ICYMI: Unethical Attempt by Elected Republicans to Intervene in Voter Suppression Lawsuit Funded by RNC

Jun 27, 2012

As the unethical behavior by Republican legislators trying to derail a lawsuit over the suppressive Voter ID law unravels, new information shows the legal costs for lawyers in the matter have been bankrolled by the Republican National Committee.

As reported by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, when Rep. Robin Vos, Rep. Bob Ziegelbauer and others filed a motion to intervene in a lawsuit attacking the voter ID law as unconstitutional, the elected officials refused to say who was paying the legal bills for lawyers who had worked on the intervention.

Soon after their refusal to disclose that information came to light, the Government Accountability Board warned Vos and Ziegelbauer that they cannot legally — or ethically — accept free gifts, such as the payment for legal costs. Vos and Ziegelbauer promptly took their names off of the case.

And now, it has been revealed that none other than the Republican National Committee was paying for the unethical intervention. [1]

As the newspaper reports, “Vos said he deliberately did not ask who was funding the effort to minimize any allegations that he was doing the bidding of outside interests.”

“It raised grave concerns when Rep. Robin Vos and Rep. Bob Ziegelbauer refused to answer who was paying the intervention’s legal costs, especially as they later claimed their lack of knowledge about who was funding the case was deliberate and somehow meant to keep them honest,” said Democratic Party of Wisconsin Chair Mike Tate on Thursday. “Everything surrounding the Republicans attempts to push this Voter ID law through and change the rules in the middle of the game by suppressing voters is anything but above-board and the latest revelation is just more evidence of that. Sadly, this pattern is nothing new — we’ve come to expect this kind of unethical behavior and voter disenfranchisement by Republicans as the norm.”

[1] – RNC Funded Lawmakers’ Request to Intervene in Voter ID Case (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, June 26, 2012)