Friday, September 11, 2009

Kapanke should pay for his violations, not taxpayers

Today State Senator Dan Kapanke (R-La Crosse) acknowledged that he violated state Public Records laws. The admission was made in court filings released today in Dane County Circuit Court. The open records complaint was filed against Senator Kapanke after he and his office delayed, concealed and even destroyed some of the requested records. The records involved his office's questionable use of his state staff and resources for two campaign related events.

The lawsuit calls for the state to pay $100 in damages and $38,000 in attorney's fees. Since Kapanke has admitted wrong doing shouldn't that come out of his own pocket? Why should the public have to pay? Especially given the tough economic times that we are in as a nation and as a state, the last thing that public dollars should pay for is Kapanke's incompetence and violations of important laws. The simple fact is that Kapanke has now admitted to the wrong doing involving the open records lawsuit and now he should have to pay for it.

UPDATE: See the actual court documents at Milwaukee World.

Also take a look at the good points being raised at Blogging Blue .


Anonymous said...

Kapanke is against campaign finance reform because taxpayers shouldn't have to pay for his campaign (leave that to special interests). Following that logic, taxpayers shouldn't have to pay for his violating the law. Maybe we can get WMAC to cough up the dough

Cory Liebmann said...

great point...i was thinking about how the GOP is always complaining about spending taxpayer's money for various programs and services (even when they are vital) are they really going to complain about that important stuff but find no fault at all in paying the Kapanke generated legal bills?

Silent E said...

Is Doyle going to pay for the 80,000+ dollar payed out to newspaper for refusing to release docs?????

Cory Liebmann said...

They are not the same things...the gov fully complied with the newspaper request but the newspaper didn't like the timing of it and sued. This was just a timing issue at its core.

The Kapanke issue is much more serious. He first denied the request and then the matter went on to involve the concealment and destruction of public records. That later could be considered criminal and that is why there is a pending investigation with the La Crosse DA right now.

The two issues are not even close to being the same. but nice try though.

Michael Horne said...

I'm still troubled that Kapanke has given no account of the finances of his forum and that he did not report the money on his campaign finance statement. I sure hope the GAB is investigating that.

The Dems really got him in a box with this one. This was one heck of a caper.

Cory Liebmann said...

Michael: i am also troubled by that point and i equally hope that gab is looking into it.

btw, thanks for your great reporting on this issue.