MADISON, Wis. — While Scott Walker gubernatorial candidate was calling for “transparency in the state contracting process,” Scott Walker Milwaukee County Executive and top aides were secretly funneling confidential information to a political crony to try to help him win a lucrative deal with the county. One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross blasted Walker’s actions as a “stunning display of hypocrisy, even for Scott Walker.” Ross also renewed his call for the resignations of other scheme participants Cindy Archer and Jim Villa from their six-figure salary state jobs.
“There’s been no shortage of hypocrisy in the twenty plus year career of professional politician Scott Walker,” commented Ross. “But running for office on a platform of transparency in contracting while at the same time working surreptitiously to manipulate a contract for the benefit of a political crony is at the top of the list. And to top it off, key players in this blatant violation of the public trust remain ensconced in six-figure state jobs.”
During his 2010 run for governor Scott Walker’s website included a “Government Spending and Reform” page on which he issued a call to, “Restore Wisconsin’s reputation for clean and honest government through transparency in the state contracting process.”
Earlier, during his abortive 2006 run for governor, Walker issued a press release attempting to insert himself into a controversy over the award of a state travel contract. Walker wrote, “Governor Doyle needs to purge his administration of individuals who place politics and special interests ahead of the people of Wisconsin.”
Meanwhile, based on documents recently released under court order, Walker as County Executive was exposed as working closely with his longtime campaign treasurer John Hiller to manipulate a Milwaukee County contract to benefit his crony’s real estate interests. A report in the Wisconsin State Journal quotes a nationally recognized expert in public procurement processes characterizing the actions of Walker and his team secretly providing inside information to Hiller as, “highly unethical, at minimum.”
Among the others involved in the scheme were Walker’s Milwaukee County Administrative Services Director and current Chief Information Officer for the state Public Defender, Cindy Archer and Jim Villa, a longtime Walker political confidant and consultant, former chief of staff and lobbyist, now Vice President of Government Relations for the University of Wisconsin System.
A third conspirator in the county bid scheme, former Walker top aide Tim Russell, was convicted and jailed on charges of embezzling funds from an organization to help the widows and children of armed forces members killed in the line of duty.
Ross first demanded on Wednesday that Archer and Villa resign from their current six-figure salary state jobs or be removed from them by Gov. Walker.
He concluded, “Gov. Walker’s abominable ethics are only outpaced only by his rank hypocrisy. It is clear that time and again he will say anything to get elected and do anything, including looting the public treasury, to help his cronies once in office. Gov. Walker by his actions has shown that he cannot be trusted to keep his word and will not live up to the standards he sets for others.”