Ron Johnson was on the Board of Chamco: A Gov-Financed Group That Helps Businesses Get Gov Assistance

Ron Johnson has served on the Board of Direcgtors of the Oshkosh Industrial Development Corporation (Chamco), which according to their website is a "public/private partnership" that is :

...funded in part by the business community, the City of Oshkosh and Winnebago County...

According to their website, Chamco helps businesses get government grants:

The professional staff of Chamco Inc. has successfully helped area business apply for and secure over a million dollars in Customized Labor Training (CLT) grants. The CLT grant is a state program designed to assist companies that are investing in new technologies or manufacturing processes by providing a grant of up to 50% of the cost of training employees on the new technologies.  In addition to helping area businesses secure grants for employee training, Chamco will aid area business in securing Transportation Economic Assistance grants.

'Caging' stories full of contradictions

Some great contradictions in the Journal Sentinel's underwritten story on plans by the Republican Party, Tea Party, and Americans for Prosperity to coordinate voter suppression activities:

In the recording, Dake said the state Republican Party chairman Reince Priebus and Americans for Prosperity and its state head, Mark Block, were involved in talks about how to go after voter fraud.

Block, whose conservative group has helped organize tea party rallies, said initially Monday that he was "absolutely unequivocally" not involved in the planning of what Ross and One Wisconsin alleged. But Dake said he knew that Block had attended more than one meeting to talk about targeting voter fraud.

After that, Block acknowledged that he had had discussions with Dake and others about targeting voter fraud. He said Americans for Prosperity had obtained voter names and sent 500 letters to voters asking them to join the organization. Block said he believed the voter names were purchased from the City of Milwaukee and said the purpose of the letters was to see whether they could be delivered or not.

What we don't have here is a failure to coordinate

So, are the Republican Party, Tea Party and Americans for Prosperity in cahoots to hold down voter turnout in November. Who you gonna believe, Mark Block or your own lying ears?

“There have never been any discussions on any type of coordination,” said Mark Block with Americans for Prosperity, adding that OWN’s allegations are based on “non-factual information.”-- Wis. Radio Network

Mark Block is the guy with a history of legal and ethical problems for illegal campaign communication, which involved sending some official-looking postcards to voters. That experience would come in very handy in a vote caging operation.

Here's Tim Dake at the June meeting of Tea Party types:

So, what we're hoping is that the various groups in the coalition plus Americans for Prosperity and Mark Block, who has been in on this, and the Republican Party, and this is coming all the way from the top: Reince Priebus has said, "We're in." And there's a reason why these guys are volunteering to work with us. They have access to what they call Voter Vault, you know the records of voting.-- Tim Dake, GrandSons Of Liberty.

A lot more information, and an audio recording of the meeting, are available here.

AFL-CIO Mail Reaches 146,000 Wisconsin Workers

Today the AFL-CIO doubled down on its commitment to inform union members on endorsed candidates Russ Feingold and Tom Barrett. In two mailers referencing their opponents, Ron Johnson and Scott Walker, the AFL-CIO highlights the issues that affect working and retired families across Wisconsin.

The Gubernatorial mail piece states that Walker sides with Wall St. over Main St.  The mail points out that along with raising credit card fees for working families, Walker is promising $2 billion in tax breaks and giveaways to the wealthiest Wisconsinites. 

The Senate mail piece highlights that Johnson supports trade policies like NAFTA and CAFTA that send thousands of Wisconsin jobs over seas.  It reads:   “Ron Johnson always chooses free trade and big corporations over working families. When thousands of workers are laid off all he can say is, ‘That just happens. It’s unfortunate.’”

8th Congressional District:  Reid Ribble on trade is going to a targeted universe of approximately 8,000 households in the 8th CD.

Tom Barrett to Appear at Netroots Wisconsin

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We're happy to announce that Tom Barrett will be one of the candidates appearing at Netroots Wisconsin in our Meet The Candidates session. Tom Barrett (Democratic candidate for Governor) will appear with other progressive candidates at the Netroots Wisconsin conference on Saturday.  We hope to have other candidates to announce as confirmed through the rest of the week.

Advance Registration for Netroots Wisconsin ends at 6 PM on Wednesday, Sept. 22.  We will accept at-the-door registrations at the same price, but cannot guarantee lunch for those who register at the door. Come to Madison on Saturday for a great opportunity to meet and talk with progressive activists from around the state.

We will attempt to live-stream some of the conference for those who cannot attend at our web site http://netrootswisconsin.org.  More information on the conference is available there.

Latest NRSC Press Release Again Refers to Ron Johnson as a "Self-Made" Man

Despite claims that the campaign is not intentionally trying to propagate an image that Ron Johnson is a "self-made" man, the National Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee had the nerve to actually use the term in their latest press-release:

Ron Johnson is a self-made, successful businessman with a 30-year record of creating good jobs in his state.

This comes despite the fact that Johnson has recently feigned surprise that supporters and the media frequently refer to him as a self-made man and untruthfully claimed that he had no role in giving the media and supporters that impression. 

The truth, is that Johnson is about as far as one could get from being a "self-made" man:  His father-in-law, billionaire plastics titan Harold Curler, created PACUR when Ron Johnson (by his own admission) wasn't even in the state.  

Huge voter suppression plot exposed

A massive, coordinated and illegal plan to suppress Wisconsin voter turnout in November was exposed today by One Wisconsin Now (OWN).

The plan, targeting minority voters and students, is a joint effort of the Republican Party, Americans for Prosperity, and Tea Party groups. OWN has somehow obtained both copies of the plan and a recording of a meeting at which it was discussed, both available on a new website, SaveWisconsinVote2010.org

OWN Executive Director Scot Ross said the group will request investigations by the U.S. Attorney’s Office, as well as the Wisconsin Attorney General’s Election Integrity Task Force and the Government Accountability Board, to insure the right to vote is not stolen by these plans.

The term for what the right-wing intends to do is called "vote caging," and involves sending mail to addresses on voter lists and using returned mail to challenge voters at the polls on election day.

Gag law on county secrets?

Well, here's a novel idea, from one of Milwaukee County's public servants, Sup. Joe Rice: Let's make it illegal for people who work for the taxpayers to tell the people what they know.

It's prompted, although he says it's not,  by Sup. Lynn DeBruin's disclosure of shocking comments made at a closed meeting by the guy who was running the county's mental health complex.

Her whistle-blowing set off all sorts of outrage, discussion, and proposals to correct the deplorable situation.

The county board -- I am not making this up -- censured her for disclosing what was said behind closed doors. But the guy who made the outrageous statement that sexual assaults of women were a "trade-off" to reduce the violence likely in an all-male ward, has been demoted and is no longer in charge, although County Exec Scott Walker has refused to fire him. 

Now Rice wants to fine elected officials or county employes who disclose what happens behind closed doors.

Oh, and it would be part of the Ethics Code.

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