In response to attacks against him by Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke (and happily promoted by right-wing squawk radio) Democrat Chris Moews responded earlier today with this open letter to Milwaukee’s right-wing talk radio PR machine.
An Open Letter to Milwaukee Talk Radio
Dear Talk Radio Hosts Mark Belling, Jay Weber, Charlie Sykes and Jeff Wagner:
You should know better than to rely on David Clarke to explain my position on anything, let alone something complex.
His press release, if you can decipher it, suggests I don’t want to deport criminals. Nothing could be further from the truth. Could it be that David Clarke, desperate not to lose his horse, is intentionally misrepresenting my position?
Let’s be clear, I have the same position as the Milwaukee Police Department on immigration. First of all, if someone commits a crime, whether violent or not, from assault to murder, from burglary to car theft, we should do everything we can to hold them accountable. If someone is undocumented and commits a crime, after they serve their sentence in Wisconsin, they should be deported.
However, I don’t think we should be doing the federal government’s job for them, especially under this broken immigration system. It has a real impact on solving crimes and helping victims if undocumented persons refuse to cooperate with police because they think we’re just an extension of ICE. When it comes to witnesses and victims, I don’t think we should be worrying about their immigration status unless it has a direct bearing on the case. For example, an undocumented person on the street shouldn’t worry about cooperating if they witness a mugging. We want victims of robberies and domestic abuse to speak up to stop offenders. Witnesses and victims should feel able to help police, and not worry that local cops are doing the job of federal agents.
For too long we have had a sheriff that has neglected his duty of focusing on public safety and getting violent criminals off the street. Sheriff Clarke has failed to properly manage his department in order to have an impact on crime. He lost control of the House of Correction. He cut witness protection, and John Chisholm had to take it over. He cut the drug unit, and he cut the gun unit. He complains he doesn’t have enough resources, but the problem is that he doesn’t manage them very well. And he refuses to back universal background checks to keep guns out of the hands of criminals, despite the broad support of law enforcement, the public, even NRA members, putting politics before public safety.
The daily distractions and dishonesty coming out of the Sheriff’s Office are not only a disgrace to the position he holds, but do no good for the taxpayers. As sheriff, I will always make public safety a priority and focus on creating a better law enforcement network across Milwaukee County.
I realize that’s a more complex position than David Clarke usually has on anything, but if you guys have a shred of integrity, you’d at least accurately portray my position instead of the lies you’ve been peddling on the air recently.
During a recent appearance on UpFront, Democratic Milwaukee County Sheriff candidate Chris Moews explained why he believes Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke is a sideshow who lack competency when it comes to law enforcement in Milwaukee County.
Earlier this week, Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke’s reelection campaign sent out a mailer touting Clarke’s law enforcement credentials, and as James Rowen of The Political Environment noted, it’s a very curious mailer.
Sheriff Clarke’s efforts to tout his crime fighting credentials are laughable, especially considering how little the Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Office has done under Sheriff David Clarke to fight crime in Milwaukee County. After all, who can forget this statistic:
Crimes reported in Milwaukee County in 2009-2010: 106,936
Crimes reported by the Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Office in 2009: 19
And how can anyone forget how Sheriff David Clarke once tried to help a drunk driver with a suspended license get back on the road after said drunk driver had driven off the road. Thankfully, one of Sheriff Clarke’s deputies was able to properly assess the situation and take appropriate action, despite Sheriff Clarke’s incompetence.
While Sheriff David Clarke talks tough about fighting crime in Milwaukee County, the reality is he’s a lawman on paper only. If Milwaukee County’s residents want a Sheriff who will really fight crime, they should vote for Lieutenant Chris Moews.
Shortly after news broke that Sheriff David Clarke’s office had racked up nearly $12 million in overtime costs in 2011 and 2012, Lt. Chris Moews, a a candidate for Milwaukee County Sheriff in the 2014 election, issued a press release criticizing the mismanagement that led to the exorbitant overtime costs.
Here’s the gist of Moews’ press release.
“The news today of Sheriff Clarke’s excessive overtime expense – $12 million over the past two years and $5.8 million over budget – is a prime example of his poor leadership.
“While Sheriff Clarke has been grandstanding, posing for magazine covers, and playing politics in the Sheriff’s office, our taxpayer dollars have been squandered. This is yet another example of David Clarke’s mismanagement and misplaced priorities.
“As law enforcement officers, our first responsibility is to keep the community safe. But as leaders and managers, we have to be smart stewards of the taxpayers’ money. It’s clear that when Sheriff Clarke spends his time on political grandstanding instead of keeping his focus on the job at hand, bad things happen.”
“Milwaukee County residents are tired of seeing bad news every few days out of the Sheriff’s office. Milwaukee needs a new Sheriff that will restore responsible, honest, and adult leadership to the office. Our residents want someone who will prioritize safety and good governance rather than petty political battles and tea-party talk shows.
“Safer communities and fiscal responsibility are achievable in Milwaukee County, but only if our Sheriff is committed to those values. Sheriff Clarke’s actions have demonstrated that he does not share those values.
“I will work with community groups all across Milwaukee County to restore the integrity and leadership that has been lacking in the Sheriff’s office during his tenure.”
Join us to support Chris Moews for Milwaukee County Sheriff, May 16, 2013 from 5:00-7:00pm
Brocach’s Irish Pub
1850 N Water Street
Sponsor – $500, Patrons – $250, Friends – $100
Contributions in any amount will be gratefully accepted!
Contribute online (https://secure.actblue.com/entity/fundraisers/33123?ref=chrismoews_contribute) or mail checks to:
Friends of Chris Moews, 5027 W. North Avenue, Milwaukee WI 53208
To become a sponsor, please contact Jason at firstname.lastname@example.org or (414) 344-1733.
Chris Moews is running to bring back adult leadership and smart management to the Milwaukee County Sheriff’s office. He is a committed and experienced law enforcement leader who will put safety before politics.
Paid for by Friends of Chris Moews, Vickie Strachota, Treasurer
On Wednesday Lt. Chris Moews, a candidate for Milwaukee County Sheriff in the 2014 election, issued a press release criticizing Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke’s response to the Boston bomb attack this week.
“As a law enforcement officer and a detective who works every day to both solve and prevent crime on Milwaukee’s streets, I was appalled to see Sheriff Clarke’s premature statement yesterday, just 24 hours after the horrific bombing in Boston, referring to that crime as an ‘intelligence failure,’” said Lt. Chris Moews. “How could he possibly know that? This is a time to let the FBI, Boston PD, the ATF and the other agencies involved do their job to bring the perpetrator or perpetrators to justice, and focus on caring for the victims and preventing another attack.
“Those law enforcement officers are already seeing a real, evidence-based strategy bear fruit,” said Lt. Moews. “Real law enforcement leaders don’t make inflammatory remarks about an event like this without having all the information — we wait for some real data, and some real evidence.
“If there was an intelligence failure, we’ll find out, and we’ll respond, as a united nation against violent crime and terror,” continued Lt. Moews. “But as we don’t have a full idea what happened, to call it a ‘catastrophic intelligence failure’ on the first day of the investigation is just another example of why most law enforcement professionals are concerned about Clarke’s ability to lead the Sheriff’s department.”
Moews, a life-long resident of Milwaukee County and a Lieutenant in the Milwaukee Police Department, challenged Sheriff Clarke in the Democratic Primary in 2010 and will run again in 2014.
On Friday, Milwaukee County Sheriff (and general laughingstock) David Clarke released a new public service announcement advocating for residents of Milwaukee County to arm themselves because 9-1-1 is no longer their best option. Here’s the PSA:
I’m Sheriff David Clarke, and I want to talk to you about something personal…your safety. It’s no longer a spectator sport; I need you in the game, but are you ready? With officers laid-off and furloughed, simply calling 9-1-1 and waiting is no longer your best option. You can beg for mercy from a violent criminal, hide under the bed, or you can fight back; but are you prepared? Consider taking a certified safety course in handling a firearm so you can defend yourself until we get there. You have a duty to protect yourself and your family. We’re partners now. Can I count on you?
In response to Clarke’s PSA, Chris Moews, who challenged Sheriff David Clarke in the 2010 Democratic primary for Milwaukee County Sheriff and is currently preparing to run again in 2014, issued a statement criticizing Clarke’s call for citizen vigilantism.
“Despite the way our Sheriff carries himself, Milwaukee County is not the Wild West and telling citizens to arm themselves is not an appropriate public safety strategy,” said Moews. “The only law enforcement official who would ever recommend this as a crime-fighting policy is one who has failed to do his own job.”
Moews also noted the rift between Sheriff Clarke and County Executive Chris Abele regarding the Sheriff Department’s budget.
“A real leader is someone who has temperament,” said Moews. “The Sheriff should not be using the public airwaves with taxpayer money to complain about the budget he was given. He needs to find better ways to manage his department, not use theatrics that instill fear in our neighbors. A real Sheriff would lead a collaborative effort with the community to develop substantive solutions, not encourage vigilantism.”
What I find curious is Clarke’s statement urging citizens to arm themselves so they can defend themselves until “we” get there. Surely the “we” Clarke is referencing can’t be the Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Office, because the last time I checked the Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Office under David Clarke wasn’t the first line of defense for Milwaukee County citizens who need law enforcement assistance.
In other news, Democratic State Sen. Tim Carpenter announced he’ll be a candidate for City of Milwaukee Treasurer. Carpenter will be running to replace Wayne Whittow, who has already announced he won’t seek reelection to his office. As an interesting sidenote, Carpenter will not have to give up his seat in the State Senate unless he’s elected as City Treasurer, thanks to the fact that he’s in the middle of his term as a State Senator.
And finally…Chris Moews, who unsuccessfully challenged Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke in the Democratic primary for Sheriff in 2010, is laying the groundwork for another run against Clarke. According to an email sent out by Moews to supporters, he’ll be holding a campaign fundraiser at Brocach Irish Pub on October 11 from 5-7 p.m. to begin building his campaign and preparing for his next run against Sheriff Clarke.
Just a few predictions on some important races today, keeping in mind that this list is far from exhaustive:
Chris Larson v. Jeff Plale (Democratic primary in 7th State Senate District): A lot of money has been spent in this race, including scads of money from outside groups on both sides, and the race has gotten really nasty in a personal way. I’m predicting a Larson win over Sen. Plale, by a margin of 52% to 48%.
Scott Walker v. Mark Neumann (Republican gubernatorial primary): This is the race to watch in the state of Wisconsin. Scott Walker’s entire gubernatorial campaign has been run with the assumption he’s the frontrunner and would win easily today, but the fact that he’s gone negative in recent weeks seems to signal a shift in the race. I’m going to go out on a big limb and predict Walker loses today, with Mark Neumann winning by a margin of 51% to 49%.
Dave Westlake v. Ron Johnson (Republican U.S. Senate primary): Everywhere I go, I see Scott Walker and Ron Johnson yard signs in tandem. Obviously yard signs don’t vote, but the point I’m getting at is that it certainly seems to me that the better Mark Neumann does, the better Dave Westlake will do, since the two seem to share some common supporters. However, while I like Dave Westlake and I’d like to see him win the Republican U.S. Senate primary, I’m calling this race for Ron Johnson, by a margin of 58% to 42%. (However, I will say that if Westlake does by some miracle win today, I’ll don a blaze orange “I Am Dave Westlake” t-shirt for a full 24 hours)
Chris Moews v. David Clarke (Democratic Milwaukee County Sheriff primary): Without the crossover conservative voters who’ve helped conservative Clarke win election after election, I’m predicting Chris Moews wins today, by a margin of 54% to 46%.
Obviously I’m no expert political pundit, so I fully expect these predictions will be wildly inaccurate.