The leader of an investigation into Wisconsin’s 2020 elections praised a Republican gubernatorial contender Sunday and asked a Republican Party crowd to continue supporting his investigation.
“I know, Rebecca, you are going to be a fantastic governor,” former state Supreme Court Justice Michael Gableman said, referring to Republican gubernatorial candidate Rebecca Kleefisch, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported
Gableman added: “She’s tough as nails too. You’re going to be fantastic.”
Kleefisch is Wisconsin’s former lieutenant governor, serving with former Gov. Scott Walker (R) from 2011 to 2019. She’s also the plaintiff in a lawsuit filed last month against the Wisconsin Election Commission.
The commission administers elections and enforces election law, and was, ironically, created in legislation passed by Wisconsin’s Republican-controlled legislature and signed into law by Walker in 2015. But this year, Republicans have targeted the body because of pandemic-related changes made in 2020 that they assert violate the law.
In a statement accompanying her suit, Kleefisch called commission members “unelected bureaucrats intentionally ignoring the law.” Wisconsin Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R), who authorized Gableman’s investigation, said recently that the majority of the election commission should “probably” be charged with felonies.
Gableman, who was hired by Vos over the summer to probe the last election, has made little attempt to hide his partisan leanings. One of the investigators on his taxpayer-funded team, for example, is a county GOP chair who filed multiple lawsuits to overturn the 2020 election results.
Gableman has sought records from clerks and mayors, but he acknowledged in October that “most people, myself included, do not have a comprehensive understanding or even any understanding of how elections work.” Still, he has broadcast his own beliefs with trips to the sham “audit” of Maricopa County, Arizona’s 2020 elections, as well as to MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell’s flop “Cyber Symposium.”
Vos said Tuesday that Gableman’s investigation will run past its contractual Dec. 31 end date. He blamed Democrats, even as Gableman has threatened to jail the mayors of Madison and Green Bay for their purported non-cooperation with his probe.
“Never in my wildest dreams would I have imagined how far liberals and Democrats would go to try to hide the truth,” Vos said.
Gableman on Sunday pressed those in attendance at the Rock County Republican Party event to continue supporting his work, the Journal Sentinel reported.
“We can’t let it go,” he said. “They come for us in tiny, tiny steps. They come for us in millimeters. And if you give a millimeter, they’re going to push and you’ve got to back up more. You back up, they’re going to push you again and you’ve got to back up more. I am done backing up. And I hope you are, too.”
He also announced his support of Republican attorney general contender Eric Toney, saying “I know which candidate I’m going to vote for.”
“I look at Eric Toney’s literature and I see right on the front page his goal to reform and defend election law,” Gableman said.
The legislature’s top election investigator scheduled to speak at another Republican Party event next week, the paper noted.