September 26, 2011

Accusations of vote buying in the Wisconsin recall elections.

Daniel Bice writes:
[I]t is clear the Milwaukee County district attorney's office is investigating charges that Wisconsin Right to Life offered rewards for volunteers....

During the recall races, [Wisconsin Right to Life] had sent an email that... offered "rewards for volunteers who make an impact over the weekend by educating and encouraging family and friends to vote by absentee ballot."

Those who signed up 15 "pro-life/pro-family voters" by July 5 would get a $25 gift or gas card as a reward. The person signing up the most people in each Senate district would win a $75 gift or gas card....

[Assistant District Attorney Bruce Landgraf] acknowledged in August that he was looking into a complaint by the state Republican Party and Media Trackers, a conservative advocacy group, over what has been dubbed the BBQ-for-votes scandal.

Wisconsin Jobs Now, a coalition of community and labor groups led by the Service Employees International Union, held at least five parties on Milwaukee's northwest side in which it offered voters free food (including chicken and ribs from Speed Queen), drawings for prizes and free shuttles to Milwaukee City Hall so they could cast absentee ballots in the Darling-Pasch contest.
Both groups defend their activities as legal.

33 comments:

Carol_Herman said...

Did you think the people in front of Walmart's, when they ask you to sign their petitions ...aren't being paid? They get half a dollar for every signature. So, when you see such a sheet, run your eyeballs over the "cash value."

And, while we're "investigating this" ... Why not "investigate" all those robo-calls?

Plus the wonderful one that went viral ... when Clark heard the woman answer his question "Do you know there's an election?" ... Had her phone answering machine recorder going ... So she said "SUCH A SHAME" ... before slamming down her receiver ...

Which did not disconnect her phone. So you heard Clark saying he wanted to call her back just to beat her up!

This is just a crazy tempest in a teapot. "Signatures" need to be validated ...

Or, I'd be earning the $15 "per" ... by signing up my dogs. And, Mickey Mouse.

traditionalguy said...

Well then, Blago must be innocent too.

EDH said...

In the Right to Life case, it appears rewards were offered to GOTV organizers, whereas Wisconsin Jobs Now offered the inducement directly to voters.

Some free market economists believe societal efficiency would be enhanced if people were allowed to sell their vote.

Carol_Herman said...

Choke-hold!

I can hear all the gagging, now.

SGT Ted said...

Yea, that stuff needs to stop. That and "walking around" money.

MadisonMan said...

Does Speed Queen have good ribs? (I'm not in Milwaukee). I'm wondering why the supplier of food is called out in the article.

Carol_Herman said...

Our votes are ALL by secret ballot.

You can say what you want about who you voted for ... but it's on par with asking a woman her age. (The number you hear might not be accurate.)

Or like Jack Benny used to say ... "I'm 39." Well, me too.

And, I voted for Rickey Branch.

Pastafarian said...

"...it offered voters free food (including chicken and ribs from Speed Queen)..."

Wow, SEIU. Stereotype much? Did they offer watermelon and malt liquor too?

Fred4Pres said...

Boy you can buy votes cheap in Wisconsin if the bundler gets a $25 card to Applebees!

Carol_Herman said...

Hey! Who paid for all those "free" pizzas that got delivered to the rotunda ... when mobs took it over?

You know this trick of "bypassing front doorways" ... Where to break the entry barriers set up by security at the Doubletree Hotel ... the rioters chose to walk in through the kitchen.

How come no investigation followed that trick?

At the pizzeria ... did they put up a tin cup for "free pizza" donations to elected state officials?

Whatever method it was, I'd call it BRIBERY!

There are laws on the books, already, to go after graft and bribes. But the pizza man got away with his schtick?

Would you need all the empty boxes ... plus a fingerprints expert, too ... so you could bring your evidence into court to show the judge?

EDH said...

...offered voters free food (including chicken and ribs from Speed Queen).

A clear case of money laundering.

David said...

Meanwhile, in Washington . . . . . .

Fred4Pres said...

Of course, if it were a $25 gift certificate to Culver’s I would understand.

Chuck66 said...

Fred, hell I'd consider voting for Lena Taylor if the Culvers gift card is large enough.

edutcher said...

As long as the antiabortion guys didn't do anything illegal, how much they got for every 15 names is irrelevant.

OTOH, SEIU should be investigated just on general principles.

PS Maybe there ought to be a limit on how many comments Carol can have in a thr...

No, Ann would never go for it.

Scott M said...

Of course, if it were a $25 gift certificate to Culver’s I would understand.

That will get you one large soda at the Culver's near here.

E.M. Davis said...

All votes are bought.

But not all of them are paid for.

traditionalguy said...

The local elections laws forbid giving out liquor on election day for the votes.

The voters here must vote without benefit of pain medication.

Joe said...

Carol Herman said: "Whatever method it was, I'd call it BRIBERY!"

I understand calling the freebies to voters bribery, though if I were the prosecutor, I wold not go after people offering a little barbeque, unless they used Kansas City barbeque sauce, which is an abomination in the eyes of God.

But surely you can pay people to help get out the vote. And if you can pay them outright, why can't you offer some benefit like a gift card to volunteers who perform well? Maybe I am naive, but I fail to see harm in either party doing that.

We know they've got people trying to get out the vote. Is requiring entirely uncompensated volunteers merely a way to try to reduce effectiveness?

traditionalguy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
timmaguire42 said...

It doesn't make much sense to oppose specific activities like this--there are too many ways to influence the absentee ballot process to control them all. The problem is the absentee ballot itself. People used to need a good reason to get one, now they just need to ask for it. That's the real problem here.

If you don't care enough to show up, then at least care enough to not vote.

TosaGuy said...

"Does Speed Queen have good ribs? (I'm not in Milwaukee). I'm wondering why the supplier of food is called out in the article."

SQ is delicious and it is a local institution. They also sell their sauce at area grocery stores.

TosaGuy said...

You can't spell BRIBERY without RIB!

AllenS said...

If you can pick voters up at a nursing home, and drive them there to vote, with help of course, this doesn't sound so bad.

WV: spitred

Might be gingivitis.

AJ Lynch said...

In Philly, on election day, bars could not open until the polls closed at 8PM. I don't think that law is still on the books.

Bruce Hayden said...

What leaves me a bit put off here is the blatant hypocrisy about all of it. The left has been doing this sort of thing heavily for decades now. Probably forever, or at least since states started cracking down on giving away walking around money.

Yes, I know. There is a critical distinction here. The potential perps were apparently trying to get people to vote Republican, instead of Democratic, where, apparently anything goes.

MadisonMan said...

@Tosa Guy, thanks. I'm not a big rib fan. I'm usually stopping at Kopps in Brookfield on the way home. But my son LOVES ribs, so maybe we'll stop there sometime.

E.M. Davis said...

I've heard Titus likes to get his ribs at Size Queen.

Maybe it wasn't ribs ...

Widely Seen said...

Nothing to see here. Just another set of 'get out the vote' efforts.

Democracy at its finest.

Get out of your bedroom slippers and start marching.

Please move along now. SEIU later!

sorepaw said...

Where oh where is the unit known as Garage?

Curious George said...

"sorepaw said...
Where oh where is the unit known as Garage?"

On the Spray N Wash forum seeing if it will get BBQ sauce stains out of his favorite "fist" t-shirt

showbiz111 said...

George Washington offered beers to potential voters. The shock and the shame of it all. The government was corrupt from its inception. /sarc

reformed trucker said...

"Does Speed Queen have good ribs?"

Some of the best in town. But since I'm cheap (frugal) I always get the pork shoulder dinner, extra meat( 8 bucks compared to 20). Yum!

When we were doing reconstruction on the Marquette Interchange, it killed me to smell that deliciousness every day.