By M.D. Kittle | Wisconsin Watchdog
MADISON, Wis. – Newly unsealed documents in a lawsuit against the state Government Accountability Board further reveal a rogue agency all in from the beginning of a political John Doe investigation into dozens of conservative groups and the campaign of Gov. Scott Walker – even as their hapless special prosecutor was “really questioning the validity of the case.”
Thursday evening, Waukesha County Court released 182 pages of emails, transcripts of closed-door meetings and other previously sealed documents after attorneys for the GAB and the plaintiffs came to terms on precisely what can be made public — for now. The judge in the case has said more records will be made public when the lawsuit goes to trial.
The records release comes just as the Legislature takes up a bill that would overhaul the troubled accountability board.
There’s a lot of black on the records, with lengthy sections, even complete pages, redacted.
But what remains is a startling picture of an agency that zealously pursued a problem-riddled campaign finance and illegal coordination investigation in the face of multiple warnings that they were on the wrong path. An agency, that despite its public comments, seemed very much in control of a secret probe that has been struck down as unconstitutional and described as a “‘perfect storm’ of wrongs.”
And emails from key GAB employees, like former staff counsel Shane Falk, raise more questions about the partisan nature of the “nonpartisan” agency.
“Bottom line, he is really questioning the validity of the case,” Falk wrote in an email, dated Nov. 6, 2013, to GAB Director Kevin Kennedy and other key staff members involved in the investigation. Falk was referring to Francis Schmitz, the former U.S. attorney the GAB tapped to serve as special investigator and John Doe special prosecutor at a rate of $130 an hour.
Falk sent the email a little more than a month after law enforcement officials served warrants (applied for by the GAB) in predawn, paramilitary-style raids.
The unsealed records show John Doe investigators obtained five physical search warrants, 17 subpoenas in the Madison area, and 12 subpoenas outside of Madison, including Milwaukee and Washington, D.C.
In the November 2013 email, Falk berates the special prosecutor as a man out of his depth.
“He said he is having a rough time with all the attorneys and is worried about arguing the case to the Judge,” Falk wrote. “Essentially, he was whining that I was beating him up too much and he is really trying to get up to speed on the law.”
Again, Schmitz, the special prosecutor is trying to “get up to speed on the law” a month after investigators raided the homes of Wisconsin citizens and seized millions of pages of their documents.
Schmitz, as special prosecutor, had to appear in court around that time to defend the raids and the John Doe probe at large.
“He said that he has been getting beat up by these attorneys and felt really beat up by Esenberg,” Falk wrote, apparently a reference to Rick Esenberg of the Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty, which was involved in the defense of some of the Doe targets.
“He also admitted to me that he, David and Bruce have been discussing things and in light of the motions, were very fearful that they had missed something. He said that he knew we had discussed this before and seemed certain, but they are really worried that we missed something,” Falk wrote, referring to David Robles and Bruce Landgraf, the Milwaukee County assistant district attorneys who were integrally involved in the John Doe probe.
In the same email, there is a statement that permeates the communications from the opening days of the investigation through the initial court challenges, a kind of arrogance that defies the investigator’s creed.
Falk asserts that the conservatives’ legal counsel, attorneys who specialize in First Amendment and campaign finance law, don’t have any idea what they are talking about when they argue that their clients have broken no laws.
“There is the reality of the law and what they think the law should be. They conflate the two and misrepresent the reality,” Falk wrote.
Conservative targets of the long-idle investigation believe the same about the prosecutors and GAB agents, and multiple courts have sided with those conservatives.
From the beginning
The newly released documents on the conduct of the GAB, which regulates Wisconsin’s campaign finance, elections, lobbying and ethics law, show the agency was in on “John Doe II,” as it has been billed, from the beginning.
An email dated Aug. 8, 2012, from Robles to GAB Ethics Division Administrator Jonathan Becker discuss a meeting on the John Doe. Milwaukee County District Attorney John Chisholm, a Democrat, was getting permission to roll his “John Doe I” into an expanded campaign finance investigation. The first Doe was, according to one whistleblower, a vendetta investigation of Walker when he was Milwaukee County executive. That probe ended with six convictions, but only two of them had anything to do with the original intent of Chisholm’s ever-expanding secret investigation.
In November 2012, Robles sent an email to his partners at GAB advising them to use segregated Gmail addresses for “stuff related to the Badger Doe.”
Falk seems to take the reins early on, getting the investigative wheels in motion.
“As you may know, things are really heating up here,” he wrote to Robles in an email dated Feb. 28, 2013. “Kevin (Kennedy) and Jon (Becker) would like a status on what is happening with Badger Doe and update you on a communication Kevin had with the IRS.”
Kennedy, as we have learned in recent months, is a longtime “personal friend” of former IRS tax-exempt director Lois Lerner, who led the IRS division accused of targeting conservative groups seeking 501(c)(4) nonprofit status.
The Wall Street Journal in July reported that John Doe investigators asked the IRS to look into a conservative group that was a primary target of the probe.
Asked about his relationship with Lerner earlier this month during a legislative hearing, Kennedy sounded indignant.
“Seriously? Have you no decency?” Kennedy sharply responded to Republican state Sen. Chris Kapenga’s question. “That’s a question right out of Joseph McCarthy,” Kennedy said, his voice rising and cracking with anger.
Setting the table
In a closed session in June 2013, the retired judges presiding over the GAB unanimously approved launching the agency’s investigation (after nearly a year of staff members working closely with Milwaukee County prosecutors). They expressed concerns that the agency needed to accomplish a great deal and quickly.
The notes from the meeting show an agency driving the manifold parts of an unprecedented, multi-county investigation.
Board members wondered whether reserve Judge Barbara Kluka, who was presiding over the Milwaukee County investigation, would authorize the GAB to conduct an investigation. GAB Judge Gerald Nichol, now chairman of the accountability board, said he was confident Kluka would, “based on conversations he had previously” with the judge in which she said she “would be open to any requests from the G.A.B. to get involved in the John Doe.”
Nichol, it appears, was gaming the system before the GAB officially jumped into the investigation.
Kluka, who removed herself from the case a few weeks after the home raids citing a conflict of interest, has been accused of being a “rubber stamp” for the prosecutors and the GAB.
Even though some board members expressed disbelief that the conservative groups, usually “so savvy,” would be engaged in such “blatant” campaign finance offenses, they still seemed unsure of precisely what those offenses were.
Judge Michael Brennan asked what Chisholm and his assistants were “relying on to bring this case.”
“He asked if it is just based on emails that have been obtained, emails believed to still be out there and oral testimony or is if there is something else that is going to be looked into,” the confidential meeting notes state. “Mr. Falk indicated it is a combination of all of that information.”
The GAB had no idea what any of it would cost taxpayers, estimating charges for documents storage, for instance, that has come nowhere near the actual expenses three years later.
At that time, the GAB was setting up the meetings that would bring five counties into the probe and put Schmitz at the helm. Before they did, they considered contracting with attorney Paul Schwartzenbart to serve as special prosecutor. Schwartzenbart, who would eventually become the GAB’s defense attorney in the state lawsuit, wanted $240 an hour to do the job.
Much has been made about Schmitz’s political background. The mainstream media in its defense of the Doe investigation has declared the special prosecutor a Republican because of his statements in a previously released court document.
The newly disclosed records note:
“Mr. Schmitz indicated that he had very little by way of political background, and his only real entrance into the political forum was when he was applying for the U.S. Attorney position that was ultimately given to Steve Biskupic. He indicated that he joined the Republican Party for this purpose and had minimal contacts with some party officials at that time, but nothing extensive.”
Not quite the conservative prosecutor the John Doe defenders have painted him to be.
The wheels on the investigation appear to have come off shortly after the raids.
In an email to Kennedy, Falk criticizes Robles for failing to add an attorney to an attorney/client privilege spreadsheet. It turned out the firm worked with the Wisconsin Club for Growth.
“UGH!” Falk wrote. “Fran is really worried now.”
Schmitz had reason to be worried. O’Keefe’s attorneys were indeed asking some very tough questions about the investigation.
On Oct. 10, 2013, Schmitz emailed Falk worried that O’Keefe’s legal counsel was calling the investigators’ tactics “heavy handed.”
Two weeks later, Falk warned his colleagues, “We have some vulnerability here.”
But on several occasions as the John Doe cabal was being challenged in court, Falk attempted to steel the courage of the special prosecutor.
“As I also said, if you think me crazy after reading this, I will shut up. But … me thinks you will start believing big time,” Falk wrote in an email on Nov. 6, 2013. By then, conservative targets were asking Kluka’s successor, Judge Gregory Peterson, to quash the subpoenas. He did, in January 2014, finding that the investigators had shown no probable cause that a crime had been committed.
‘Parallel investigation’ no more
Kennedy has insisted that, contrary to the claims of conservative targets, that the GAB did not lead the probe, that it conducted a “parallel investigation.”
GAB emails repeatedly suggest otherwise.
“Nate and I offered to go through (Landgraf’s) brief today and make some general comments, along with softer suggested language for the GAB references. We offered to do this rather than a straight edit because we were rewriting so much of the brief,” Falk wrote in a December 2013 email to Kennedy.
Kennedy was reluctant to disclose just how involved the GAB was.
“Please note that (Landgraf) relied heavily on GAB involvement. Nate and I are very concerned that he was too strong and will modify it; however, this response will be public and so we need to fish or cut bait as far as GAB’s involvement.”
“I think you must forewarn the Board members that GAB involvement will be public in a big way …”
The unsealed documents contain several partisan tweets sent by GAB staff counsel Nathan Judnic in February 2011. during the battle over Walker’s public employee collective bargaining reform bill known as Act 10.
“Stand in solidarity. Kill the bill. Support public employees and their right to bargain. Rally @ Capitol @ noon Tues. and Wed,” he wrote in one tweet.
“Time for some good old-fashioned rallying. Tuesday and Wednesday @ the Capitol. Stand up for Wisconsin public employees against Guv. Walker,” stated another message.
Kennedy has defended his staff, including Falk, who once chastised Schmitz for public statements that Falk believed would complicate the campaign of Democratic gubernatorial candidate Mary Burke. He insists they are simply “passionate” about their jobs.
- So what are the odds the Wisconsin Supreme Court will stay its John Doe ruling?
- Sources: Secret probe targeting conservatives is abuse of prosecutorial powers
- Scary! Phantom prosecutor in Dems’ war on conservatives disappears inside courthouse
- EXCLUSIVE: Judge in Democrat-led John Doe probe recuses herself
- Democrats’ ‘intelligence-gathering’ spreads in Wisconsin
- Democrats tap anti-terror expert to head secret probe of Wisconsin conservatives
- Sheriff Clarke: John Doe case shows Milwaukee DA is ‘weaponized for political purposes’
- Clarke: John Doe into conservatives ‘unbridled,’ ‘dangerous’ and ‘tainted’
- Sources: New judge named in Democrat-led secret probe
- Vendetta justice? Criticism growing about John Doe prosecutor Bruce Landgraf
- Will Wisconsin’s own ‘Miserable’ inspector jail conservative activist for speaking out about Dem probe?
- Conservative targets bring in big guns to Democrat-led John Doe fight
- ‘Dangerous’ game: Former FEC official blasts Democrats’ secret investigation of conservative groups
- Center for Media and Democracy: Liberals are morally superior
- Wisconsin Dems suddenly support political investigations
- WI Republican attorney general to represent judges in Democrat-led John Doe probe
- Republicans speak out about silent John Doe targeting conservatives
- Biggest secret in John Doe may be just how judges and special prosecutors are selected
- WSJ: John Doe judge deals body blow to secret probe targeting conservatives
- Vos: Wait until John Doe in ‘rearview mirror’ before revisiting law
- Lawsuits looming in Wisconsin’s crumbling John Doe probe?
- Conservative to Democrat prosecutors: Shut down secret political probe or face civil rights lawsuit
- John Doe target O’Keefe taking on IRS, too
- Lawmaker: Wisconsin’s John Doe like Christie’s ‘Bridgegate’
- Target files civil rights lawsuit against Wisconsin’s John Doe prosecutors
- Disparate treatment: Civil rights lawsuit claims conservative speech trampled
- Liberal group looking to take Wisconsin’s John Doe national
- John Doe judge: ‘Results of the John Doe speak for themselves’
- John Doe special prosecutor appeals judge’s ruling quashing subpoenas
- John Doe prosecutor pushed for brain-damaged man’s conviction in ATF debacle
- Conservatives counterpunch John Doe prosecutors’ move to stall injunction
- Shadowy John Doe investigator invokes federalism in civil rights lawsuit
- John Doe prosecutors wanted higher-priced lawyers, source says
- Secret agent Dean Nickel’s defense: ‘Dean Nickel is not responsible’
- D’oh! John Doe prosecutors claim secrecy protection – after filing secret documents
- Recusal in John Doe case raises questions of fairness, purpose
- Absolute immunity makes it tough to prosecute the prosecutors of John Doe
- Poll suggests Dems’ big ‘secret’ weapon against Walker is backfiring
- ‘Easy target’: Kelly Rindfleisch breaks silence about John Doe probe
- SCOTUS ruling on campaign finance shows abuse of John Doe, targets say
- Nobody will say what John Doe’s shadow man did, but taxpayers are paying his legal bill
- Judge denies John Doe prosecutors’ move to dismiss civil rights suit
- Civil rights expert: John Doe law is ‘un-American,’ like something from ‘Nazi Germany’
- Target: John Doe prosecutors making up campaign law as they go along
- John Doe, as it is being used, must go, WI senator says
- John Doe target says prosecutors latest move another delay tactic
- John Doe prosecutors sound defensive in latest court filings
- Federal judge denies John Doe prosecutors’ motion to stall civil rights case
- Media coalition asks judge to open sealed John Doe documents
- Are John Doe prosecutors sweating out federal judge’s decision?
- John Doe is dead: Judge stops WI prosecutors’ probe into conservatives
- This is what the Fourth Amendment looks like?
- What’s next for now-defunct John Doe probe?
- Appeals court stalls judge’s order halting John Doe probe
- Federal judge’s ruling could open up sealed John Doe records
- Federal judge orders John Doe probe shut down again
- Lawmakers call for review of GAB’s secret John Doe activities, funds
- Lawyers, lawyers everywhere and other dispatches from John Doe Land
- Secret’s out: The world is beginning to learn more about WI’s John Doe
- Still their little secret? Questions remain on John Doe gag order
- Appeals Court declares portions of Wisconsin campaign finance law unconstitutional
- John Doe prosecutors suddenly support opening sealed court records
- Expert: It’s as if GAB decided ‘Citizens United didn’t exist’
- John Doe prosecutors voice phony outrage, legal source says
- GAB still reviewing court ruling declaring WI campaign finance law unconstitutional
- State Farm still doesn’t want to cover John Doe prosecutor’s legal bills
- For the Walker-hating left, John Doe is ‘Mission Accomplished’
- Sources: No urgency in WI Supreme Court on John Doe
- Would Walker settlement with John Doe prosecutors be a deal with the devil?
- Contempt questions surround reported John Doe deal talks
- Walker’s John Doe response raises more questions than answers
- Sources: Attorney General passes on defending GAB in John Doe cases
- Attorney to judge: Don’t let John Doe prosecutor ‘moot’ injunction
- John Doe targets sue Wisconsin’s Government Accountability Board
- Federal judge says his order halting John Doe probe should be clear to prosecutor
- John Doe special prosecutor’s bill still shrouded in secrecy
- ‘Are these kind of armed pre-dawn raids standard operating procedure?’
- John Doe special prosecutor obeys judge’s order
- ‘Never-ending’ John Doe never ended, WSJ reports
- Appeals court upholds judge’s order shutting down John Doe probe
- O’Keefe keeps collecting big wins in John Doe lawsuit
- John Doe I judge says he’s not responsible for John Doe II
- Will taxpayers have to pay for frivolity of John Doe prosecutors?
- John Doe prosecutors jump back into the dark?
- What about those prosecutors? Questions surround other John Doe DAs
- Humiliated in court, WI Dems take their anti-conservative John Doe probe to the media
- Federal judge blasts John Doe prosecutors – again – as he denies records release
- Right on cue: Document dump fuels anti-Walker donation drive
- Wall Street Journal points out ‘disgrace’ of mainstream John Doe reporting
- Expert: John Doe raids raise ‘troubling’ Fourth Amendment questions
- Kelly Rindfleisch tells conservatives, ‘Don’t back down’
- Mainstream media forced to walk back Walker ‘criminal scheme’ narrative
- John Doe prosecutors engaged in premature justification, conservatives say
- Is John Doe probe a case of a mini NSA in Wisconsin?
- AG opinion means accountability board’s John Doe secrets are safe — for now
- Senator asks attorney general to compel GAB to open up its books
- GAB now playing secrets in state John Doe lawsuit
- Will John Doe prosecutors launch lengthy probe against Trek Bicycle?
- John Doe prosecutors engaged in war of words — lots and lots of words
- Judge denies conservatives’ request to add GAB to civil rights lawsuit
- Oral arguments set in John Doe prosecutors’ appeal
- In John Doe Land, the left doesn’t illegally coordinate
- John Doe document blitz must have broken mainstream media’s heart
- Senator: Looks like accountability board is hiding something
- Kelly Rindfleisch appeal to test validity of John Doe digital searches
- Conservatives in John Doe battle know disclosure comes with a heavy price
- Appeals court orders release of some John Doe documents
- Taxpayers on the hook up to $25,000 for GAB’s legal maneuvers
- Overheated media erroneously bring back Walker ‘criminal scheme’ theme
- ‘Retaliation’: Docs show state prosecutors launched mini-NSA probe of WI conservatives
- John Doe prosecutors take desperate, unethical slap
- Walker ‘smoking gun’ story has tiny glaring flaw
- Wisconsin prosecutors aim to shut down conservatives
- Conservatives appeal to common sense in John Doe appeals case
- Conservatives say ‘incorrect disclosure’ of John Doe docs no ‘tiny error’
- First Amendment big guns back targets of John Doe probe
- Was John Doe judge a rubber stamp?
- $25,000 and counting: WI taxpayers’ bill so far to defend GAB and its ‘monster’
- Another blow for Wisconsin’s restrictive campaign finance law
- Wisconsin prosecutors appeal for protection from blowback in partisan probe
- Is John Doe story colored with a bit of ‘Macbeth?’
- GAB director says agency just following the law in John Doe probe
- Kelly Rindfleisch: Where are the tears for the kids the Milwaukee school system failed?
- Rindfleisch attorney: Appeals court can protect the Fourth Amendment in Digital Age
- Source: Wisconsin Supreme Court doesn’t want political heat of John Doe case
- Appeals court reverses John Doe injunction, but Wisconsin’s secret war far from over
- A whistleblower’s story: Taking on a ‘hyper-partisan’ district attorney
- Conservative O’Keefe seeks investigation into John Chisholm and his John Doe
- Who’s paying the bill? Report casts questions on GAB and John Doe payments
- Target of secret John Doe probe is fighting back and speaking out
- The day John Doe rushed through the door
- Rindfleisch: ‘Rape’ not too strong a word for how violated John Doe targets feel
- Conservative group asks court to stop John Doe ‘constitutional injury’
- Conservatives to appeals court: ‘You don’t know Doe’
- Armed and growing: Milwaukee County DA beefs up his ‘police force’
- Federal judge stops John Doe prosecutors from bothering conservative group
- Wisconsin Supreme Court takes another pass on John Doe case
- No surprise: Bice buries the lead, Walker follows the law
- Federalism v. individual rights: A conversation with Eric O’Keefe
- Report: No district attorney will investigate District Attorney John Chisholm
- Appeals court denies request to rehear John Doe civil rights case
- Voters say ‘yes’ to Walker, ‘no’ to John Doe, law expert says
- Vos: There will be reforms to John Doe, GAB
- GAB, Milwaukee County DA bail on key provision behind war on conservatives
- John Doe lawsuit could be headed to U.S. Supreme Court
- Kelly Rindfleisch will fight on in Fourth Amendment case
- John Doe froze conservative speech, targets say
- Conservatives to court: Open up records on GAB’s role in John Doe
- Did the GAB doctor documents to cover their tracks in John Doe?
- Wisconsin’s Van Hollen says goodbye to AG post, John Doe
- Rindfleisch appeals to Supreme Court in John Doe Fourth Amendment abuse case
- Audit: GAB has failed to follow the law
- Wisconsin Supreme Court to take up John Doe complaints
- ‘R word’ surfaces in wake of state Supreme Court taking up John Doe challenges
- GAB won’t say whether it has reauthorized its role in John Doe probe
- Rogue agency defied judges to carry out partisan probe of Wisconsin conservatives
- ‘Outside the … law’: Lawmakers call for investigation of GAB
- Attorney: GAB’s John Doe justifications don’t hold up to law
- Isn’t it ironic: Mainstream silence follows reports of secret GAB Gmail in John Doe
- GAB offers contradictory defense of its John Doe activities
- O’Keefe officially asks judge to open probe into John ‘Doe’ Chisholm
- State lawmakers look to investigate the GAB and its investigators
- One year ago, judge’s ruling shakes up John Doe probe
- Doe possessed: ‘They have information about every aspect of our lives’
- GAB plays victim card in ‘complicated’ John Doe, campaign finance farce
- Public defender asks Supreme Court to take up John Doe-related Fourth Amendment case
- GAB has a sudden change of heart on campaign finance reform
- O’Keefe takes his case against John Doe to U.S. Supreme Court
- Conservatives: GAB’s meeting minutes show gap in board’s John Doe oversight
- How Wisconsin media support DA’s war on conservatives
- Federal judge’s judgment takes John Doe probe off life support
- Following judge’s order killing John Doe, what’s next?
- First Amendment expert: Wisconsin ought to be ’embarrassed’ by John Doe
- Does chief justice have conflict of interest in John Doe case?
- Conservative groups ask U.S. Supreme Court to defend rights of John Doe targets
- Is John Doe special prosecutor still working with partisan DA, GAB?
- Prosecutor misstatements continue to shape John Doe narrative, Walker’s future
- $775,000 and rising — Wisconsin taxpayers’ bill to defend John Doe prosecutors
- Milwaukee DA to be ‘special guest’ at fundraiser for Supreme Court justice
- John Doe reform bill aims to break silence of abusive investigations
- Reform bill would open up the John Doe books to taxpayers
- John Doe target says they are the victim of identity theft
- On Sunshine Week, GAB still operating in the dark
- Wisconsin Supreme Court rejects Rindfleisch Fourth Amendment appeal
- Secretive John Doe special prosecutor who fancies a good leak screams secrecy breach
- Kelly Rindfleisch hopes to avoid becoming first John Doe political prisoner
- GAB, friend of the John Doe, just wants to be a ‘friend of the court’
- Kelly Rindfleisch, Chisholm’s political prize, to begin sentence on Thursday
- U.S. Supreme Court could soon decide whether to take John Doe Case
- Did chief justice show her hand in dissenting John Doe opinion?
- New documents expose GAB’s ‘parallel’ probe expenditures
- Lawmaker: Chief justice’s civil rights complaint is ‘pathetic’
- John Doe reform bill stalls in Legislature
- Who was the reporter outside Cindy Archer’s house?
- U.S. Supreme Court to consider hearing John Doe-related case
- Experts: Chances rise that U.S. Supreme Court will take John Doe case
- Do Chisholm’s public comments on John Doe cross ethical line?
- John Chisholm’s 50 shades of ‘raid’
- Five years later: America just learning ‘tyrannical’ secrets of Wisconsin’s John Doe
- U.S. Supreme Court could announce decision on John Doe case later this month
- Wisconsin as a New Yorker cartoon of itself
- Will discovery reveal more bombshell information about ‘rogue’ GAB?
- Political prisoner Kelly Rindfleisch on home confinement, working for O’Keefe
- Warrants command John Doe targets to remain silent
- U.S. Supreme Court denies review of John Doe-related case
- Was John Chisholm John Doe distracted?
- John Doe reform bill stuck in legislative waiting game
- GAB reform stalled, new docs show GAB working closely with John Doe prosecutors
- Kelly Rindfleisch takes her Fourth Amendment fight to the U.S. Supreme Court
- What happened to Kelly Rindfleisch could happen to you
- Justice asks state Supreme Court to reconsider Rindfleisch Fourth Amendment appeal
- Justice Gableman: Warrants in Rindfleisch case amount to ‘fishing expedition’
- ‘Did they get me?’: Docs reveal long-time John Doe spying operation
- Kelly Rindfleisch: ‘I fear I will never get justice’
- Former Walker aide to file civil rights lawsuit against John Doe prosecutor
- Cindy Archer: Chisholm’s John Doe was ‘campaign of intimidation’
- National Review: Political John Doe victimized 16-year-old boy
- GAB’s Kennedy had a friend in IRS’ Lois Lerner
- Vos: Time to ‘double down’ on GAB reform in wake of reported IRS links
- Left’s loud transparency defenders silent on secret John Doe
- The John Doe investigation might finally be over; Supreme Court to rule Thursday
- Wisconsin Supreme Court shuts down John Doe investigation
- Wisconsin Supreme Court shuts down John Doe investigation, affirms First Amendment
- Kelly Rindfleisch seeks release following death of John Doe probe
- Legal experts on right and left seek review of Rindfleisch John Doe conviction
- John Doe horror stories: ‘I felt completely helpless in my own home’
- Hillary Clinton plays victim card
- Legal expert: Abrahamson and John Doe civil rights cases like day and night
- Attorney: audio confirms traumatic John Doe raid of Cindy Archer’s home
- John Doe prosecutors open new assault on conservative targets
- John Doe prosecutors’ tape of raid raises questions about missing moments
- John Doe reform bill starts to move again
- Conservatives ask Abrahamson to turn over John Doe-related records
- John Doe investigators say there are more tapes of raids
- Legal defense of rogue John Doe agents costs taxpayers nearly $1.2 million
- Explosive email exposes GAB attorney’s partisan motives in John Doe probe
- An open letter to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s Patrick Marley
- Wisconsin GAB reform bill could be ready in a few weeks, sources say
- Updated complaint shines more light on dark day in John Doe
- Partisan Falk once urged GAB to ‘get around constitutional right to free speech’
- Legislature to take up John Doe reform in October, GOP leadership says
- Knudson on GAB: ‘We need to take this thing apart’
- Did the GAB ‘illegally coordinate’ with left-leaning groups?
- John Doe prosecutors get a win, practice legal gymnastics again
- Wall Street Journal: GAB targeted conservative justices in John Doe defense
- Craig says bill to investigate GAB’s John Doe activities coming soon
- New emails show GAB assisting in John Doe defense after judge said stop
- ‘Nonpartisan’ GAB staff has partisan past
- John Doe political prisoner Kelly Rindfleisch nears end of her sentence
- Will the voices of the John Doe victims be heard?
- Supreme Court will not hear Kelly Rindfleisch’s Fourth Amendment case
- Judge orders GAB to turn over emails with liberal groups
- The silence of the left is the Dems’ transparency hypocrisy
- GAB chairman: ‘I wasn’t offended’ by John Doe raids
- Sources: Bill would overhaul controversial GAB
- GAB fighting to keep its secrets out of public eye
- GAB overhaul would eliminate blank checks on taxypayer dime
- John Doe victims to tell their stories in Fox News special
- Fiery GAB hearing invokes ghost of Joe McCarthy
- Why did accountability board use Gmail accounts to talk John Doe?
- Prosecutor plugged into ‘hotspot’ to email sensitive John Doe docs
- Judge holds off on release of GAB’s ‘very embarrassing’ records
- Craig blasts newspaper for Dem ‘press release’ coverage of John Doe bill
- Hyperbole happens as John Doe reform passes on party-line vote
- Fireworks coming on GAB and campaign finance reform debate
- GAB living on borrowed time?
- Back to the Future: Dems walk out on vote again
- Newly released John Doe docs reveal much more about rogue GAB
- Lawmakers want answers on GAB director Kevin Kennedy’s IRS conversations
- WSJ: Wisconsin’s political John Doe targeted national conservatives
- Target of political John Doe targets reluctant senators in robocall campaign
- Kevin Kennedy’s spin to save the GAB and his job contradicts the record
- EXCLUSIVE: Wisconsin Senate majority leader, others also targeted in John Doe
- GAB’s defense of John Doe database raises more question than answers
- Spokeswoman: Fitzgerald not ruling out extraordinary session on GAB bill
- GAB kept pushing political probe despite daunting evidence problems
- Memo to Legislature: Take a closer look at GAB Judge’s conduct
- Senate passes GAB overhaul, campaign finance reform in ‘extraordinary’ session
- Conservatives to court on GAB’s secrets: ‘Enough is enough’
- Milwaukee citizens petition Walker to remove DA John Chisholm from office
- Rogue GAB pushing strained legal arguments to keep its secrets
- GAB just about dead as final overhaul bill passes Assembly
- Speech cop, prosecutors argue for secrecy in the face of GAB extinction
- Milwaukee Journal Sentinel mentions petition to remove Milwaukee DA — finally
- Taxpayers on hook for at least $187,000 to defend rogue GAB
- Court filing shows GAB’s Kennedy asking Lois Lerner if IRS ‘would be interested’
- Lawmaker asking GAB to open its John Doe records
- Did GAB’s Kevin Kennedy break the law in John Doe talks with Lois Lerner?
- John Doe victims still in legal limbo four months after Supreme Court ruling
- John Doe political prisoner Kelly Rindfleisch completes probation
- Lawmaker advises GAB’s Kevin Kennedy to ‘obey the law’
- Walker yet to sign GAB overhaul bill
- Wisconsin Supreme Court to rule on motion to reconsider John Doe ruling
- Wisconsin Supreme Court reaffirms John Doe is dead
- John Doe prosecutor gets no respect from targets he intimidated for years
- Former John Doe special prosecutor has little chance before high court
- Political speech ‘watchdogs’ urge continuation of illegal John Doe
- Attorney General: End John Doe case now
- Attorney General: John Chisholm broke campaign finance law
- Milwaukee County Board signals support to fight for illegal John Doe
- The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s selective outrage on transparency
- District attorneys want out of political John Doe business
- Did DA who launched political John Doe probe break campaign finance laws?
- With Walker’s signature, the GAB is dead
- Conservatives, transparency win! GAB settles lawsuit, agrees to open up its secrets
- O’Keefe to Chisholm: Go ahead, make my day
- Bill creates legislative committee to investigate John Doe investigations
- Chisholm quietly returns illegal campaign contribution
- John Doe target: ‘Where and when does this abuse end?’
- ‘Good government’ group that celebrated Lois Lerner mourns for GAB
- Falk blasts incompetence of GAB, prosecutors in John Doe, emails show
- Defense attorney: Liberal John Doe cheerleaders beware
- Bad Santa: John Doe prosecutor delivers letters to the people he spied on
- Craig asks attorney general to compel GAB to open up John Doe records
- Former John Doe prosecutor not in compliance with court order
- What’s it like to find out the government has been spying on you?
- John Doe prosecutors ‘just playing games,’ says Cindy Archer’s attorney
- Supreme Court says no to John Doe prosecutors; Abrahamson lashes out
- Mainstream media displays selective principles on open records
- John Doe targets tell Supreme Court that prosecutor is not complying with order
- Schimel says decision coming soon on open records complaint against GAB
- Walker’s office won’t open hearing into Milwaukee County DA John Chisholm
- Petitioner against John Chisholm: Walker’s office dropped the ball
- Chisholm’s use of big guns in John Doe fight raises legal questions
- Lawmaker takes one more try at records request with reluctant GAB
- Schimel says John Doe prosecutors have no right to illegally obtained ‘evidence’
- GAB’s John Doe secrets could soon be released to the public
- John Doe targets: Chisholm has no right to share illegally seized ‘evidence’
- Conservatives: Attorney General alone has authority over John Doe petition
- AG Brad Schimel on John Doe authority question: It’s complicated
- Court denies DAs’ motion to open up John Doe records to private attorneys
- Chisholm’s unaccountable defense: ‘The records do not exist’
- Unsealed John Doe documents show view from Chisholm’s world
- Did John Doe cost Larry Nelson an election?
- Schimel: John Doe investigators living in ‘Alice in Wonderland world’
- First John Doe documents released from lawsuit show GAB’s partisan motives
- Vos names commissioners, end of GAB inches closer
- Will Senate take up Assembly amendment watering down John Doe reforms?
- Important court days coming soon to John Doe Land
- John Doe freedom fighter wins big victory against the IRS
- Oral arguments set in John Doe civil rights lawsuit
- Attorney to Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reporter: ‘Your article is ridiculous’
- Judge Lynn Adelman on John Doe records custody: ‘I don’t care about the law’
- Documents raise questions about John Doe judge’s review of warrant
- Bruce Murphy: When journalists (don’t) attack
- New docs show GAB spent more than 2,500 hours on John Doe probe
- Chisholm invokes his illegal John Doe probe in re-election campaign
- Haas’ emails in GAB’s John Doe probe should give senators pause
- Liberal judge dismisses civil rights lawsuit against John Doe prosecutors
- Fitzgerald: GAB’s Michael Haas not long for new administrator role