Fess up! Sen. Mark Miller demands access to full legal info. as Co-Majority Leader of Wisconsin Senate

Democratic Party Senator Mark Miller of Monona, Wisconsin is now the Co-Majority Leader of the Senate along with his nemisis, Republican State Senator Scott Fitzgerald.

Sen. Miller now demands full access to whatever legal documents were created in secret between the Wisconsin GOP’s legal darling, Michael Best and Friedrich, and former State Senate Majority leader Fitzgerald. Particularly of interest: redistricting information.

He wrote a brief letter to Michael Best and GOP [link here] reminding the firm that when Sen. Pam Galloway resigned, the status of “majority leader in the state senate” evaporated. The senators then became split evenly – 16 GOP and 16 Dem. When the law firm signed a contract with Fitz, it did so with the “Majority Leader” of the Wisconsin state senate. Thus to Senator Miller’s thinking, the contract is open for reinterpretation.

Fitz rather predictably replied “no”. From M.J.Sentinel comes the following:

“I’m still dealing directly with them,” Fitzgerald said. “They said the contract is still between Senator Fitzgerald and the firm. . . . That relationship is still intact.”

Michael Best attorney Eric McLeod confirmed the firm would continue to take direction from Fitzgerald.

“Until there’s a change in the contract via some action taken by the Senate, we’re simply operating under the contract as it was previously written,” McLeod said.

Which leads us right back to Sen. Miller’s point: “as it was previously written” it is directed to a “Senate majority leader” which no longer exists.

Scott Fitzgerald, Republican Wisconsin State Senator

Use of “Secret” stamp image appears at this blog under the Creative Commons license assigned by Restricted Data of flickr

Rumor has it Lori Compas is announcing candidacy in the Scott Fitzgerald recall race

Inside sources inform me that on 2/28 a key leader in the move to recall Scott Fitzgerald will announce her candidacy for his seat in the state senate: Lori Compas.

On January 17th this year, Lori Compas and the Recall Fitz team handed in 123% of the signatures required to force a recall election against Fitzgerald. At that time Lori said “More than 20,600 of his own constituents—Republican, Democrat, and independent alike—signed a recall petition because Scott Fitzgerald stopped listening to them…Individually they were not heard; together, their call for open, honest government cannot be ignored.”

Lori Compas stood up to the arrogance and political negligence of Scott Fizgerald when she decided to file a recall against the man. Remarkably she did so without any support from a political party. The courage and drive she displayed alone have inspired Wisconsin and the nation. The fact that she has taken the high road in all of her references to Scott Fitzerald during interviews is another remarkable display of character and proves Lori Compas isn’t in this battle to simply sling mud.

The impossible has become possible: Scott Fitzgerald is in danger of losing the seat he has held since 1994 and the title “Senate Majority Leader”. That is assuming a recall election is called.

Scott Fitzgerald’s lawyers have submitted a challenge to 6,821 of the signatures submitted to recall him on the argument that the summer recall election should occur under new redistricting maps that don’t take effect until November. Oddly enough it was Scott Fitzgerald himself that added his affirmative vote on legislation that put those maps into effect beginning November of 2012.

The Recall Fitz team is disputing the Fitzgerald team’s legal logic. I believe the Recall Fitz team will prevail. Though I am neither a lawyer nor a scientist, I believe that implementing November maps in the summer requires violation of either the law or the space-time continuum.

In addition, according to the attorney for the Recall Fitz team, there are another 3,705 signatures challenged by Scott Fitzgerald – a number insufficient to do the job as that number falls 276 signatures short of the number Fitzgerald would need to invalidate the recall effort against him. –source

Assuming the election goes full speed ahead, Lori Compas will be competing to represent Senate District 13 which is between Milwaukee and Madison and includes the villages of Fort Atkinson, Lake Mills, Watertown, much of Oconomowoc, Deerfield and Beaver Dam.

For more background on the district and Scott Fitzgerald try this blue cheddar post,
Wisconsin State Senator Scott Fitzgerald expected to face a recall effort

To learn more about the Recall Fitz effort and lend your support, please visit RecallFitz.com.

Citizen-led Recall Effort Against Scott Fitzgerald Turns In 123% of Signatures Needed

Congratulations Lori Compas and the Recall Fitz team. You worked very hard for this. I know because I did some of that door to door work in Jefferson! Rest up and then call on us to get help. You will replace Scott Fitzgerald with a responsive, moderate leader that won’t remove our rights and slash our public’s access to its own services and education.  – blue cheddar

[Pics to come later.]

Madison, Wis.—Leaders of the campaign to recall Sen. Scott Fitzgerald have filed petitions containing 20,600 signatures to oust the Senate Majority Leader, one of the chief proponents of Scott Walker’s divisive budget policies.

The number of filed recall signatures represents 123% of the needed 16,742 signatures, a figure that Committee to Recall Scott Fitzgerald Chairperson Lori Compas called “overwhelming and decisive.”

Compas, a small business owner and mother of two from Fort Atkinson, said that most of the constituents who signed the petitions were not motivated by partisan politics. “More than 20,600 of his own constituents—Republican, Democrat, and independent alike—signed a recall petition because Scott Fitzgerald stopped listening to them,” stated Compas. “Individually they were not heard; together, their call for open, honest government cannot be ignored.”

According to Kristen Crowell, executive director of We Are Wisconsin, the campaign to recall the Senate Majority Leader has been a model of effective community organizing. “While political ‘experts’ in Madison were assuring the world that Sen. Fitzgerald was ‘untouchable,’ Lori Compas and the citizens of Senate District 13 knew the truth: any politician who stops listening to the voices of his constituents must be held accountable.”

Crowell added, “We Are Wisconsin is pleased to have worked with Lori and the hundreds of other volunteers throughout SD13 whose dedication made today’s filing a reality. They are a testament to the power of a truly grassroots movement.”

According to Compas, the next step for the district will be to identify a candidate to oppose Sen. Fitzgerald in a recall election. “Recalling Scott Fitzgerald is supported by people throughout the political spectrum, and I fully expect that the citizens of SD13 will have a robust and engaging conversation about who should replace him,” she said. “We look forward to the day when we have more honorable representation in our state senate.”

Who is Scott Fitzgerald accountable to? 86% of his contributions were from outside his own district

Oh Scott Fitzgerald, yea of ruddy face and angry little league coach demeanor. ‘Tis a shame that the individuals recalling you are so intelligent AND skilled.

It is particularly unfortunate for you that the woman who leads the charge to recall you is married to a GIS expert.

He finds it puzzling – as do I – that 86% of your contributions came from outside your state senate district and only 14% came from within it.

Check it out at the blog It’s academic.

Wisconsin State Senator Scott Fitzgerald expected to face a recall effort

Scott Fitzgerald, Republican Majority Leader, Wisconsin State Senate, pouting at the podium

On Friday a new site called RecallFitz was created to document and promote an impending recall effort against Scott Fitzgerald, leader of Wisconsin’s state senate GOP majority.

The site authors promise that “we’ll post the petition on this site at 12:01 November 15”. Based on social media, the recallers will aim to gather 18,000 signatures, but gather at minimum, 16,750.

(In case I have some outta-staters drifting in here, papers will be filed to recall Scott Walker on November 15th along with his Lieutenant Governor and 3 other Republican state senators–Sens. Pam Galloway of Wausau, Terry Moulton of Chippewa Falls and Van Wanggaard of Racine )

Scott Fitzgerald has served state senate district 13 since 1994. District 13 encompasses the villages of Fort Atkinson, Lake Mills, Watertown, much of Oconomowoc, Deerfield and Beaver Dam.

It doesn’t look like an easy task to boot Fitzgerald out considering his 2010 election numbers. Dem opponent Dwane Block of Oconomowoc got 29.2% of the vote, Independent Vittorio Spadaro got 3.14% of the vote, and Fitzgerald got 67.61% of the vote with 65,860 people voting in all.-source

I wish I could report that the Kloppenburg race this spring brought a switch to blue there as we saw in Wisconsin’s southwest and northwest but…. I can’t. In Dodge County Prosser got 13,379 to Kloppenburg’s 8,524. In Jefferson County Prosser got 13,261 votes to Kloppenburg’s 9,763 votes.

But election stats be damned, local recall volunteers are gung-ho to get out there to recall for Walker and this will be just 1 more piece of paper to bring along. They’ll be able to tell us what if any hope there is in getting Fitzgerald out of there from their time in the trenches. And in the meantime, they will build a stronger network for progressive types. Godspeed!

For just a quick refresher on why many hold a touch of contempt for Scott Fitzgerald – –
You may remember that Fitzgerald called the Dem14 – the 14 Democratic senators who left for Illinois to halt passage of Wisconsin Act 10 – “the most shameful 14 people in the state of Wisconsin” and he called their time in Illinois a “vacation from reality”

You may remember Scott Fitzgerald as the guy who ordered the LRB to do a runaround on our Secretary of State AND a court order, telling them to print the union-busting Wisconsin Act 10. Afterward he defied all legal logic and he proclaimed it legally published. – illusory tenant

Or perhaps you recall that he admitted on Fox that the whole gutting-the-unions thing was not for fiscal prudence, but for defeating Obama in Wisconsin saying:

FITZGERALD: Well if they flip the state senate, which is obviously their goal with eight recalls going on right now, they can take control of the labor unions. If we win this battle, and the money is not there under the auspices of the unions, certainly what you’re going to find is President Obama is going to have a much difficult, much more difficult time getting elected and winning the state of Wisconsin.

Backup link to video.

2008 Campaign contributors