March 2, 2012

Wisconsin man faces 50 years in prison and a $90,000 fine on charges of forging signatures on recall petitions.

See, this is what you call the deterrent effect.

Why not the death penalty? Surely, the threat of execution would keep these cheating connivers in line.

78 comments:

edutcher said...

Ann's starting to sound like The Blonde, but, yeah, these guys deserve a long stretch up the river.

Original Mike said...

"Why not the death penalty?"

We don't have the death penalty.

chickenlittle said...

How about "hate crime" sentence multipliers if the candidate is a protected minority or endangered political species?

Original Mike said...

I think the lesson here is; if you're going to commit election fraud, do it in a jurisdiction with a Democratic DA.

EDH said...

Now we know what to do with those 2Ls With Higher LSAT Scores Goofing Off More With Laptops in Class, With No Effect on Grades.

Brown, a blogger and co-creator of Citizens for Responsible Government of Racine, said he wasn’t looking for problems. He was just scrolling through documents on his laptop, watching television with one eye while using his other eye to see what local political figures had signed the recall petition.

Evidently too much work for the Government Accountability Board?

Matthew said...

"“It’s a shame, he’s a good person … I don’t think he would do anything intentionally to hurt anyone.”"

Except lie and undermine our democracy. But that doesn't really hurt anyone, does it?

Sorun said...

...watching television with one eye while using his other eye to see what local political figures had signed the recall petition.

I have a headache just thinking about trying to do that with my two eyes.

tim maguire said...

Forging election signatures is a crime against democracy.

Voter fraud should be punished with banishment (preferably in compliance with a treaty that extends the banishment to all democracies).

But this--cheating to force a duly elected official to face the voters before the natural end of his term--a long stretch in the hoosegow seems sufficient.

Aridog said...

Deterrence works only when the perpetrator thinks he/she might get caught. We live in a society of souls where miscreants are remorseful only if caught.

Boo Hoo.

Not.

John Smith said...

He will get off with the lightest of punishments, virtually Scott free. Just like the Liberal death threat babe.

EDH said...

Sorun said...
"...watching television with one eye while using his other eye to see what local political figures had signed the recall petition."

I have a headache just thinking about trying to do that with my two eyes.


Think about that bullfighter.

Sigivald said...

Why not the death penalty?

Because the Supreme Court would never stand for it.

A long prison term for undermining democracy, they might well stand for.

But more importantly, "faces 50 years and a $90,000 fine" is, as the headline writer so innocently hides, the maximum possible sum, not the likely, the minimum, or the definite outcome.

Mike said...

Wha? Election fraud NEVER happens! It's a right wing plot to deprive minorities the right to vote. It's a myth. Only Obama haters would think election fraud is real. Don't you know that 90% of political scientists say fraud doesn't affect the outcome of elections? Using a dead man's name is a victimless crime. No one at Althouse's blog SAW this guy forge a name. This is just a distraction from Walker so the news won't cover his impending (soon, really, I heard it on the way to the Great Dane to have a porter) indictment in illegally funding Koch brother$ contributions into the anti-recall campaign.

No justice no peace!

AJ Lynch said...

Demet is Garbage Mahal?

Original Mike said...

I'd be happy with 10 years.

Ann Althouse said...

If the penalty is harsh enough, there's deterrence even where there is a low risk of getting caught. It's so much easier to crank up the penalty and take down one unfortunate citizen, and voila, compliance.

AprilApple said...

I'd bet money this isn't the only fraud perpetrated by democrats.

Original Mike said...

"If the penalty is harsh enough, there's deterrence even where there is a low risk of getting caught."

I wonder how many other of our fellow citizens are having a hard time getting to sleep at night?

Maybe we should offer amnesty if they come forward now.

Nathan Alexander said...

I'd say a fair penalty would be loss of voting privileges.

Not that it would stop him from voting Democrat.

So to make the punishment fit tighter with the crime, a nice alternative penalty would be he could never take any tax deductions, not even personal or dependent exemptions. That would be a financial penalty that keeps on giving, and would probably ensure he would never vote "higher taxes" Democrat every again.

garage mahal said...

Death penalty for ID theft? Wow. I'd hate to be Walker's right hand man, Tim Russell, right about now, who embezzled/stole Veterans funds. Whoa.

Matthew said...

"Wow. I'd hate to be Walker's right hand man, Tim Russell, right about now, who embezzled/stole Veterans funds."

A few weeks ago, he was an aid who worked for Walker, now, he's his right-hand man.

Crazy how post-scandal promotion works.

Hagar said...

I have read that during the English Commonwealth, adultery was punishable by death, but for the entire ten years of its existence, the Puritans never could find a jury willing to convict.

Judges and law professors may hate it, but there is a reason for having juries.

SGT Ted said...

Wait, I thought that never happens with ACORN style ballot signature drives.

Was it racist to check the validity of the signatures?

Jay said...

Have a nice stay, garage!

traditionalguy said...

I have an idea. Waterboard him until he gives up Garage and his co-conspirators, then burn his copy of Rules for radicals, and finally e-mail the Isthmus that he turned them all in.

Original Mike said...

Having trouble sleeping, garage?

lewsar said...

and this is how the american justice system rolls in 21st century.

somebody does something illegal, albeit not very heinous. or perhaps somebody does nothing illegal at all, but the cops think otherwise.

the prosecutor loads up all possible charges (as in this particular case)and threatens the miscreant with eleventy jillion years in the hoosegow.

if the miscreant elects to take his/her chances at his/her constitutionally guaranteed jury trial, he/she runs the risk of a ludicrously lengthy prison term if convicted.

so what often happens is that the miscreant pleads guilty to a lesser charge, and takes his/her lumps. this may on occasion happen even if they haven't done anything wrong, because if convicted at a trial the consequences are hideous.

even if you only serve a quarter of your sentence, that still means 13.75 years in prison based upon this example.

in other news, here in colorado most offenders on probation are monitored not by the state but by private companies. if you don't pay the fees mandated by the state in addition to whatever extra, fee-bearing classes your probation officer thinks you should take, you can find yourself up in front of a judge for probation violations.

nice conflict of interest, don't you think?

garage mahal said...

What to do with people that publicly claim signatures are invalid, but in actuality are valid? Libel? Public lashings?

garage mahal said...

Having trouble sleeping, garage?

You think I have a conservative brother that is friends with Tea Partiers, and that I'm Mark Demet, 59 yrs old living in Racine? haha.

Thorley Winston said...

I'd say a fair penalty would be loss of voting privileges.
I was going to suggest also making him pay the full cost of verifying every signature he claims to have collected. And by “verify” a mean an affidavit signed by each individual petition signer and witnessed by a neutral third party that they also verified a photo ID of the signer.

Original Mike said...

"You think ... I'm Mark Demet?"

No. But you gotta be wondering if they're coming for you next.

Do they have internet privileges in the joint?

bagoh20 said...

I'm willing to publicly claim that some of the signatures are invalid.

AprilApple said...

These are the same people who faked doctor's notes. Many on the left have no problem lying and cheating for the cause.

Alex said...

garage just gulped HARD.

garage mahal said...

No. But you gotta be wondering if they're coming for you next

Nah, just signing a recall is still legal as far as I know in Clusteruckistan. What idiot that wants a recall to happen forge names to make the recall look bad?

Matthew said...

"What idiot that wants a recall to happen forge names to make the recall look bad?"

-- The kind who believes his work won't be checked, or will be checked by sympathetic/lazy confederates.

bagoh20 said...

It's such a low return on investment to commit this felony, that the only explanation is a total belief that he would be in no danger of prosecution. I think we all believed that before today. I hope this story gets wide coverage.

Methadras said...

Why not the death penalty? Surely, the threat of execution would keep these cheating connivers in line.

Because the death penalty in this country has been neutered to the point of being ineffective if not outrightly ignored. Death row inmates are the most catered to in the penal system. They cost the most to take care of because they stay on death row after numerous appeals, stays of executions, and any other numbers of legal maneuverings that occur whenever the death penalty is used.

Death penalty cases should allow for a 2 year maximum appeal process with 1 retrial if necessary. Beyond that, not a day after, zap zap, pow pow, hang em' by the neck until dead and send them down the river Styx to their eternal damnation.

If they got the wrong guy, too bad. Since the odds of that are generally fairly low.

Portia said...

So to make the punishment fit tighter with the crime, a nice alternative penalty would be he could never take any tax deductions, not even personal or dependent exemptions. That would be a financial penalty that keeps on giving, and would probably ensure he would never vote "higher taxes" Democrat every again.

Wouldn't work; he probably doesn't pay taxes anyway, just gets EIC.

DADvocate said...

Death penalty for ID theft?

Somehow Garbage conveniently overlooks the "two counts of election fraud." Guess that's because to him election fraud isn't a crime, unless performed by a non-Democrat.

John Stodder said...

Do they have internet privileges in the joint?

Not officially, except for e-mail. Lots of inmates buy smartphones from COs. But if you do happen to get caught, you can conceivably get time added on to your sentence.

I read a lot of books last year. Amazing how much time you waste on the Internet.

rhhardin said...

You have to sign twice to make once work.

The second affirms that you meant the first.

Rusty said...

No! Get out!

Really?

You mean proggs are less than honest?

I am, quite frankly, surprised.

Rusty said...

garage mahal said...
No. But you gotta be wondering if they're coming for you next

Nah, just signing a recall is still legal as far as I know in Clusteruckistan. What idiot that wants a recall to happen forge names to make the recall look bad?



....................................................Nah. Too damn easy.

John Stodder said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Peano said...

It's so much easier to crank up the penalty and take down one unfortunate citizen ....

Yeah. An "unfortunate" citizen.

garage mahal said...

You mean proggs are less than honest?

Demet's brother is a conservative who appears to run in Tea Party circles. What makes you think Demet is a prog? Nobody in the recall committees knew or heard of him.

misterdregs said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
misterdregs said...

"Things got a little out of hand. It's just this war and that lying son of a bitch Johnson..."

(Borrowed from James Taranto."

Geoff Matthews said...

Isn't there a bit in court decisions about disproportionate level of punishment?

bagoh20 said...

I've heard long and often that in old England pick pocketing was punishable by death, yet is was quite prevalent, even happening at executions.

Anyone know if that's actually true?

Rusty said...

garage mahal said...
You mean proggs are less than honest?

Demet's brother is a conservative who appears to run in Tea Party circles. What makes you think Demet is a prog? Nobody in the recall committees knew or heard of him.



Anecdotal evidence to the contrary, it's what you proggs do.

prairie wind said...

@Lewsar:
Instapundit linked to this article last night. You either read the article, too, or you should read it and enjoy the affirmation of your comment above.

TosaGuy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
TosaGuy said...

"Death penalty for ID theft? Wow. I'd hate to be Walker's right hand man, Tim Russell, right about now, who embezzled/stole Veterans funds. Whoa."

This veteran once again thanks you for your heartfelt concern about issues that impact veterans. Since I know your support of veterans in this case holds no partisan bias, I most certainly can rest assured that Mr. Garage Mahal is very much against Obama's plan to effectively kill the TriCare health insurance plan for those in our military.

Thank you for your support on this issue that is very important to members of our nations military.

Original Mike said...

"Yeah. An "unfortunate" citizen."

Good catch. I missed that.

Original Mike said...

"It's such a low return on investment to commit this felony, that the only explanation is a total belief that he would be in no danger of prosecution."

Or rabid hatred of the other side.

Say, can he plead insanity? I'd half believe it after watching the Wisconsin left over the past year.

garage mahal said...

Tosa Guy
Get me a good link, I haven't heard much about that yet.

john said...

I, for one, would miss the contributions of Garage Mahal during his lengthy prison time, and I would be pleased, nay, honored to join his plea for internet priveleges during his sentencing hearing.

Perhaps we can start a petition.

lewsar said...

@prairie wind: i have indeed read the boston.com article. the article struck a very strong chord with me, for reasons i will leave unsaid.

garage mahal said...

@john
Worries not. I would never jeopardize my ability to post here at my heart's content. N.E.V.E.R.

it's way too important to me. And others.

Jess said...

@Methadras:

If they got the wrong guy, too bad. Since the odds of that are generally fairly low.


Wow, that's harsh if you happen to beat the odds. But tell you what: I'll go along with it if, should DNA evidence exonerate the deceased, the prosecutor gets the death penalty himself, or herself. The odds of that are fairly low, are they not?

Triangle Man said...

@garage

The new budget would require an increase in Tricare premiums.

I don't know if Tosa was one of the supporters of Walker's budget who said that it was only fair that State workers pay for their health care and retirement like everyone else, but sounds like the same deal, except the military isn't going to be making mandatory contributions to their retirement.

chickenlittle said...

Perhaps we can start a petition.

Put me down twice!

Chip Ahoy said...

You have to sign at least five times. The second time to show you meant it. The third to show you are not a robot. The fourth to show that you're not a person pretending to be a robot who likes to play jokes, and a fifth time to demonstrate that you really do have a grip on reality and that you can count to and stop at five.

Did I ever tell you about my German Shepard that could count to four? Fact. He barked purposefully when I held up my fingers. Stopped when I closed my hand. If I held four fingers for a fifth count then the dog would tilt his head as dogs do so comically and make a quizzical uncertain half-bark as if questioning his own bark. A question bark.

prairie wind said...

Me too, Lewsar. And if you look at the burgeoning prison population, you know there are a huge number of people for whom that struck a chord because they know someone in prison or are/were in danger of ending up there.

Unless things change--soon--and the power of law enforcement agencies is reduced, the number of people who understand will only get larger and the number of people who like to joke about prison sentences will diminish.

Chip Ahoy said...

So he'd go,

ARF ARF ARF ARF ¿arf?

Jess said...

@Chip Ahoy:

Are you sure he wasn't a Spaniel?

prairie wind said...

a question bark

Dang, I wish I'd said that.

Original Mike said...

"And others."

Don't kid yourself.

Terry said...

Original Mike wrote-
I think the lesson here is; if you're going to commit election fraud, do it in a jurisdiction with a Democratic DA.

Too true. Crow Wing County in Minnesota would seem to be such a place: http://brainerddispatch.com/news/2011-03-08/voter-fraud-allegations-made-anew

30yearProf said...

Did the unionized police even bother to ask him if he had sought out petition signers in the Scott Walker recall effort? $10 says he did but they didn't ask.

Once a forger, always a forger (unless caught and ACTUALLY punished - which won't happen here).

Tyrone Slothrop said...

A German shepherd walked into Western Union and said, "I want to send a telegram. I want it to say 'Arf, arf, arf, arf, arf, arf, arf, arf, arf.' The operator said, "You know, if you want to, you can send ten words instead of nine. It's the same price." The German shepherd said, "You mean 'Arf, arf, arf, arf, arf, arf, arf, arf, arf, arf?'" "Yes," said the operator, to which the dog replied, "That doesn't make any sense at all!"

Rusty said...

bagoh20 said...
I've heard long and often that in old England pick pocketing was punishable by death, yet is was quite prevalent, even happening at executions.

Anyone know if that's actually true?

Yes it was. But it wasn't practiced very often. You'd be sentenced to hang ,but if you agreed to immigrate to one of the colonies the sentence was suspended.

TosaGuy said...

"Tosa Guy
Get me a good link, I haven't heard much about that yet."

www.google.com

Milwaukee said...

England once had embezzlement as a capital crime. The banks went broke. They couldn't find a jury willing to convict for theft. In the same way, in this country, feminist led the charge to reduce rape from a capital crime. Same reason, juries wouldn't convict a man to death for rape, when the victim was still alive.

I learned it was the certainty of being caught and punished which deterred crime, not the severity of the punishment.

"My object oh sublime, I shall achieve in time is to let the punishment fit the crime, the punishment fit the crime."

John Lynch said...

Seems excessive when you don't even have to show an ID to vote.

Rusty said...

shiloh said...
"maybe because I'd love to get that"

Indeed, as Althouse is all about $$$, shocking!

But hey, if it would make certain lemmings post less, not a bad idea :-P, plus you would totally eliminate liberal input = a conservative circle jerk ie Althouse Nirvana!




There's a tip jar up top there. Toss in a couple of scheckles and call it good.

Ann and her husband probably make pretty good coin just doing what they do, but as a sign of respect for her efforts here I gave her a couple of bucks.