February 7, 2012
Somebody should be in trouble
Almost beyond comprehension! At the center of an ethical nightmare, one will find Michael, Best and Friederich. The headline in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reads as follows: "Lawmakers made to vow secrecy over redistricting."
As legislative leaders secretly developed new election maps last year to strengthen their majority, "Republican lawmakers were told to ignore public comments and instead focus on what was said in private strategy sessions, according to a GOP memo that became public Monday."
Almost all Republican lawmakers signed legal agreements promising not to discuss the new maps while they were being developed. They tried to hide the documents and to stop release of them but a three-judge court, in the strongest language I have seen in my professional life, slapped the lawyers at MB&F with financial penalties and ordered the release of the documents.
All the agreements were signed by Eric McLeod of MB&F. His firm was not doing this pro bono. No, it was being paid $400,000 by the taxpayers!
JS reminds us that McLeod was the lawyer providing free legal services to Justice Gableman. The conclusion was that M&F gave tens of thousands of legal advice to Gablemen. Mike Ellis said that never in his career had he been asked to sign a confidentiality agreement.
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Had all this surfaced during last summer's recalls, would the results have been different?
-Pietr Haikuu | Hurley, Wisc. | February 7, 2012
This latest affront to democracy--a redistricting plan written by a union-busting law firm: Michael, Best and Friedrich--shows the disdain for dissent by the Republican majority in the Wisconsin Legislature & of course, Governor Walker. The redistricting plan to gerrymander districts to consolidate their power is another example of an action not representing the best interests of the entire state.
Rather, the Republican party of Wisconsin does not want dissent; they only want to crush their opponents: the Democrats, the unions, and the millions of citizens who signed recall petitions to remove Governor Scott Walker and Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kfleefisch from power.
Luckily, we have a third branch of government, the courts, to SOMETIMES, provide a check on legislative and executive power.
How far we have fallen from James Madison's philosophical words on Constitutional power: "In the clash of ideas, only those embodying the public good should prevail."
Hopefully, we the people, can redeem ourselves, somewhat, with the recall of Walker and Kleefisch.
-Steven Arvid Anderson | Appleton, Wisconsin | February 7, 2012