Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Diamond Jim Doyle at It Again

The Milwaukee* Journal Sentinel (yes, out of principle I am still using the asterisk) is reporting (this is a couple of days old but it is extremely important in light of the November election so I’ll post it nonetheless) that a lawyer working on behalf of the Jim Doyle campaign lobbied three Democratic members of the State Elections Board the night before the decision was made to order gubernatorial candidate Mark Green to divest nearly five-hundred thousand dollars in campaign contributions.

What’s this?! Governor Jim Doyle doing something politically, not to mention morally, unethical in Wisconsin? I am shocked! Utterly and entirely shocked!

Alright, what Attorney Michael S. Maistelman did was perfectly legal, but regardless it is a bit suspicious and certainly unethical. Here are some important questions to ask – Why did Maistelman deny to reporters when they first questioned him about whether or not he worked for the Doyle campaign? Conflict of interest, perhaps? If lobbying board members is ethical then why didn’t Mark Green’s attorney lobby the Republican board members or even the lone Libertarian member? More importantly, however, if Maistelman is working for the Doyle campaign, why was he involved at all if Wisconsin Democracy Campaign, not Doyle’s campaign, filed the suit against Green? Even lefty Wisconsin bloggers are admitting that Governor Jim Doyle should never have been involved in this in the first place and that he fumbled an issue that could have easily given him some relay.

There are several distinct ironies about this revelation. First off, Governor Jim Doyle’s campaign apparently released a television advertisement saying he fought corruption in Wisconsin politics the next day after news broke about the e-mails to the board members.

Another is that Attorney Michael S. Maistelman, the lawyer in question, was apparently an up-and-coming lawyer before this event and now he’s made one of the dumbest mistakes anybody, political or otherwise, can ever make – leaving a paper (or in this case an e-mail) trail.

There are at least two essential rules to politics I can not stress enough: 1) Don’t cheat and 2) if you absolutely must cheat then don’t get caught! Doyle’s campaign lawyer violated both those rules and now he and his employer will likely pay the price, if not now then on Election Day.