wisconsin capitol
Press Release
September 20, 2010
Media Contact
Mike Browne, Deputy Director
(608) 444-3483
One Wisconsin Now

Tea Party-RPW Emails from Last Week Show Voter Suppression Effort On-Going

Despite Denials, Contradictory Statements, Dake Emailed Voter Suppression Documents Featured on SaveWisconsinsVote2010.org Just Last Thursday

MADISON, Wis. — Despite denials from participants, a voter suppression plan by the Republican Party of Wisconsin, Americans for Prosperity-WI and the state’s leading Tea Party organizations is still active, and as recently as last Thursday Wisconsin Tea Party leader Tim Dake emailed several documents outlining plans to other partners in the effort. One Wisconsin Now released the email today.

“The Tea Party groups and Americans for Prosperity are claiming their collusion with the Republican Party of Wisconsin is long over,” said Scot Ross, One Wisconsin Now. “Then why did Tim Dake from the Tea Party send these documents from the Republican Party outlining the voter suppression plan and the non-disclosure agreement five days ago?”

One Wisconsin Now is releasing an email sent by Dake on Thursday, September 16. Included in the email are the three documents now posted at One Wisconsin Now’s voter protection website, www.SaveWisconsinsVote2010.org. The documents were forwarded from an August 30 email from Jon Waclawski, Republican Party of Wisconsin Chief Counsel and Finance Director. It includes a list of counties “already covered” according to Waclawski, and notes the importance of going after 16,000 eligible voters in Milwaukee County.

The documents included in the September 16 Dake email, which is available at http://www.onewisconsinnow.org/files/teaPartyEmail20100916.pdf 

  • A non-disclosure agreement for voter suppression participants, signed by Waclawski.
  • An affidavit and instruction process for voter suppression activities, which includes direction about photographing the homes of people targeted for voter suppression activities.
  • A strategic planning memo that includes the first part of the plan was a voter caging mailing to the 16th Assembly District, which has the third-highest number of African-American voters of any Assembly District in the state. [http://www.legis.state.wi.us/lrb/pubs/wb/02wb3.pdf]

Tea Party leader Dake, as well as Mark Jefferson, RPW Executive Director and Mark Block, head of the Americans for Prosperity-WI told various reporters the allegations by One Wisconsin Now were untrue and indicated such activity had been abandoned. The email from September 16 contradicts these claims.

But Tim Dake with Grandsons of Liberty, a Tea Party group, says the cooperative effort discussed at that meeting, held in Marshfield, never got off the ground, and he’s never seen the list mentioned by One Wisconsin Now. [Wisconsin Radio Network, 9/20/10]

Mark Jefferson, executive director of the state Republican Party, said the GOP had never gone ahead with any of the mailing plans Dake described in the recording. [Wisconsin State Journal, 9/20/10]

[Mark] 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. [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 9/21/2010]

“Tim Dake’s email from last Thursday with the Republican Party of Wisconsin’s direction is the smoking gun that not only is their voter caging effort going full-steam ahead, but also targeting Milwaukee County voters are their top priority now,” said Ross. “If they are not targeting minority voters for suppression, it must be amazing coincidence they, by admission, first targeted the Assembly District with the third-highest number of African-Americans of any district in the state.”

Late Monday, Block finally acknowledged mailing the 16th Assembly District, as described in Thursday’s Dake email. One Wisconsin Now is urging anyone who received the mailing to contact the organization at 608-204-0677. For more information about the alleged voter caging plot, visit http://www.savewisconsinsvote2010.org.

# # #

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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