Don’t miss John’s post on the Democrats’ ongoing efforts to drive conservatives out of politics. Next door in Wisconsin we have an example in small of the Democrats’ skullduggery, combining the use of campaign finance regulation, a lawless witch hunt by partisan prosecutors conducting a John Doe investigation and the possible connivance of the state’s Government Accountability Board (i.e., the regulatory agency enforcing the state’s campaign finance law).
The victims of the investigation including the Wisconsin Club For Growth have fought back, filing a lawsuit in federal court in which the legality of the investigation is challenged. Judge Randa has entered a preliminary injunction shutting down the investigation. John also wrote about the proceedings in “The latest Scott Walker smear, debunked.”
The victims of the Wisconsin investigation have asserted civil rights claims against the prosecutors. M.D. Kittle updates readers on the latest action in the lawsuit. On Monday, Kittle reports, the Seventh Circuit upheld Judge Randa’s preliminary injunction. Enter the Government Accountability Board, against whom plaintiffs in the federal lawsuit now seek to add a claim for declaratory relief:
Given the rapidly evolving events surrounding the John Doe investigation, O’Keefe and the Wisconsin Club for Growth late Monday asked the U.S. District Court to amend the civil rights lawsuit.
First, the plaintiffs have sought to add the members of the Government Accountability Board, as well as Kevin Kennedy, the agency’s director, to the lawsuit.
Late last month, O’Keefe and the club filed a lawsuit in Waukesha County Circuit Court against the GAB. They claim the agency, which oversees state campaign and election law, overstepped its authority while cobbling together a “Frankenstein’s monster” of campaign finance law that does not exist in state statute. And they charge that the accountability board’s improper involvement in the investigation has unnecessarily cost taxpayers untold amounts of money.
The prosecutors in court documents, outed, if you will, the GAB and its involvement in the John Doe probe, that the agency has been “acting in concert” with the prosecutors in “perpetrating the investigation,” according to the federal court filing, submitted Monday.
O’Keefe’s attorney notes in the court documents that his client did not and could not have known that information at the filing, “given defendant Chisholm’s representations that GAB was not involved in the investigation.”
The plaintiffs also point to the 7th Circuit’s ruling on May 14 that declared unconstitutional the portions of Wisconsin campaign finance law that relate to issue advocacy advertising, like the kind Wisconsin Club for Growth and the other conservative targets are involved in.
That decision “confirms” Randa was “correct in enjoining the defendants['] investigation, which sought to apply Wisconsin campaign-finance regime to Plaintiffs’ issue advocacy” when the laws exclusively apply to express advocacy, according to the motion to amend the civil rights suit. Express advocacy involves messages in direct support or opposition of a candidate; issue advocacy does not endorse or oppose a candidate.
So O’Keefe and the club seek a declaration from the court that the coordination theories of the prosecutors and the GAB are invalid, and they hope to include the allegations to “supply substantive support” for declaratory relief — the judge’s determination of the rights of the parties of the lawsuit.
The prosecutors and Nickel have repeatedly declined to comment on the matter. A GAB spokesman has also declined to comment on the agency’s role in the John Doe probe.