wisconsin capitol
Press Release
September 17, 2012

One Wisconsin Now Calls for End to Walker’s ‘Gravy Train’ for Michael, Best & Friedrich

Politically Connected Law Firm Could Receive Even More Tax Dollars to Defend Law Stripping Wisconsin Workers of Their Rights

MADISON, Wis. — One Wisconsin Now today called on Gov. Scott Walker to halt the taxpayer-funded gravy train for the politically connected law firm, Michael, Best & Friedrich, and stop using public funds to pay for the continuing legal battle to overturn a court decision declaring Act 10, his controversial law stripping workplace rights from over 175,000 taxpaying state citizens, unconstitutional.

Scot Ross, One Wisconsin Now Executive Director, commented, “According to newspaper reports, MBF has charged taxpayers $728,000 to defend Scott Walker’s unconstitutional scheme to strip Wisconsinites of their workplace rights. Asking hard working taxpayers to fork over even more of their money to pay for his court fight to take away their rights is an outrage. And it needs to stop.”

Staff at Michael, Best & Friedrich, which previously employed Republican National Committee chair Reince Priebus, have contributed over $50,000 to Walker’s campaign account since April 2009. Reports indicate that payments to MBF to defend Walker’s union-stripping bill could go as high as $850,000.

Ross noted that MBF is the same law firm that was paid hundreds of dollars per hour to help Republicans craft the very law recently declared unconstitutional by a state court.

“You have to ask the question that if, as it appears, they couldn’t help draft constitutional legislation in the first place, why are they being rewarded with more taxpayer money for more legal work,” queried Ross.

Adding insult to injury, the same law firm retained by Gov. Walker in the fight to strip worker rights recently admitted publicly that they failed to turn over documents in a case related to their work on behalf of legislative Republicans to gerrymander legislative districts to give themselves a partisan political advantage.

Ross, concluded, “Enough is enough. Governor Walker and legislative Republicans need to derail this publicly funded gravy train with biscuit wheels for the lawyers defending their drive to strip workers of their rights.”

# # #

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

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