Local Politics

Republican fake elector running to lead election commission

One of the 10 Republicans who attempted to cast Electoral College ballots for Donald Trump even though he lost Wisconsin is running to become chairman of the state elections commission where he currently serves as a member. Bob Spindell has been an outspoken member of the bipartisan commission and supporter of the investigation into the 2020 election being led by a former Wisconsin Supreme Court justice. Spindell said Monday he is the most qualified to help the image of the commission as chair. Under state law, the next chair must be a Republican. The commission scheduled a Wednesday vote.

Wisconsin Republicans vote not to endorse for governor

Wisconsin Republicans have voted not to endorse anyone for governor ahead of the GOP primary in August, after many activists rose up against the move. The Republican endorsement has been highly sought after because it unlocks funding from the state party. Former Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch got the most votes at 55%, just short of the 60% needed for an endorsement. Now the Republican candidates for governor will fight it out without any official backing from the party. The winner of the Aug. 9 primary will advance to face Democratic Gov. Tony Evers.

Kevin Nicholson campaigns for Wisconsin governor in La Crosse

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WKBT)- Kevin Nicholson is one of the Republican candidates looking to win Wisconsin’s gubernatorial primary. He made a stop at the Boot Hill Pub in La Crosse Thursday to meet with the Republican women of La Crosse County. Nicholson says at the state Republican convention this weekend, he’s going to encourage the state’s party to not make…

'This isn't Batman:' Judge gives Vos chance to avoid contempt with Gableman records

A judge saus the investigator hired by Wisconsin Assembly Speaker Robin Vos to look into the 2020 election appears to have “gone rogue” and “run amok” in refusing to comply with the state’s open records law. Dane County Circuit Judge Valerie Bailey-Rihn on Thursday gave the Republican Vos “one last chance” to seek records requested from investigator Michael Gableman before she fines Vos for contempt. Vos a year ago hired Gableman with $676,000 in taxpayer money to investigate the election won by President Joe Biden. Vos paused the investigation last month, pending the outcome of various lawsuits.

Wisconsin Republicans to vote on death penalty, elections

Wisconsin Republicans gathering for the state convention this weekend will vote on setting the party’s priorities for the next year, including resolutions calling for all ballots to be hand-counted on Election Day, imposing the death penalty for people who kill police officers, and opposing vaccine mandates. The resolutions were brought forward by Republicans across the state for approval at the convention and were made public this week. They are advisory only. But they show the priorities of the party that has a solid majority in the Legislature and would be able to enact whatever laws it wishes if Democratic Gov. Tony Evers is defeated in November.

Tommy Thompson questions hire for UW-Madison leader

Former four-term Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson is questioning the hiring of a law school dean from California to run the flagship University of Wisconsin-Madison campus, saying he hoped she does not bring a “California philosophy” with her.

Democratic Wisconsin Senate hopeful Barnes releases first ad

Wisconsin Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Mandela Barnes highlights his middle class upbringing in his first television ad in the hotly contested race. Two of his primary challengers, Alex Lasry and Sarah Godlewsk, have already spent millions on spots and polls show a tightening race. The first ad from Barnes, the lieutenant governor, landed Wednesday. The winner of the Aug. 9 primary in the battleground state will advance to face Republican Sen. Ron Johnson, who has also been on the air for months and groups backing Johnson have spent millions on ads so far. 

Lawsuit seeks $2.4M damages from Wisconsin fake GOP electors

The Republicans who attempted to cast Wisconsin's electoral ballots for Donald Trump in 2020 are being sued by plaintiffs who allege they engaged in a conspiracy after Joe Biden won the battleground state. Two Democratic electors and a voter are the plaintiffs in the lawsuit filed Tuesday in Dane County Circuit Court. They're seeking up to $2.4 million in punitive damages, saying it's necessary to deter such conduct in the future. The plaintiffs say it's the first such lawsuit in any of the seven swing states where Republican electors falsely declared Trump the winner and cast their votes for him in December 2020. Republicans have said they were just trying to preserve Trump's position should a court overturn Biden's win.

Wisconsin Democratic Senate candidate Lasry delays filing

Millionaire Wisconsin Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Alex Lasry will not have to report his financial assets until after the Aug. 9 primary, winning a delay to submitting the form that was due Monday. Lasry is on leave from his job as an executive with the Milwaukee Bucks. He has put nearly $6 million of his own money into the race so far. He is one of several Democratic candidates seeking to unseat Republican Sen. Ron Johnson. Lasry spokesman Thad Nation told the Wisconsin State Journal that the campaign was “waiting for additional required information in order to complete the financial disclosure form.”

Former legislator pleads guilty to employment tax charges

A former state lawmaker who also once served as Wisconsin’s tourism secretary has pleaded guilty to failing to pay nearly $200,000 in employment taxes. Sixty-year-old Kevin Shibilski, of Merrill, entered the plea in federal court Monday involving taxes owed on behalf of employees at two of his businesses, Pure Extractions and Wisconsin Logistics Solutions. Shibilski represented the 24th Senate District from 1995 to 2002, when he unsuccessfully ran in the Democratic primary for lieutenant governor. He later served as state tourism secretary under Gov. Jim Doyle. Shibilski faces a maximum sentence of five years in federal prison, three years of supervised release and a $250,000 fine.