Silent Majority Speaks Up
February 1, 2012
After hearing from citizens who want the Government Accountability Board (GAB) to make Walker recall petitions available online for public inspection, the agency rejected the ACLU’s request to redact address information from all petitions to protect the identity of one woman who said she was being stalked.
It would have been impossible for the GAB to find and redact this woman’s information as the petitions are not currently available in a searchable database format. Redacting all address information would make it impossible for groups and individuals to find fraudulent entries among the more than one million petitions filed.
Fred Young of Racine was among the silent majority who spoke up and who called out the GAB:
Your announcement of refusal to allow citizen groups to check the authenticity of the Walker recall petitions is unacceptable. Your stated reason for withholding the petitions is a fig leaf. Recall fraud prevention and citizens’ right to access of public records trump stalker victim fear.
You post my partisan political contributions on-line for the world to see. Nomination papers are public. Partisan recall petitions should be posted as well.
You posted the petitions for the nine recalls last year. You posted the petitions for Lt. Gov. and four state Senators this month.
To withhold a million signatures to honor the request of one stalked person and a few who just don’t want their name published is to ignore entrenched precedent as well as to violate citizens’ right of access to public records. If a person doesn’t want their name seen, they shouldn’t make campaign contributions, sign nomination papers or support recall petitions.
Going forward, what will prevent massive fraud in future recalls if recallers know the GAB doesn’t check for fraud and will prevent citizen groups from checking for fraud. Katie bar the door!
I don’t want to be disrespectful, but the Saul Alinsky “whatever it takes” behavior in Madison makes me angry.