Sorry about posting twice in a day, but this is just too delicious not to have a diary of it's own.
Scott Walker is having a bad day today. Not only has he had to try to walk back a bad case of foot in mouth statement yesterday as I've already brought to you, but some of the emails in the John Doe Probe have risen up to bite him in his posterior.
Yes, most of them are sealed under a secrecy order, but some were released by court order which involve a fatality in the O'Donnel Parking Structure which Milwaukee County owns during Scott Walkers reign as Milwaukee County Executive. The family of the victim are suing Milwaukee County over the incident and asked the judge for a court order for those John Doe emails.
If you remember the John Doe Probe at all you're aware that a lot of official Milwaukee County business that wasn't conducted using official Milwaukee County email servers. Instead, a secret router was installed and staffers, including Walker, used private email accounts to avoid the Open Records requirement for archiving communications. Those emails were uncovered during the John Doe Probe.
And the released emails demonstrate that Walkers gubernatorial campaign was actually running the County Executives Office.
Earlier this year, Walker's spokesman emphasized that most of the contact between Walker's top campaign and county aides dealt with "routine" matters.Oops (again)!
In the new emails, Gilkes is often directing Walker's county staff on what to do.
Tom Nardelli, Walker's county chief of staff, became so frustrated that he wrote to Walker and his top county aides on July 8, 2010, and felt compelled to remind them that he was still chief of staff.
“Just in case anyone cares what I think as COS, let me assure you all that Open Records Requests will be handled as they have always been handled: Timely, courteously and with the detail Corporation Counsel requires both upon receipt and upon release.”
“Any questions?” Nardelli wrote. "Direct them to me in this office only!”
He signed the email: "Tom Nardelli, Chief of Staff (remember?)."
Walker was asked about it today and, of course, some BS fell out of his mouth.
Gov. Scott Walker said Tuesday that his top campaign staffers began advising and directing his Milwaukee County aides on their response to the 2010 O'Donnell Park tragedy because Walker's political foes were trying to hijack the issue.
"Literally, within moments -- I think even that day in your paper's story -- there were comments from people involved in other campaigns," Walker said during a Tuesday press briefing. "So it involved the campaign not by virtue of us but by others who brought it up."
But some of his aides' emails suggest they were doing more than responding to other candidates.
Instead, they were focused primarily on fending off any negative publicity during the 2010 governor's race. For instance, Keith Gilkes -- Walker's campaign manager -- told a Walker county staffer in a June 24, 2010, email "to make sure there is not a paper any where that details a problem at all."
The newly released emails show Walker was at the center of this small circle of campaign staff and county aides who decided how to respond to news stories, media inquiries and records requests after a concrete panel fell from the O'Donnell parking structure, killing a 15-year-old boy on June 24, 2010.
One might ask why Walkers campaign and staff wanted to suppress reporting. The answer, simple enough, is that Walker deferred maintainence on all County buildings while he was in office which may have had something to do with a chunk of concrete falling down and killing someone. And who wants pesky questions asked of a candidate for Governor who only wanted to talk about his promise of jobs, jobs, jobs for Wisconsin along with how awesomely he had handled his job as Milwaukee County Executive?
He diverted funds for care and uptake of buildings towards other areas to the point that we just had an electrical fire at our Courthouse because no attention had been paid to the over 40 year old wiring there for far too long. And due to the slashing of state revenue sharing as well as payouts for lawsuits Walker himself caused by firing workers and trying to replace them with privatization, Milwaukee County has had trouble just keeping the lights on. The courthouse was mainly closed for a week and is slowly returning to normal as the damage from the fire is being dealt with.
Poor Snotty. Getting asked questions both on his "foot in mouth" on expanding union busting to the unions that endorsed him and on this private email revelation must have his head swimming. The press? His buddies? Asking actual questions of him? Sure, they're stenographing his talking points as fast as possible and putting them at the top of their article without follow up questions, but they're asking! Questions! Bwahahahaha!
For a guy used to having everything go his way, this has been a bad, bad day.
On top of all this, the Solidarity SingaLong, despite his use of massive police arrests, just keeps growing every day. And got national coverage by Ed Schultz on Sunday. The arrests continued today and the arrests look like the use of goon squads in a tin pot tyranny.
Don't worry, Walker supporters. The Journal Sentinel is still as Walker-loving as always. This story doesn't (and won't) appear in the actual newspaper to inform the public about these important revelations. It's in their online blog only.
So I'm going to spread the word since they won't.
I'm hoping that the rest of those emails get released sometime, but I'm not holding my breath. Who knows what treasure we'd find in that mountain of "private" communication. What we've seen already has been jaw dropping.