Scott Walker has had a nightmare of a Friday. He’s has been running around the state spinning his bum off to no avail. He has admitted starting a legal defense fund, which one can only do if one is under investigation in the state of Wisconsin. But Scott is saying he’s doing it save everyone money. He says the job numbers are going in the right direction, but a closer look tells a “troubling” story about his polices. A close aide waives her preliminary trial on four felony counts and a temporary injunction was ordered on his voter ID law. Phew.
Walker said, “For nearly two years, Milwaukee County officials have been examining issues related to former employees of the County. I have repeatedly pledged my cooperation with that inquiry. I also made it clear that no public money has been used, or will be used, to pay for the attorneys needed to review documents and assist me in cooperating. To fulfill my commitment, I have today formed a legal fund to pay for the expenses incurred in cooperating with the inquiry. The fund will operate in accordance with the Wisconsin law authorizing these accounts, which was passed almost thirty years ago.”
Not so fast,
Palin. Er, Walker.
Two things: First of all, when an elected official wants their own legal team, it is usually to protect themselves (see Sarah Palin, 2008) from the transparency that comes with state funded legal defense. Second of all, in the state of Wisconsin, an elected official may only start a legal defense fund if they are being investigated for violations of one of two things: campaign finance or election practices.
Scott Walker has denied that he is being investigated (see his statement above). So, either he did not read the law he referenced in his statement, or he is even more incompetent than previously surmised. Or he is being investigated and he is continuing to dodge the issue and mislead the public. I’m betting on the latter.
WAOW reported, “When asked about that, a Walker campaign spokesman told The Associated Press he was looking into the matter.” So comforting.
Meanwhile, back in Walkerstan, one of his top aides waived her preliminary trial today and is being charged with four felony counts of campaigning on the taxpayer dime while working for Scott Walker during his tenure as county executive. We recall other aides pleading guilty.
But the spin goes on in Walkerland, where lack of job progress is called the “right direction.” Speaking on the job numbers reported Thursday by the Department of Workforce Development, Walker said, “(T)he jobs numbers and falling unemployment statistics released today show Wisconsin is headed in the right direction.” But wait…
The Stevens Point Journal reports:
But those gains were overshadowed by the state’s sluggish performance since Walker took office. Excluding thousands of jobs added in December 2010 but included in Walker’s total because of the way DWD tabulates numbers, the latest revisions show the state gained only 900 private-sector jobs since January 2011. It actually lost 12,500 total non-farm jobs, a number that includes public jobs.
“While current job estimates are promising, today’s revised actual numbers for the past year were worse than estimates, which is deeply troubling,” said state Assembly Minority Leader Peter Barca, D-Kenosha. “The fact remains that job loss is the overall impact Gov. Walker and the Republicans’ economic agenda has had on Wisconsin.”
To top all of this off, a temporary injunction was put on Walker’s voter ID bill, arguably the most restrictive voter ID law in the country.
Is that the “right direction” for Wisconsin, too? Huh. Walker has wasted an epic amount of money on legislation that has actually negatively impacted the state’s deficit. So all of his radical activism is costing Wisconsin more than freedom, liberty and lawfulness. It’s costing big money.
Speaking of wasting money (as we so often do with the modern day Republican Party), is the Governor being investigated for violations of campaign finance laws or election practices, or both? It certainly wouldn’t be his first turn at cheating in an election. Walker got busted for breaking the rules in a college election and subsequently did not finish college.
If he is not under investigation, then why has he violated state law regarding setting up a legal defense fund?
And what about those job numbers and the voter ID law and the collective bargaining bill….Oh, never mind. I can see the governor has a lot on his mind right now.
Ms. Jones is the co-founder/ editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA and a member of the White House press pool.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.