All Posts by Empower Wisconsin

Evers’ secret recording could be a felony

Empower Wisconsin | June 16, 2020

By M.D. Kittle 

MADISON — Team Evers’ secret recording of a meeting with Republican legislative leadership last month didn’t merely cross an ethical line, it may have been a felony, according to a newly released review by the non-partisan Legislative Reference Bureau. 

Gov. Tony Evers’ handlers say the Democrat had no knowledge of the conversation, which occurred on May 14, the day after the state Supreme Court struck down the administration’s public health lockdown order. 

On Monday, Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R-Juneau) released LRB’s legal memo outlining how a felony may have been committed by the governor’s staff. 

“If the governor didn’t know that his staff was recording him, this is a bigger problem than he thinks,” Fitzgerald said in a statement. “The governor should be in control of his office — the buck stops with him. So if one of his staff committed a felony, he needs to hold that person accountable.” 

The memo notes that legislative staff was invited to listen on the call between Fitzgerald, Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester), Evers, his chief of staff, Maggie Gau, and the governor’s chief legal Counsel, Ryan Nilsestuen. Under Wisconsin’s one-party consent law, any of the parties with knowledge of the call could have recorded it. That is, the secret recording was legal if Evers or his two top staff members knew about it.  

“(T)he governor was clearly a party to the communication and Chief of Staff Gau and Chief Legal Counsel Nilsestuen were very likely parties to the communication as well, since they were announced by the governor as being on the call and they participated in conversations during the call,” the memo states. 

“However, if another person in the governor’s office recorded the telephone call without the prior consent or authorization of the governor, Chief of Staff Gau, or Chief Legal Counsel Nilsestuen, then the person may well have violated Wis. Stat. § 968.31 (1) since the person was not a party to the communication.”

That’s a Class H felony and is subject to a fine of not more than $10,000 or a term of imprisonment for not more than six years or both.

Fitzgerald is calling on the governor to “immediately make clear” who in his office recorded the conversation, “who authorized it, and what disciplinary actions his staff is facing.” Apparently Evers gave his staff a stern talking to, warning them not to secretly record members of the Legislature again. 

Nilsestuen on Thursday told reporters Evers’ staff had authorized the recording, but he refused to say who recorded the meeting.  

Evers spokespeople did not answer questions from the press following the release of the LRB memo. 

“After bipartisan condemnation of these actions, he (the governor) also needs to assure legislators that no more recordings exist between our members and the governor or his staff,” Fitzgerald said. 

Empower Wisconsin has filed three separate records requests with the governor’s office seeking that information. 

Listen to more:

Explore More
School board recall haters signed Walker recall petition

School board recall haters signed Walker recall petition

By M.D. Kittle MADISON — The Mequon-Thiensville School District establishment has publicly declared their opposition to a recall campaign against…

Read More »

October 15, 2021
John Doe agent’s phony sense of injustice

John Doe agent’s phony sense of injustice

By M.D. Kittle MADISON — Eight years ago this month, law enforcement officers burst into the homes of conservatives at…

Read More »

October 15, 2021
Poser lib group in conservative clothing

Poser lib group in conservative clothing

By M.D. Kittle MADISON — Wisconsin conservative groups be advised: Secure Democracy is not a right-of-center organization. The “nonpartisan” nonprofit…

Read More »

October 15, 2021
School district breaks silence on transgender sexual assault case

School district breaks silence on transgender sexual assault case

By Caroline Downey, National Review Loudoun County (Va.) Public Schools responded Wednesday to a bombshell report that it covered up…

Read More »

October 15, 2021
Tool of the Week: Brad Pfaff, professer of big deeds

Tool of the Week: Brad Pfaff, professer of big deeds

It takes a bold man to put himself in the middle of events he has had little or nothing to…

Read More »

October 14, 2021
All Woke Up: UW’s compulsory Woke quiz

All Woke Up: UW’s compulsory Woke quiz

MADISON — University of Wisconsin-Madison students must take and pass a critical race theory (CRT) quiz before they can enroll…

Read More »

October 14, 2021

1 thought on “Evers’ secret recording could be a felony

  • This is the same state that violated Republican rights when the Democrats had them swatted and arrested for bogus campaign violations.

    The penalty that the Democrats incurred for violating the civil rights of these Republicans?
    Nothing.

Leave a Reply to John Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *