Total Recall: Attack ads attacked
Post by Jesse Russell on 11/16/2011 12:21pm
Complaints and illegal campaigning accusations are already flying not even one week into the statewide effort to collect enough signatures to recall Governor Scott Walker, Lt. Governor Rebecca Kleefisch, and four GOP state senators. The most recent complaint comes from the Democratic Party of Wisconsin which is charging Kleefisch with attempting to mislead constituents with a YouTube video that isn't properly marked as a campaign video. The video, called "The Value of a Signature," alleges that the cost of recalling the Governor to taxpayers is $7.7 million.
The lawsuit alleges the video violates state statutes 11.30(2)(b), 19.41, and 19.45 because the video "contains no such 'Paid for by' identification and instead bears an identification stating, 'Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch Forward,' leaving viewers the impression that the video is an executive communication from the Lieutenant Governor."
Under statute 11.30(2)(b) such communications are required to declare how it was paid for. The other two statutes deal with using a public position for personal gain or to influence "advantages or privileges personally or for others."
A second controversy is circling a commercial that aired during the Green Bay Packers game on November 14 and features Waukesha School Board member Karin Rajnicek. In the commercial Rajnicek appears to speak on behalf of the school board while touting how the district has benefit from reforms implemented by Walker. The website Blogging Blue alleges Rajnicek is possibly violating board policies by not stating in the commercial that she isn't speaking on behalf of the board.
The policy states: "When speaking to the public or press, individual board members must state that they are representing their own personal view, as a single member of the board, and should clearly identify the fact that they are expressing a personal opinion and are not speaking or implying that they are speaking on behalf of the Board. Individual board members should defer to the Board President or Superintendent in areas where a district position statement is required."
Waukesha Patch has sought an explanation from both Rajnicek and board President Dan Warren, but neither are willing to comment specifically on the potential policy violation.
The Waukesha School District saw a state funding decrease this year of $5 million, but were able to offset much of that loss through a $10.4 million settlement with RBC Capital Markets. The Securities and Exchange Commission charged the bank for "misconduct for selling unsuitably risky investments to five Wisconsin school districts."
Jesse was born and raised in Connecticut, began blogging in 1997, and moved to Madison in 2003. In 2005, he co-founded dane101 along with Kristian Knutson and Shane Wealti. In addition to helping nearly a dozen contributors run this website he's helped launch various events in the city including What's Your Damage?!, the MadPubQuiz of Awesomeness, the Fire Ball Masquerade, Dane101's Freakin' Halloweekend, and more.