Former Supreme Court Justice Michael Gableman in a video promoting the partisan review of the 2020 election. (YouTube | Office of the Special Counsel)
The Democratic members of the Assembly Committee on Campaigns and Elections said on Monday that they would be refusing to meet privately with former Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Michael Gableman, who is conducting a widely criticized review of the 2020 election.
Gableman, after a heated appearance before the committee last week, attempted to meet privately with the Democratic members, which they said they refused because they believe his work should be done in public.
“After refusing to answer questions or provide information in public, Mike Gableman is seeking private meetings with Democratic members of the Committee on Campaigns and Elections,” a joint statement from Reps. Mark Spreitzer (D-Beloit), Lisa Subeck (D-Madison) and Jodi Emerson (D-Eau Claire) declared. “We will not be a part of Mike Gableman’s attempts to hide from public scrutiny. Mike Gableman had a chance to answer questions in public, but he chose not to. We see no reason to meet with him in private.”
Gableman’s review was originally supposed to be wrapped up by the end of October but Assembly Speaker Robin Vos said last month it could go into next year. Members of Gableman’s staff have also been kept secret, with the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reporting last month that a lawyer working for Gableman could only be identified as “Carol.” When he began his review, Gableman sent requests for documents to elections clerks across the state from an anonymous Gmail account with the name “John Delta.”
The Democrats on the committee said Vos should end Gableman’s “sham review” and criticized the conclusions Gableman has already made.
“Last week, Mike Gableman appeared before the Assembly Committee on Campaigns and Elections and attempted to bluster and grandstand through an entire public meeting about his investigation rather than give Committee members and the public the information they deserve,” the Democrats said. “His office is funded with public tax dollars, but he has routinely refused to be up front and honest with the public about how he is spending those taxpayer funds.”
“During his hour and a half with the Committee, Gableman repeatedly rejected the idea of providing basic information like the names of the people who work for him and what their credentials are,” they continued. “Gableman flatly refused to commit to conducting his investigation in public hearings in front of the Committee on Campaigns and Elections. Gableman’s interim report provided no new information, instead simply rehashing cherry-picked information from other entities and providing Gableman’s own biased commentary.”
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