President Trump isn’t the only one who has felt the bite of Liberal Witch Hunt and Strong Arm Tactics.
Here is solid proof that under the last administration conservatives who were viewed as threats to liberals even at the county level have also been targeted in illegal witch hunts, threatened, or worse in order to get them silenced.
DOJ Report: Wisconsin’s Infamous John Doe Was More Sinister Than First Reported
December 7, 2017
Wisconsin Attorney General report on the year-long investigation into leaks of sealed John Doe court documents to a liberal British publication in September 2016 finds a rogue agency of partisan bureaucrats bent on a mission “to bring down the (Gov. Scott) Walker campaign and the Governor himself.”
“investigation into dozens of right-of-center groups and scores of conservatives”
The AG report, released Wednesday, details an expanded John Doe probe into a “broad range of Wisconsin Republicans,” a “John Doe III,” according to Attorney General Brad Schimel, that widened the scope of the so-called John Doe II investigation into dozens of right-of-center groups and scores of conservatives. Republican lawmakers, conservative talk show hosts, a former employee from the MacIver Institute, average citizens, even churches, were secretly monitored by the dark John Doe.
Department of Justice investigators found hundreds of thousands of John Doe documents in the possession of the GAB long after they were ordered to be turned over to the Wisconsin Supreme Court.
The Government Accountability Board, the state’s former “nonpartisan” speech cop, proved to be more partisan than originally suspected, the state Department of Justice report found. For reasons that “perhaps may never be fully explained,” GAB held onto thousands of private emails from Wisconsin conservatives in several folders on their servers marked “Opposition Research.” The report’s findings validate what conservatives have long contended was nothing more than a witch-hunt into limited government groups and the governor who was turning conservative ideas into public policy.
thousands of private emails from conservatives in several folders marked “Opposition Research.”
“Moreover, DOJ is deeply concerned by what appears to have been the weaponization of GAB by partisans in furtherance of political goals, which permitted the vast collection of highly personal information from dozens of Wisconsin Republicans without even taking modest steps to secure this information,” the report states.
And in an all-too familiar occurrence involving allegations of government abuse, a key hard drive believed to contain the court-sealed John Doe documents leaked to The Guardian in October 2016 has suspiciously disappeared – GAB officials with knowledge of the hard drive can’t seem to explain what happened to it.
Still, despite a damning report laying out myriad examples of criminal misconduct by government bureaucrats, Schimel, a Republican, says his Department of Justice cannot file criminal charges – chiefly because of disappearing evidence, less-than-cooperative John Doe agents and the “systemic and pervasive mishandling of John Doe evidence (that) likely resulted in circumstances allowing the Guardian leak in the first place.”
The John Doe has a long and winding history. It all began in 2010, when the Milwaukee County District Attorney’s office, led by Democrat John Chisholm, signed off on a secret investigation into the Milwaukee County Executive’s office, at the time directed by then-Republican candidate for governor, Scott Walker.
It was Walker who, the year before, brought questions about a discrepancy in a county veterans fund to the DA’s attention. His chief of staff at the time asked the agency to investigate. Eventually, the district attorney’s office opened a John Doe, as Walker, a fiscal conservative in a liberal county, was rolling into his run for governor.
That investigation brought six convictions, only two of which were related to the original scope of the veterans fund investigation. Prosecutors, with the help of a very accommodating John Doe judge, went after Walker’s staff and conservative allies in what was commonly known in the DA’s office as the “Walker Doe,” according to an inside source. They threatened two County Executive staffers with lengthy prison sentences if they didn’t talk, if they didn’t turn on their boss. They didn’t because they couldn’t. There was nothing to tell, according to the targeted staffers.
They threatened two County Executive staffers with lengthy prison sentences if they didn’t talk, if they didn’t turn on their boss.
Chisholm used the hundreds of thousands of electronic communications – including reams of private email – to seek a second John Doe. This time, the district attorney, with the help of the very willing Government Accountability Board, set their sights on just about every right-of-center group in Wisconsin. The probe investigated the prosecutors’ theory that conservative organizations illegally coordinated with Walker’s campaign during the bitterly partisan recall elections of 2011 and 2012.
coordinated, predawn, armed raids on the homes
of several conservative Wisconsinites
John Doe agents effectively conducted a spy operation, secretly grabbing up millions of digital records from Republicans who had no idea they were being targeted in the Democrat-led dragnet. The agents capped it off in October 2013 with coordinated, predawn, armed raids on the homes of several conservative Wisconsinites. Many were forced to sit by while law enforcement officials rooted through their possessions in the name of a campaign finance paper investigation.
Only one problem: There was no illegal coordination, no campaign finance wrongdoing, no collusion. Sound familiar? (See Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller’s investigation into the Trump campaign). The John Doe judge at the time in early 2014 quashed the subpoenas used in the investigation. He found that the prosecutors lacked probable cause that crimes alleged had been committed.
The ruling followed a string of court decisions that not only raised questions about the prosecutors’ theory, but the tactics involved in the political probe.
In July 2016, the Wisconsin Supreme Court declared the John Doe investigation unconstitutional and ordered it shut down. The majority opinion concluded that Special Prosecutor Francis Schmitz was “the instigator of a ‘perfect storm’ of wrongs” perpetrated against citizens who were legally exercising their First Amendment rights. At least they were until the John Doe investigators silenced them.
Wisconsin’s John Doe law is similar to a grand jury investigation, without the benefit of a jury of peers. The procedures are overseen by a single judge with extraordinary power to compel witnesses to testify – all in the pursuit of determining whether a crime has been committed. Unlike a grand jury investigation where the accused can publicly defend themselves, John Doe targets and witnesses must remain silent. Failing to do so could land them in jail or subject them to steep fines.
After the Supreme Court decision, the Republican-led Legislature reformed the John Doe law and its secrecy order that one federal appeals court judge described as “screamingly unconstitutional.” It also jettisoned the “nonpartisan” Government Accountability Board following growing evidence of investigative abuses.
The Department of Justice report refers to “Falk boxes,” in which three hard drives in particular contained nearly 500,000 unique emails from Yahoo and Gmail accounts, totaling millions of pages.
“The hard drives included transcripts of Google Chat logs between several individuals, most of which were purely personal (and sometimes very private) conversations,” the report states.
GAB placed a “large portion” of the emails into several folders titled, “Opposition Research” or “Senate Opposition Research.”
John Doe investigators dug deep in their expansive “John Doe III” probe, obtaining through warrants electronic communications of the governor, Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester) U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Oshkosh), former RNC chair Reince Priebus, U.S. Rep. Sean Duffy, and state Sens. Van Wanggard and Howard Marklein. They also monitored the emails of conservative talk show hosts Vicki McKenna, Mark Belling, and Charlie Sykes, as well as former MacIver Institute employee Brian Fraley.
“The breadth of information and communications contained in the ‘Falk boxes,’ apparently as the result of the John Doe III investigation into Wisconsin Republicans, was breathtaking,” the attorney general’s report asserts. “Just to illustrate this point, the investigators obtained, categorized, and maintained over 150 personal emails between Senator Leah Vukmir and her daughter, including emails containing private medical information and other highly personal information.”
The Department of Justice’s review of these emails did not find any unethical or illegal behavior by “any state official, employee, or other Wisconsin Republican apparently targeted in John Doe III.”
DOJ investigators believe the leak to the Guardian was calculated to attempt to influence a U.S. Supreme Court decision on whether to take up John Doe prosecutors request for review of the state court’s decision shutting down the investigation – and whether they could hold onto the possessions they illegally took. The Guardian hit piece, with hundreds of pages of cherry-picked court documents, was published just days before the court unanimously rejected the case.
Sloppy disregard for the security of the court-sealed John Doe documents – at the GAB and at the state Supreme Court office – left the DOJ unable to identify beyond a reasonable doubt who had access to the records, when the records were accessed or “who stole them,” according to the report.
Here’s the scary footnote to a frightening report on government abuse: The Department of Justice cannot assure any John Doe II or III target that information illegally seized from them “will not be published on the Internet or by The Guardian at some future date.”
Report of the AG concerning violations of John Doe Secrecy Orders
Read the complete article HERE.
…Obama and his administration have a LOT to answer for. He bragged about no “scandals” but that was because it was all ONE BIG SCANDAL.
We are seeing the cap on the iceberg with President Trump and now this Wisconsin proof…just how many times over the last eight years were other citizens in other states also subjected to that administration’s will while citizens were made to tow the line or suffer?
If they are not brought to justice over this crap very soon, there is going to be a seriously pissed off country full of conservatives. Especially, if other such reports across the country surface.
Makes me wonder just what actions in California and other states were considering how they all seemed to have been patterned on Obama’s federal tactics and protected by his enforcers like DHS, BLM, EPA, and DoJ.
This is nothing less than unbelievable that we would see this level of criminality and yet have no one answer for their parts. Where the H&ll are citizens rights to protection and security?
Day after day we are finding out more and it makes my blood run cold with the cry for justice.