A truly clean Elections Board
State Rep. Dave Travis has proposed a no-contact rule for members of the State Elections Board while they are considering a case.
That, I guess, because someone actually lobbied board members on an issue they were considering -- Congressman Mark Green's illegal transfer of $467,000 in federal special interest money to his governor's race.
Opines Travis, who's been around the Capitol since I was a reporter a few eons ago, and therefore should know better:
"Judges and members of the Public Service Commission may not discuss specific cases coming before them with anyone—not friends, family or anybody. The Elections Board, or any body created to replace it, should be placed under the same restriction."Ah, yes, the judicial standard -- the one that hasn't prevented so many political entanglements that there isn't a single State Supreme Court justice who can hear the Green case without some sort of conflict, real or perceived.
"People who appoint members, or their surrogates, shouldn’t be giving members instructions on how to vote on pending cases," Travis said.
Maybe the board should be made up of nuns or monks. Judges clearly are not clean enough.
WisPolitics reported today that Board Chairman John Savage, a Republican appointee, has given Green's campaign for governor $1,250 this year. Do you think he needed to be lobbied on how to vote on Green's money? He voted Green's way, no doubt on the merits.
Board members are appointed by politicians and political parties. They are not judges; they are partisans. No contact? No lobbying? No contributions to candidates?
This silliness is all headed in the direction of the rules the goo-goos seem to think should be applied to state contracts -- No one can get a contract if you ever met or talked with them, if they have ever contributed to your campaign, or might possibly contribute to it in the future.
Only perfect strangers could get state contracts. And only people that the political leaders choosing them had never heard of could be chosen to serve on the Elections Board.
Who's going to introduce the bill?