Charges In Investigation Requested by Walker Administration

Charges announced today as part of an ongoing John Doe investigation.

Three individuals – including a former top aide to Gov. Scott Walker – were charged Thursday with felonies as part of the ongoing John Doe investigation into Walker staffers.

Tim Russell, a longtime Walker campaign and county staffer, was charged with two felonies and one misdemeanor count of embezzlement. Milwaukee County District Attorney John Chisholm said the charges are tied to Operation Freedom, an annual military appreciation day held at the zoo.

Also charged Thursday was Brian Pierick, Russell’s longtime partner and a staffer at the state Department of Public Instruction, and Kevin Kavanaugh, Walker’s appointee to the Milwaukee County Veteran Service Commission.

The ongoing investigation was initiated by the Walker administration.

Chisholm said some of the stolen money was intended for the families of Wisconsin soldiers who were killed in action in Iraq and Afghanistan. Funds also were used for wounded veterans of the war in Iraq. In 2010, Walker’s county administration had asked prosecutors to investigate what had happened to $11,000 raised in 2007 for the event.

Chisholm announced the charges at a noon news conference, but said he could not take questions because of the ongoing investigation. He noted that Walker’s administration had asked for the investigation and said his office was following the evidence without regard to politics.

“We go where the evidence leads and partisan politics plays no role in any decision by this office,” Chisholm said.

Guess that won’t make liberals happy, who were likely hoping that it was Governor Walker who was being investigated.

Head over to the source for more details.

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Murphy leads by example

The  chairman of the Republican Liberty Caucus in Wisconsin was recently elected chair of the Southern Branch of the Milwaukee CountyRepublican Party.

In late January, Murphy won election uncontested after it became clear that he was going to win even if the establishment put up a candidate against him. Murphy and Vice-Chair Alfredo Rios joined several pro-liberty allies on the Milwaukee County GOP Party and, together, have been able to change some minds of members.

Michael Murphy is best known for his discovery of the “unwritten rule” among members of the Wisconsin Congressional delegation.  A rule unknown to many Republican party members.

The agreement is that incumbent Members of  Wisconsin Congressional Delegation will not campaign against each other. The agreement is between ALL members of the Wisconsin Congressional Delegation. In Wisconsin, there are three Democrat incumbents and five Republican incumbents, none of whom will mention each other by name (except in a positive light) in the 2012 election cycle as a result of this unwritten agreement.

The argument could easily be made that this agreement contributed to this:

Prior to November, an incumbent member of Congress had not lost in the state in over ten years and only four Members of Congress had lost in the Badger State in the last 28 years.

Being chairman of the Southern Branch  puts Murphy in the position to bring about change to the Republican Party from within, starting with shedding light on this “unwritten” rule.

As Chairman of the South Branch of the Milwaukee County GOP, Murphy introduced and passed a resolution condemning and disallowing the elected Republican members of Congress to participate in a sweetheart deal with Democrat incumbents.

Shortly before the Milwaukee County GOP Caucus, the Milwaukee County Resolutions Committee shot down Murphy’s resolution. Murphy took the resolution to the floor for delegates to hear. After explaining the “Unwritten Agreement”, he received support from delegates and even from members of the Resolutions Committee who previously discarded the proposal. The resolution was agreed to by the Milwaukee County GOP body.

Thanks to Murphy’s leadership on the issue it will be a topic at the state GOP convention in May.

The WIGOP Convention will occur on May 21, 2011, in Wisconsin Dells, at which time the State Resolutions Committee will consider the proposal. If passed by the Resolution Committee, the proposal will be listed in the WIGOP program for delegates to consider. Should the Resolutions Committee not adopt it, Murphy will introduce the measure from the floor, so delegates will have a say on it.

Many people at the grassroots level believe that changes are needed when it comes to how the GOP in Wisconsin does things.  For that change to happen from within, more people need to step up the way Michael Murphy did.

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