One Wisconsin Now Asks Brown County District Attorney to Interview Lasee About Election ‘Crimes’ He Claims to Have Witnessed

Floor Statements During Voter ID Suppression Bill Debate Raise Serious Questions About Lasee's Lack of Reporting Crimes

MADISON, Wis. — One Wisconsin Now has sent Brown County District Attorney John P. Zakowski a letter requesting he interview Republican State Sen. Frank Lasee (R-No Address Listed) after Lasee claimed to have witnessed several crimes related to voting, which Lasee admitted he did not report to authorities.

“Sen. Frank Lasee claimed on the floor of the Senate that he is personally aware of three individuals who may have voted improperly in a previous Brown County election,” said Scot Ross, One Wisconsin Now Executive Director. “We are requesting the Brown County District Attorney immediately interview Sen. Lasse under oath to determine if any voter fraud occurred, as well as determine why Sen. Lasee failed to report any such crime to law enforcement.”

In the midst of debate over the Republican Voter Identification bill Tuesday evening, Lasee said he specifically knew three individuals who were not residents of Brown County, but who cast votes in a Brown County election. From statements made by Lasee, the votes appear to be ones that would have been cast on the referendum to approve a 0.5 percent sales tax to finance renovations for Lambeau Field. This referendum was ratified September 12, 2000 by a more-than 5,000 vote margin.

Lasee’s comments on the floor debate:

I talked to several people when we had that controversial vote in Brown County about taking and adding a half a percent sales tax to support the stadium. And taxing people about 20 million dollars a year, it was a very close vote. I have personally talked to three different people who told me they lived out of the Green Bay area but drove up and voted in that election because it was so important to them. They weren’t residents of Brown County, they broke the law, but it was important to them. And under our current system, you can get away with that. And that is personal experience that I saw to personally.
[Wisconsin Senate Floor Debate, 5/17/11, 8:56 p.m.]

When Lasee was asked by a fellow senator about why he did not report these crimes Lasee said:

No, at the time I did not. I didn’t really think about it quite honestly. I didn’t give it a lot of thought. How am I going to go back and change an election?

“Law enforcement must investigate to find out if multiple crimes have occurred with the knowledge of Sen. Lasee,” said Ross. “What did Frank Lasee know about these crimes, when did he know it and why did he fail to do anything about it?”

In addition to this referendum question, numerous primaries were also on the ballot for the September 2000 Brown County election, including primary contests for U.S. Senate, U.S. Congress and the state legislature. Lasee was also on the ballot, although in an uncontested primary election.

“Frank Lasee owes us an explanation for why he failed to report these crimes, if in fact they actually occurred,” said Ross. “If Frank Lasee was lying on the floor of the Senate, he should admit it and apologize immediately.”

This is not the first time Lasee’s credibility has been questioned over information he claimed to possess. As noted on One Wisconsin Now’s “Meet the Majority” website, in 2007, Lasee wrote to the Brown Deer School Board President demanding an investigation into a supposed “sex hallway” at the high school, an allegation later dismissed as utterly false. Lasse wrote, “There is a hallway that is off limits to white kids, where the black kids have sex. When the teachers leave the class rooms, the same thing happens…I wonder if the Brown Deer school counts a pregnant girl as two students to get more taxpayer money.” [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 9/26/07]

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One Wisconsin Now is a statewide communications network specializing in effective earned media and online organizing to advance progressive leadership and values.