Saturday, June 4, 2011

A Tale Of A Rat, A Snake And A Mole(man)

Sen. Kapanke describing
the money he is getting
from the Koch Bros.
Soon to be former State Senator Dan Kapanke just can't handle following ethical behavior.  Despite his already lengthy history of having ethics problems, he has gone and gotten himself entangled into another mess.

Dan Bice, one of the few people at Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that I still respect, reported on the latest apparent shenanigan from Kapanke:
In a newly obtained secret recording of the La Crosse County Republican Party meeting on May 25, party officials claim they talked with a staffer for Sen. Dan Kapanke and a top GOP official about taking steps to extend the campaign and delay the recall vote.

This conversation took place in the same meeting in which La Crosse County Republicans discussed running a spoiler candidate against Democrat Jennifer Shilling in an effort to delay the Kapanke's recall election. The move, they said, would give Kapanke more time to campaign and force Dems to spend more cash.
Of course, Kapanke backpedaled from this as fast as his little rat legs could carry him.

But Bice doesn't stop there. He also reports that the rat had talks with a snake as well:
But in the new recording, Chris Rochester, who oversees public relations for the La Crosse Republican Party, said, "I would just advise, I guess, having talked to Dan’s campaign manager, to make sure that as the process goes along, we know that it would be better for them to have an extended period of time."
La Crosse County Republican Party Vice Chairman Julian Bradley responds, "Yes, but this is a wish that comes from the RPW's political director, Mark Jefferson."

Jefferson is the former executive director of the state Republican Party who recently left to take a post with the national GOP. He could not be reached for comment.
So this is some part of the new WISGOP policy and procedures? It does bring one's mind back to Scott Walker's infamous phone call with the fake David Koch, where he admitted that they were considering using plants and where he asked Koch for help with trying to defend his corrupt and amoral allies in the state senate.

There has been some speculation on why WISGOP would want to delay the recall election and run a spoiler candidate. Some have hypothesized that it is to cause Jennifer Shilling, Kapanke's Democratic opponent, to spend money and get smeared before the election by someone else.  David Dayen of Firedoglake feels it more likely that they just want to hold onto their death grip of the government and the state longer to implement more of their profit and power grabbing laws.

This story takes an interesting twist as well.

The La Crosse Republican Party is planning on suing the person who videotaped* this particularly damning speech.  That's very much like a gang of thieves saying their going to sue the person who snitched on them and prevented a big heist they were planning.

Interesting, the people involved fall all over themselves in trying to deny that there was ever any sort of plot only to admit that they still might be planning on it (emphasis mine):
She again said the campaign is not seeking a candidate to challenge Shilling in a primary.
"It is not something the campaign is discussing with anybody," she said.
Harrington also said she had no knowledge of the county GOP's plan to sue the person who made the tape.
Wisconsin law says it is legal for a person to record a conversation if one party gives consent. It also says consent is not required if the person being recorded does not have a reasonable expectation of privacy in that communication.
Feehan, the party chairman, said that since Bradley made comments early in the meeting that it should not be recorded, the person who made the tape had broken the law.
"We're not going to take this laying down," Feehan said.
He also said there are some in the party still considering a spoiler candidate but declined to say if it was an official party strategy.
Now, I've dealt with these things long enough to see that they are saying that they're not talking now, but not they are not denying having talked about it at all, which could very well mean that they already have things in place.

Also, given their past behaviors with myself and Professor Cronon and others, their threat to sue seems more likely an attempt to distract from their own misdoings and push people's attention elsewhere.

This is really only throwing gas on the fire, but it also only emphasizes that the fact that La Crosse could run a discarded tennis shoe and receive better representation than they are from Kapanke.  He's as dirty as they come and really needs to go.

*Odd thing is I thought WISGOP loved themselves some molemen.

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