Rep. Pridemore Violates Ethics Rules, Uses State Office to Launch Political Campaign Attack

Mar 18, 2009

Pridemore Must Acknowledge Violations, or Immediately Step Down
from Committee on Elections and Campaign Reform

MADISON – Republican State Rep. Don Pridemore (R-Hartford) today violated state ethics rules by using his taxpayer-funded office to launch a blatant campaign attack against DPI candidate Tony Evers, calling him, “a bad choice to lead Wisconsin’s Department of Public Instruction.”

Pridemore serves on the State Assembly’s Committee on Elections and Campaign Reform.

“Apparently, Don Pridemore’s idea of ‘reform’ includes a complete disregard for state ethics rules – using his taxpayer-funded office to launch 100 percent political campaign attacks,” said Jason Stephany, Executive Director of the Democratic Party of Wisconsin. “Pridemore must either acknowledge this violation and apologize to his constituents or immediately step down from the Committee on Elections and Campaign Reform.”

Pridemore’s campaign press release was sent from his state office account, by state staff, on state letterhead, and listed his toll-free number to the state capitol – all blatant violations of ethics rules. (Source: Pridemore release, 3.19.09, http://www.wispolitics.com/index.iml?Article=152710)

At one point in his release, Pridemore reaches the peak of hypocrisy when he rails against WEAC for allegedly using taxpayer dollars to oppose candidates they don’t agree with.

“The DPW will file an official complaint with the state Government Accountability Board if Rep. Pridemore does not immediately apologize for breaking ethics rules and treating his state office like his own personal campaign headquarters,” said Stephany.