MADISON, Wis. — Gov. Scott Walker’s alibi for using a state airplane, at a cost to taxpayers of over $2,000, to travel to Northern Wisconsin on the day he filmed a campaign television ad in the area has been exposed as a lie, based on new evidence obtained by One Wisconsin Now. Walker has tried to justify his flight on July 17 to Rhinelander by claiming he had an official event at an area technical college that day. But, according to the school district where the ads were filmed and the technical college that hosted Walker, the ad shoot was scheduled well before the public event he’s using as an alibi.
“It is illegal to use state resources for a political campaign but that is exactly what Scott Walker did on July 17, 2018,” said One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross. “With this new evidence we’ve also exposed his lying and scheming to avoid his obligation to pay the state back for his improper use of the state plane.”
In response to an open records request from One Wisconsin Now, Nicolet Technical college provided an email in which a staff member wrote, on July 11, they were “… contacted by the governor’s office today about the possibility of Gov. Walker visiting Nicolet next Tuesday, July 17th from 10:15 – 11:15 am. He will be in the Rhinelander area for another scheduled event …”
That previously scheduled event was filming tv ads for his campaign. The Three Lakes School District had previously confirmed that Walker’s team was on school property filming an ad on July 17. They also replied to follow up inquiries by One Wisconsin Now that Gov. Walker’s representatives reached out to the district to schedule the campaign ad shoot the third week of June, well before they scheduled a public event.
The newly obtained evidence directly contradicts Walker’s story, showing the public event was scheduled after the campaign activity and was used as an alibi to use the state plane at taxpayer expense, in violation of the law. See the timeline here.
Ross concluded, “Gov. Walker violated state law that prohibits using public resources for campaigns and he ought to held accountable for it. He owes Wisconsin taxpayers a check for $2,017.66 for using a state plane on their dime to fly to Rhinelander to film a tv ad for his campaign, and he owes everyone an apology for scheming to evade the law and for lying about it.”