MADISON, Wis. — After dodging questions from the press on the eve of the first Republican presidential primary debate, today Republican Gov. Scott Walker told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel he did not know he was the target of a long-running John Doe criminal investigation, convened in 2010, until August 5, 2015.
In 2012, Walker vociferously denied he was targeted in the probe by prosecutors, claiming any suggestion he was under suspicion for wrongdoing was a “liberal scare tactic.”
The following are the statements of One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross:
“This guy spent nearly one million dollars on legal fees in a John Doe criminal investigation convened in 2010, and claimed with a straight face that he had no idea he was a target of the investigation until a month after declaring his run for President of the United States.
“There is no universe which exists where an ambitious career politician like Scott Walker wouldn’t have his high priced criminal defense lawyers find out if he was under criminal investigation.
“For Walker to now ask that we believe his outlandish claim shows his utter contempt for the intelligence of the people of the United States of America.
“The verdict is in, and it’s clear Scott Walker has no clue.”
Ross added the overwhelming preponderance of evidence undermines the veracity of Gov. Walker’s claim of ignorance. Among the facts in contradiction to Walker’s claim are:
- Walker formed a criminal legal defense fund that took in at least $450,000 from as-yet-unknown donors and paid hundreds of thousands more to an attorney on retainer through his campaign;
- Walker’s criminal legal defense team included Chicago-based criminal defense attorneys and a former United States Attorney;
- Walker’s Milwaukee County Executive Suite was searched by investigators in late 2010;
- Email released under court order reveals Walker personally participating in the scheme being scrutinized by prosecutors as illegal;
- Walker’s longtime campaign treasurer, and also target in the investigation of misconduct in public office, suddenly resigned his position in 2011;
- Another party involved in the alleged misconduct was detained and jailed for a brief time during the course of the investigation;
- Walker personally met with prosecutors, something his high-priced, experienced defense team would never have allowed without a clear understanding of Walker’s status as a target of the investigation.
More information about Walker’s six aides and associates charged in the John Doe criminal investigation can be found here on the Scott Walker Files site.