Wisconsin conservatives support suspect tactics to fight Walker recall efforts

As the efforts to recall Republican Gov. Scott Walker get underway, I suppose it’s to be expected that some conservatives will feel compelled to attempt to undermine those efforts by any means necessary. Over on Facebook, I found one such example of a conservative (our old friend Mark “Notalib” Phillips, no less) offering some suggestions on how to void whole pages of recall petitions when recall petition circulators come knocking at your door.

Mark Phillips advocates underhanded tactics
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While Mark Phillips could easily be dismissed by some as a far-right extremist conservative, he’s not alone in advocating drastic measures to short-circuit the effort to recall Gov. Walker.

At a November 2 meeting on the campus of the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, Scott Coenen, the Chair of the UW-Whitewater College Republicans, suggested conservatives approached to sign recall petitions “tear the sheet up.”

Scott Coenen, College Republicans Chair: “That is a good point though. That is, that’s a great point. November 15th, Democratic Party and Democratic operatives are going to start collecting signatures, and this is a college campus. You’re going to get hit up with signatures. Don’t…don’t get in their face about it. I mean, they’re trying to do what they gotta do. Just respe…, you know, just tear the sheet up.” [Laughter]

Reached for comment about his statements, Scott Coenen admitting making the comment about tearing up recall petition sheets, but he asserted the comment was made as a joke.

“I urged my members in our meeting (I believe last week) to remain calm when asked to sign a petition and respectfully decline to sign it,” Coenen said, adding, “The reference to “tearing sheets up” was said in jest and I immediately made that clear and everyone in attendance recognized that reality. I would never, ever tell anyone to tear signature sheets up for any cause.”

Here’s the audio I received of Scott Coenen talking about tearing up recall petition sheets:

Whitewater College Republican Chair advocates tearing up recall petitions

Whether Coenen intended his comment to be a joke or not, I fail to understand why some conservatives think it’s hi-larious to joke about things like tearing up recall petition sheets and .


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20 thoughts on “Wisconsin conservatives support suspect tactics to fight Walker recall efforts

  1. The only thing that surprises me is that anyone is surprised. Frankly, if Mike Tate get’s caught like a deer in the headlights on yet another suite of Teapublican dirty tricks, someone needs to walk him to the door. We can’t go all “Aunt Pittypat” every time the TeaOP pull a dirty trick. They’ve been doing it for years and years! Wake up, Wisconsin! We need to be smarter than them. We need to cut off every avenue of escape for them. We must out-fox them each and every time. (I feel a blog post coming on)

    There’s simply no excuse to be surprised about it now.

    1. Betsy, given the news coming out of West Bend about someone being arrested for defacing recall petitions, I think it’s safe to say it wasn’t a joke.

  2. @Phil-
    My thought exactly. They’re not going to “play fair” and they’re not going down without a fight. If you think they were dirty before, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet.

  3. Isn’t is interesting/sad/pitiful that the right-wingers will stop at nothing to silence the people’s voices? They are so sure that the recall will succeed that they desperately resort to dirty tricks in their attempt to retain Fitzwalkerstan. These are the guys that have the Koch Brothers bankrolling them- hasn’t Citizens United given them enough power? This Facebook posting is a clear example of just how dispicable they are. No sense of integrity and then brazenly putting it out for the entire world to see. This in an outrage, they sicken me. And they claim voter fraud is a problem. This is a perfect example of voter fraud!

    1. You didn’t read the whole story, did you? It’s far more than a Facebook comment. Hey, and it’s a blog story, not a news story.

      Are you awake?

    2. John, I’m not a huge fan of turning Facebook posts into “news,” but I used the post in question because it shows a pattern of behavior in conjunction with the taped comments of the UW-Whitewater College Republicans Chair.

  4. Are there criminal penalties for deliberately destroying petitions? Circulators should know their rights and call the cops on the scofflaws.

    1. There are actually, $10,000 fines and 3 1/2 years in jail.

      I’m sort of amused at the fact it appeared on Mother Jones and they were all sort of doing an amazing flouncing around taking back everything, and calling them idiots, you’ll never find us, and so on.

      Too bad one of them actually were friends with their actual father. Awkward, to say the least.

    2. Also: Matt Wynns is actually Matt Lepperd a man who has a history of shading dealings in Milwaukee metropolitan area.

      I’d give a face to the man, but I think you could probably find a photo of him yourselves. These people are real, and are mostly in the Milwaukee Metropolitan area for the most part which I can’t say I’m too surprised. Even if there are some rowdy conservatives up here, I don’t think there’s any shifty activity, save for the idiot who ran against Dave Hansen.

  5. Intentionally falsifying, spoiling or destroying someone’s signature on nomination or recall papers is a felony. Nothing like talking about committing election related felonies for a good laugh.

    1. Mark,

      Wow, to think this is proof of anything is astounding. A video clip of a torn petition,
      ( torn by whom, we do not know),with the police unable to substantiate anything, and it all pops up on Glenn “Beetlejuice” Becks website.

      You’ll have to do better than that.

  6. Really? And what PROOF do you have? A couple of Facebook posts? Good grief. It is simply amazing (and shows the extreme double-standard) when you will take a 15-second video as your “proof” and yet when someone else DARES to post something to the contrary, you scoff at it.

    Quite frankly, I didn’t have TIME, nor the desire, to post all the videos, but I’m sure you could find some other videos, if you wanted to take the time.

    Ahh, but I get it…this was a PLANT in which someone DESTROYED the petitiion to make the unions look bad. So the goons in the background screaming at those collecting signatures…they were plants as well?

    1. Ahh, but I get it…this was a PLANT in which someone DESTROYED the petitiion to make the unions look bad. So the goons in the background screaming at those collecting signatures…they were plants as well?

      I can’t say I would be surprised if it was since it’s only voices in the background. After all it didn’t take too much for conservatives to pay for people out of state to recall Democrats. I haven’t been surprised since the Koch Phonecall with Walker where he said “We thought about that.”

      Sad. But true.

      I can’t say the same with the Democrats who didn’t have any payment of the sort. They mostly focused on signs, advertising, and not paying their volunteers. But then again – that I think is what the main difference was. The Democratic Canvassers were volunteers – the Republican Canvassers meanwhile may have seen it as a potential job.

      Not that I can exactly blame people who are paid to do this, everyone needs some money in this economy due to the destructive actions of neoliberalism finally showing it’s ugly head.

      Either way you seem a little upset.

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