Saturday, March 17, 2007

Mark Green: Sore Loser

The saga of the dirty money that Mark Green tried to sneak in from his federal coffers has ended with another sound Green defeat. On Friday, Green and the Elections Board reached a “settlement” of their “dispute” over $467,844 that Green illegally transferred from his federal account and tried to use in his state campaign. Green and his henchmen have apparently decided that they have soaked as much wing-nut talking-points as they could from their phony appeal and, like the brave men they are, turned tail and ran.

I don't want to say "I told you so"...No, I do. From my October 26th post:

“The fact is that Green campaign has known from the beginning that the $460,000 was gone. They have been playing for time for months: 1) pretending that it was somehow arguable that he should be able to use the money, 2) claiming that Doyle "rigged" the Elections Board vote, 3) lost the request of a restraining order from a Dane County judge (who certainly would have granted it if the Board was "rigged"), 4) voluntarily dismissed their own case, and 5) appealed their own voluntary dismissal to the Supreme Court. About the "appeal", Green tells the Journal Sentinel ‘I have no idea what's going on…’”

In other words, despite all their huffing-and-puffing about the “injustice” of it all, the Greenies knew they were legally wrong, but continued to churn the issue, filing frivolous appeals with no intention of ever having the Supreme Court hear the issue, and, in the meantime, using the “issue” as another one of their phony “dirty Doyle” smears. As it turns out, the Elections Board got it right, and, regardless of how he spins it, by accepting the “settlement” with the Board this past Friday, Green admits as much.

Saying that they had “agreed to disagree about the law”, the Elections Board said in a statement: “The settlement prohibits Green from using the disputed funds to run for office, but allows him to pay legal fees and make contributions to other candidates for office.” So, he can’t use the dirty money in any future campaign (one shudders to think of him running for anything again) and he gets to use the money to pay the legal bills he rang up by filing the phony appeals in the first place. As for giving to other campaigns, it appears the dirty money would then be that candidate’s problem. Don’t expect Green’s phone to be ringing off the hook by candidates seeking to have Green dump his dirty money problems on them.

This is exactly the result that would have occurred if the Elections Board would have prevailed in the Supreme Court (except, maybe, the payment of those all-important attorney fees). You would think, then, that Green might be humbled by such an event and, perhaps, even apologize for wasting everyone’s time. You would be wrong. A class act all the way, Loser Green issued a statement: “The decision by the Elections Board last fall has now been exposed as nothing more than a crass manipulation of a governmental agency by Jim Doyle in his desperate effort to hold on to power…I am gratified that the Elections Board itself has been eliminated. No other candidate will ever again receive the kind of unfair treatment I received from what was supposed to be an impartial body.”

Good grief. If the decision of the Board was the result of such a “crass manipulation”, why would Green accept a settlement that gave him nothing? What kind of “unfair treatment” can there be if the Board got it right? You would think by this desperate spin that Green won not only the case, but the election. He lost both, of course, and deservedly so. And he continues to whine about it.

Green is lucky he has now-confirmed Bush hack Steve Biskupic in the U.S. Attorney’s office. If Green had pulled this stunt as a Democrat, he would surely be prosecuted by GOP operative Biskupic for transferring the money out of his federal account the way he did in the first place -- after all, the Elections Board was interpreting federal law when they made their correct ruling.

As for the Journal Sentinel, which has provided several opportunities for Green to whine about his election thumping and the sad unavailability of his dirty money, it ran the Green defeat-by-settlement story in the second section this Saturday morning. This is after the blazing “Green to Appeal” headline across the front page when the Elections Board first made its ruling before the election. Even six months after the election, bad-for-Green stories get buried and the lies get a head start before the truth gets its boots on. In all this time, the J-S has never called out Green’s dirty money transfer as the blatant violation of the law it was. Maybe now they can editorialize about how the Elections Board bravely protected the election process from the dirty money Green tried to drag in here from Washington.

I won’t hold my breath.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The J-S has been attacking the Elections Board from the start, along with the 'do-good-government' groups so they can appear that they accomplished something when the SB1 was passed; well don't they just feel important.

This new board, the GAB, will be utterly overworked (they are suppose to handle everything from running the elections, campaign finance to lobbist donations, and government corruption).

Can you say bureaucratic mess?