For months, conservative donors, activists and groups in Wisconsin were terrorized by partisan DAs using loosely-interpreted election law to comb through their fianances, enter their homes and question their friends and families – all in an effort to “prove” that Scott Walker had illegally coordinated with grassroots efforts to win his recall election and subsequent re-election campaign.
The bizarre series of events, which would make an excellent Lifetime movie, honestly, culminated in a ruling this morning from the Wisconsin Supreme Court who were, shall we say, not very kind to the law enforcement and local government officials who concocted the elaborate intimidation scheme.
To be clear, this conclusion ends the John Doe investigation because the special prosecutor’s legal theory is unsupported in either reason or law. Consequently, the investigation is closed. Consistent with our decision and the order entered by Reserve Judge Peterson, we order that the special prosecutor and the district attorneys involved in this investigation must cease all activities related to the investigation, return all property seized in the investigation from any individual or organization, and permanently destroy all copies of information and other materials obtained through the investigation.
All Unnamed Movants are relieved of any duty to cooperate further with the investigation.
According to the prosecutors, merely being supportive of a candidate was juuuuuuust enough to make you complicit in their campaign. The court, clearly, disagreed, noting that the freedom of speech isn’t just something the Founders scrawled on the back of a napkin in the hopes that one day someone would find a workaround that allowed them to bust up coordinated meetings, in private homes, seeking all sorts of private information. And they weren’t subtle about their feelings, either.
In other words, this whole thing? Not an excellent idea, guys.
Now that the courts have spoken in Wisconsin, the plaintiffs in this case may finally be able to file civil claims against the Wisconsin DAs. They had tried earlier, but the 7th Circuit put a halt to their lawsuit, on the condition that it wait until the state courts had spoken. Now that they have, it may be time for an even more intersting proceeding.