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Charlie Sykes: Sykes Writes

3 Things To Know From the Latest Scott Walker Document Dump

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Posted at Right Wisconsin.

By now we've all seen some form of this headline.
"Prosecutors allege Gov. Walker at the center of a "criminal scheme.""
That headline was enough to light up Twitter and send largely uninformed national reporters and left-wing activists into rank speculation about criminal charges and the end of Walker's political career.
The story stems from the release of a massive document dump ordered Thursday from a secret John Doe investigation into allegations of illegal coordination during the 2011-12 recalls. Federal appeals court Judge Frank Easterbrook ordered the records unsealed.
Here is what you need to know about these new John Doe documents.
They are not new. In fact, they are months old and part of the prosecutors desperate effort to fend off the targets' (successful) motion to quash the subpoenas. The document utterly failed to achieve its objective.  
A seven-month old failed argument is treated not only as news, but as a live charge. 
In fact the prosecution’s motion was rejected by the court and as a result the subpoenas were thrown out. The presiding judge in the case rejected the argument that any laws had been violated and affirmed the First Amendment protections of the so-caldle "coordination." 
"It is unlikely that the constitutional language relied upon by the State could withstand constitutional scrutiny today," wrote Judge Gregory Peterson. More recently, his ruling was bolstered by decisions by a federal judge and by the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, which ruled that many of the statutes cited by the prosecutors were unconstitutional  
So essentially, the main headline story being played up by the media is based on a conspiracy theory soundly rejected as false by multiple separate courts.
To summarize:
1.) The "Criminal Scheme" Theory Has Been Rejected By Two Judges: The alleged "criminal scheme" alleged by prosecutors and making its way into headlines has been completely rejected by two different judges. Judge Gregory Peterson, the judge overseeing the John Doe investigation, writes in Exhibit D (p 147) "the subpoenas do not show probable cause that the moving parties committed any violations of the campaign finance laws." Federal Judge Rudpolph Randa agreed and shut down the probe where it is currently on appeal to the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals.
2.) The Subpoenas Were a Fishing Expedition: In Exhibit F, a subpoena for Eric O'Keefe of the Wisconsin Club for Growth reveals the expansive scope of the subpoenas in the secret investigation. Investigators ask O'Keefe for all communications, records, invoices, and drafts of advertisements dating back to 2009 that relate to specific individuals, organizations, and various recall elections. The Wall Street Journal editorial board described these as "kitchen sink" subpoenas. This document reveals exactly how expansive the investigation is. A broad, political, super-secret investigation where the targets can't speak out ought to give everyone (especially those in the press) chills.
3.) There Have Been No Charges Filed in this John Doe Investigation: Prosecutors have their theory of a "criminal scheme." They've held their pre-dawn raids and issued their subpoenas. They've gathered their evidence. And yet, they have been unwilling to issue any charges. Given that two judges have rejected their theories, it is hard to imagine any charges will be forthcoming any time soon. So what is an investigation that results in no charges? It looks an awful lot like a fishing expedition that is chilling free speech.
Ultimately, a theory from the prosecution does not equal a crime. And the reality is, this John Doe investigation is on life support after Judges Peterson and Randa rejected these theories of a broad "criminal scheme." In fact, while the media/left spin this latest document dump as a liability for Walker, it is the prosecutors who are in danger of not only losing their case, but facing serious civil rights lawsuits.



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