Wisconsin ethics head makes case to keep job

Wisconsin ethics head makes case to keep job

Wisconsin Ethics Commission administrator Brian Bell said he believes he will be out of a job if the Senate votes against confirming him next week.

The Senate is expected to vote on rejecting Bell and Elections Commission administrator Michael Haas amid Republican concerns about their ability to lead their agencies. Both Bell and Haas are defending themselves and both bipartisan commissions have voted to support them.

“As a commissioned officer of the Army Reserve, I took an oath to uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States, not to any person, any position, any office, any party. I’ve served under presidents of both parties,” Bell said at a news conference Thursday.

Elections Commission Chairman Mark Thomsen has said he doesn’t think a Senate vote against confirmation would result in Haas losing his job. Thomsen has said that could lead to a lawsuit.

But Bell said at a news conference Thursday he thinks a vote to reject would mean he’s out of his job.

Bell delivered a letter to senators defending himself Wednesday but said he has not heard back from any Republicans who control his fate.

” I think I’ve done the best I can with how I’ve performed as the administrator and sharing the information of what has influenced my life and who I am, my past experiences and what I’ve done in my current role, so I think the rest is out of my control,” Bell said.

Sen. Scott Fitzgerald’s office confirmed to News 3 that the Senate plans to hold confirmation votes Tuesday for Haas and Bell.