Blockbuster revelation by someone who worked in the prosecutor’s office.
We have covered the onslaught unleashed by Democratic District Attorney John Chisholm on Governor Scott Walker and conservatives in Wisconsin many, many times.
We note the obsessive nature of the investigation, and how it seemed that Chisholm found the man — Scott Walker — and was searching for the crime.
In a blockbuster revelation, Stuart Taylor at Legal Newsline reports that Chisholm’s wife, who is a union operative, may be the motivating force, District attorney’s wife drove case against Wis. Gov. Walker, insider says:
…. Walker became a national figure in 2011, when his “Budget Repair” bill cut state spending and sharply curbed public employee unions — perhaps the biggest reversal of public union power in U.S. history. Conservatives were delighted and liberals alarmed.
Now a longtime Chisholm subordinate reveals for the first time in this article that the district attorney may have had personal motivations for his investigation. Chisholm told him and others that Chisholm’s wife, Colleen, a teacher’s union shop steward at St. Francis high school, a public school near Milwaukee, had been repeatedly moved to tears by Walker’s anti-union policies in 2011, according to the former staff prosecutor in Chisholm’s office. Chisholm said in the presence of the former prosecutor that his wife “frequently cried when discussing the topic of the union disbanding and the effect it would have on the people involved … She took it personally.”
Citing fear of retaliation, the former prosecutor declined to be identified and has not previously talked to reporters.
Chisholm added, according to that prosecutor, that “he felt that it was his personal duty to stop Walker from treating people like this.”
Chisholm was referring to Gov. Walker’s proposal – passed by the legislature in March 2011 – to require public employee unions to contribute to their retirement and health-care plans for the first time and to limit unions’ ability to bargain for non-wage benefits.
Chisholm said his wife had joined teachers union demonstrations against Walker, said the former prosecutor. The 2011 political storm over public unions was unlike any previously seen in Wisconsin. Protestors crowded the State Capitol grounds and roared in the Rotunda. Picketers appeared outside of Walker’s private home. There were threats of boycotts and even death to Walker’s supporters. Two members of the Wisconsin Supreme Court almost came to blows. Political ad spending set new records. Wisconsin was bitterly divided.
Still, Chisholm’s private displays of partisan animus stunned the former prosecutor. “I admired him [Chisholm] greatly up until this whole thing started,” the former prosecutor said. “But once this whole matter came up, it was surprising how almost hyper-partisan he became … It was amazing … to see this complete change.”
The culture in the Milwaukee district attorney’s office was stoutly Democratic, the former prosecutor said, and become more so during Gov. Walker’s battle with the unions. Chisholm “had almost like an anti-Walker cabal of people in his office who were just fanatical about union activities and unionizing. And a lot of them went up and protested. They hung those blue fists on their office walls [to show solidarity with union protestors] … At the same time, if you had some opposing viewpoints that you wished to express, it was absolutely not allowed.”
This revelation comes the very day there is an appeal being argued in the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals in a lawsuit brought by two of the targets of the investigation.
A federal court District Judge enjoined the John Doe proceeding and allowed the lawsuit to continue against the prosecutors in their individual capacities (since technically, they were acting as investigators not prosecutors and therefore cannot claim immunity).
At a minimum, there needs to be a criminal investigation of how the John Doe assault on Walker and conservatives was launched and whether politics was the motivation.DONATE
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