratic Party is continuing our series of reasons for voters to cast their ballots early and say no to Scott Walker on Election Day. 

New emails released by the Milwaukee County government yesterday shed a brand new light on suspected coordination between Walker’s gubernatorial campaign and county government administration, including the surprising revelation that a campaign aide approved a county government statement denying coordination between the two staffs.

The 16,000 emails and John Doe related documents released on Tuesday were a reminder that Scott Walker has been under investigation since he was elected in 2010. 

Not a single day during his first term has gone by where Scott Walker hasn't been involved in a criminal corruption probe.  

  • Scott Walker has spent more than one million dollars on his criminal defense related to the criminal corruption probe. Walker is the only sitting governor in state history to ever require a criminal defense fund. [1]

  • The first John Doe investigation resulted in convictions for six of Walker’s top aides and long-time associates for crimes, committed on his watch, ranging from felony misconduct in public office to theft of charity funds. Four Walker aides received prison sentences. [2]

  • Documents related to the first John Doe shined light on a group, referred to as the “inner circle” by top Walker-aide Cindy Archer, comprised of Scott Walker and top advisers to both his campaign and County administration. The group coordinated every single day to keep the county executive's office "in sync" with the campaign’s "image." [3]

  • Documents related to the first John Doe also revealed the extent to which Walker intentionally blurred the lines between campaigning for governor and serving the people of Milwaukee County. [4]

  • During the course of the first John Doe investigation five prosecutors, both Republicans and Democrats, found evidence sufficient to commence further investigation into illegal campaign activity between Walker’s campaign and independent right-wing groups, otherwise known as the second John Doe investigation.
     
  • A special prosecutor alleged that Walker was at the center of a nationwide “criminal scheme” to illegally coordinate with approximately 29 outside special interest groups like Wisconsin Club for Growth. [5]

  • Documents released in relation to the second John Doe show an email from Scott Walker to Karl Rove explaining his top campaign aide, R.J. Johnson, was leading a coordination effort to raise and spend funds for Scott Walker's recall campaign. [6]

  • The documents also showed R.J. Johnson openly discussed the Walker campaign coordinating with outside groups - even claiming that the Walker campaign “owned” Club for Growth. [7]

  • Special investigator Dean Nickel discussed information that Gogebic Taconite (GTAC), and out-of-state mining corporation donated $700,000 to Club for Growth for Scott Walker. Nickel claimed “there is certainly an appearance of corruption in light of the resulting legislation from which it benefited.” [8]

Background:
[1] “Gov. Scott Walker’s campaign reported spending more than $320,000 in legal fees on a campaign finance report filed Monday, bringing the total spent since 2012 to more than $1 million.” (Scott Walker's campaign-funded legal fees top $1 million since 2012, Wisconsin State Journal, 7/23/14)

[2] “The investigation – resulting in six convictions – involved embezzlement, money laundering and staffers mixing state business with a campaign effort to get Walker, then a Milwaukee county executive, to the governor’s mansion.” (Walker Scandal: Who Got Convicted and Why, NBC News, 2/21/14)

[3] " ‘Consider yourself now in the 'inner circle,'’ Walker's administration director, Cynthia Archer, wrote to Walker aide Kelly Rindfleisch just after the two exchanged a text message in March 2010.”(Emails link Scott Walker to secret email system, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 2/19/14)

[4] “Even county business was conducted largely on private emails, often with the Friends of Walker campaign staff included. Hiring and firing decisions, crafting the county budget and responding to several crises during his 2010 run for the governor’s office all were coordinated between Walker’s campaign and county staff.” (Emails show how Scott Walker blurred lines between campaign and county business, Wisconsin State Journal, 2/21/14)

[5] “In the documents, prosecutors laid out what they call an extensive "criminal scheme" to bypass state election laws by Walker, his campaign and two top Republican political operatives — R.J. Johnson and Deborah Jordahl.” (John Doe prosecutors allege Scott Walker at center of 'criminal scheme', Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 6/19/14)

[6] “The documents include an excerpt from an email in which Walker tells Karl Rove, former top adviser to President George W. Bush, that Johnson would lead the coordination campaign. Johnson also is Walker's longtime campaign strategist and the chief adviser to Wisconsin Club for Growth, a prominent conservative group” (John Doe prosecutors allege Scott Walker at center of 'criminal scheme', Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 6/19/14)

[7] “The newly released emails include some provocative statements: at one point Johnson is quoted as declaring ‘we own the Club for Growth.’” (Scott Walker and the Club for Growth: Coordinating Corruption, Huffington Post, 6/19/14)

[8] “Gov. Scott Walker prodded outside groups and individuals to funnel millions of dollars into Wisconsin Club for Growth — a pro-Walker group directed by his campaign adviser — during the recall elections in 2011 and 2012” (Walker wanted funds funneled to Wisconsin Club for Growth, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 8/22/14)

View this release online here: 

# # #