Waukesha County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus Worked Under Prosser in a Wisconsin Assembly Dissolved by Scandal [April 10 article]


FYI-Wisconsin has 6,291 wards. You can take a look for yourself:  http://legis.wisconsin.gov/ltsb/redistricting/ward_data.htm

This Clerk Always Lands on Her Feet

What a fool I’ve been–not hanging around with a successful land-on-your-feet type like Kathy Nickolaus. She works as Waukesha County’s clerk since 2002 and she happens to have located 7,500 some votes for whom? Well, I’ll be damned: her former boss David Prosser.

She worked as a staffer under Wisconsin’s Assembly Republican caucus when Supreme Court Justice David Prosser ran it as Speaker & Minority Leader.

She then accepted immunity in prosecution in a criminal investigation of Wisconsin’s state government.

From a June 3, 2002 article in the MJS-

“I can’t really say anything about the probe,” she said. “I was offered immunity and I took it.”

The 42-year-old Republican candidate hopes that voters will accept her role in the ongoing scandal over alleged illegal campaigning by caucus staff members and elect her county clerk this fall. She is one of two declared candidates for clerk.

But some are squeamish about turning over a $56,000-a-year position — one that oversees elections — to someone whose last job resulted in a deal with prosecutors not to bring criminal charges against her.

“That sends up a flag,” said Muskego City Clerk Jean Marenda.

As I feared, Daily Kos checked – yup- Prosser Gained by Just Enough Votes to …

The win by Prosser would be – assuming all votes are certifed with him retaining this 7,500+ vote lead – at the 0.5% of the vote or higher. Which means a cost of $5.00/ward to do a statewide recount as it is no longer within the range to have costs covered by state and local governments.

From Cieran of Daily Kos “.. with approximately 740k for Kloppenburg and 739k for Prosser, the vote gets recounted at state-expense if the election is within ~7400 votes.”  (This stuff comes from page 3 HERE at the G.A.B.’s recount manual)

A Partial Recount May Be Conducted

Just a reminder a partial recount of the state can be conducted, per G.A.B. Director Kevin Kennedy’s statement in his press conference Wednesday, and thus Joanne Kloppenburg could focus on suspected “trouble spots”– errr – maybe Waukesha County?

Back to Ms. Nickolaus, the Entire Caucus she worked in was Eliminated

Nickolaus worked in the Legislative Services Technology Bureau and the state Assembly Republican Caucus and state Assembly Chief Clerk’s office.

From a 2002 article found somewhere (Wha? I screenprinted it. I’ll find the link in a minute. Or is this nternet scrubbing?)   “The state Assembly Republican Caucus, in which Nickolaus once worked, has since been eliminated by the state Legislature for alleged violations of several state election rules.

Many of the caucus workers have been interviewed in a John Doe probe being conducted by Dane County District Attorney Brian Blanchard and Milwaukee County District Attorney E. Michael McCann.”

And here’s full text of an interesting article:

Copyright 2002 Journal Sentinel Inc. (Note: This notice does not apply to those news items already copyrighted and received through wire services or other media)

Immunity deal shades Waukesha candidacy

Ex-caucus worker promotes openness but can’t offer details

By SCOTT WILLIAMS

of the Journal Sentinel staff

Monday, June 3, 2002

Waukesha — As a candidate for Waukesha County clerk, Kathy Nickolaus talks about the importance of politicians being open with voters.

Nonetheless, as a former state legislative caucus worker, she says she cannot come clean on one topic: Why she has been granted immunity from prosecution in a criminal investigation of state government.

“I can’t really say anything about the probe,” she said. “I was offered immunity and I took it.”

The 42-year-old Republican candidate hopes that voters will accept her role in the ongoing scandal over alleged illegal campaigning by caucus staff members and elect her county clerk this fall. She is one of two declared candidates for clerk.

But some are squeamish about turning over a $56,000-a-year position — one that oversees elections — to someone whose last job resulted in a deal with prosecutors not to bring criminal charges against her.

“That sends up a flag,” said Muskego City Clerk Jean Marenda.

Nickolaus, who lives near Oconomowoc, worked 13 years in Madison as a staffer for the Assembly Republican caucus, one of four GOP and Democratic legislative groups now under scrutiny.

An ongoing criminal investigation — one of the hottest topics in state politics in recent months — centers on whether those caucus employees engaged in illegal political activity during their state employment.

Nickolaus earned $54,000 a year as a data analyst and computer specialist for Assembly Republicans.

Immunity received

As district attorneys in Milwaukee and Madison turned their focus to legislative leaders managing the caucuses, Nickolaus last October became one of several employees granted immunity from prosecution for their cooperation in the investigation.

Since resigning from her state job May 10 and launching a campaign for county clerk, Nickolaus has refused to say whether she engaged in any illegal activity in Madison or whether she would have aided the current investigation without a promise of immunity.

“I expected this to come out, and I expected to get questions,” she said. “I believe in open and accountable government.”

But she added: “There’s not much I can say about it. I am under orders.”

Nickolaus has not been accused of any wrongdoing, and her campaign is drawing support from some high-profile Republicans in Waukesha County.

Patricia Karcher, a former county treasurer, has signed on as Nickolaus’ campaign treasurer. Karcher was unaware of Nickolaus’ role in the state caucus scandal, but she said that would not sway her loyalty.

“She’s my candidate for county clerk,” Karcher said. “As far as her past, that’s something you’re going to have to ask her about.”

County GOP Chairman Don Taylor, who makes no endorsements until after the party primaries, said Nickolaus’ immunity deal should not taint her candidacy. “I don’t think it’s relevant.”

Nickolaus is the second declared candidate for county clerk, and will meet fellow Republican Kathy Milbrath-Karalewitz in an October primary.

Milbrath-Karalewitz, 41, the Menomonee Falls village clerk, said her decision to enter the race was solidified when she heard that a former state caucus worker with no clerk experience was interested in the county job. Milbrath-Karalewitz also said the immunity deal with prosecutors raises disturbing questions about her opponent.

“I don’t think voters want that today,” she said. “They want someone who’s honest and up-front.”

Milbrath-Karalewitz, a former deputy county clerk, has won the support of incumbent Patricia Madden, who is retiring after 14 years in office.

“People expect officials to be above-board and have high integrity,” Madden said.

The general election is Nov. 5, although no Democratic candidate has registered yet. Nomination papers are due July 9.

Nickolaus said that although she has never worked as a municipal or county clerk, her state job gave her valuable experience studying legislative districts and learning about individual municipalities.

Credit: Journal Sentinel staff

AND if you’re up for more, a Daily Cardinal article which encapsulates more of the shenanigans of Wisconsin in 2002

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11 thoughts on “Waukesha County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus Worked Under Prosser in a Wisconsin Assembly Dissolved by Scandal [April 10 article]

  1. Most of what I see here is astounding. Thank goodness for tinfoil hats, so at least the aliens can’t hear our thoughts.

    • Han Solo – Believe it or not your brief criticism is about the most humorous and original left here by “the other side”. Too often I get some combo of swear words.

      The G.A.B. will out whatever’s gone on over in Waukesha. Meanwhile, the circumstances around this woman are so stinky…it sounds like the stuff of a novel, not a blog. But I didn’t make any of this circumstantial stuff up. At the least, the GOP should be angered that their Republican stronghold county can cavalierly leave aside their votes. I’d be rather upset if I learned that Dane Co. handled elections the way Nickolaus does.

  2. I wrote something along these same lines yesterday or the day before but I want to repeat it because this is exactly what I warned everyone about right after the election. I KNEW they would pull some kind of crap here. I just knew it. I lived in Florida during 2000 and had my right to vote taken from me by the Republicans that helped steal that election for Bush. It was a travesty and if they did it once, they will do it again… and they did. I had heard during election night that they had run out of ballots and were bringing in electronic voting machines and I knew there would be a big problem. The companies that make those machines can make them vote for anyone that they want or they can make them “flip votes” so that when you vote for your candidate it shows up on the machine that you really voted for the other guy. And they can do with without anyone knowing about it, even if you have the source code. Even if the machines are sealed. Here is one article about some young guys putting a pacman on the voting machine.
    http://www.dailyprincetonian.com/2010/10/15/26598/ They said that making the machines vote wrong would be much easier. Here is another article about what went on in Florida where all the tabulating machines were programmed to add them wrong and were falsified giving George Bush the election even though exit polls showed Kerry winning Florida.
    http://www.commondreams.org/views04/1118-22.htm The Republicans will do anything to get what they want. They proved it in florida and then again in Ohio. I don’t trust them as far as I can throw them.

  3. Clearly this is fraud!

    The right wingers know that in actuality ZERO voters showed up to vote in Brookfield on Tuesday. NONE.

    The web says that the population of Brookfield is only 39,000 people, so how is it possible that 14,000 people voted? How?

    …but Wikipedia lies!

    The city of Brookfield is not even a real city. It is a parking lot owned by Halliburton and…DAVID PROSSER. Check it.

    They even put up a fake city web site to make the world think it is a real city with real residents and real voters.

    The even hacked into Google Maps to put it on the map with a city hall and everything!

    Ask yourself. Which is more probable?

    That this is fraud and that ZERO people voted in Brookfield on Tuesday?

    or…

    That an underpaid, non-partisan County Clerk made a spreadsheet error in an unofficial, uncertified vote count to the Associated Press?

    We know the truth!

    LET’S DESTROY THIS POOR WOMAN! MAKE HER CRY!

  4. Just a heads up, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, there are 1850 municipalities in WI. At $5 that’s a little of $9,000… not terribly cost prohibitive

    • A “ward” is not a municipality. Here’s some light reading for you:

      http://legis.wisconsin.gov/lrb/pubs/ib/01ib3.pdf

      “Wards are constructed by aggregating whole census blocks so that the population of
      the ward falls within a predetermined range”
      frm, I think, pg. 4
      Population of Municipality Ward Population Range
      Cities over 150,000 . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1,000 to 4,000
      Cities 39,000 to 149,999 . . . . . . . . . 800 to 3,200
      Cities, villages, or towns
      10,000 to 38,999 . . . . . . . . . . . . . 600 to 2,100
      1,000 to 9,999 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 300 to 1,000
      Cities, villages, or towns to 999 . . no division required

  5. I tried to link to your article on the Waukesha clerk and Facebook told me the message had been blocked for being “abusive or spammy.” I was able to get the article referred to by posting just the URL. I have reported the matter as a wrongful blocking.

    • Thanks for the head’s up Barbara. That’s an all-time first and I don’t know.. it’s not about swear words. As far as spammy… I think I only linked it in 2 areas, which never caused a “red flag” before. So, I guess some pro-Walker or pro-Waukeshite reported it. Times are indeed weird.

  6. http://legis.wisconsin.gov/ltsb/redistricting/ward_data.htm

    Following each decennial U.S. Census, Wisconsin municipalities are required to redraw their ward lines to account for changes in population over the previous decade. Wards (called “precincts” or “voting tabulation districts” in other states) are the administrative subunits that are aggregated into election districts of equal population. Wards are used as the building blocks for state assembly, senate and congressional districts.

    http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/files/elections/2011/by_county/WI_Supreme_Court_0405.html?SITE=AP&SECTION=POLITICS

    3630 Precincts

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