Organized labor is hatching a plan to use prominent Democratic officials and TV ads to pummel Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker over the O’Donnell Park garage accident to try to keep him from being elected governor.
So says a local union official with loose lips who was secretly recorded yakking away outside an east side bar earlier this month.
But this story isn’t really about an undercover tape, so please read on, as the plot thickens:
Here’s what he said everyone can expect in the next six weeks:
TV spots will hit Walker for neglecting county facilities; supervisors will continue to call for an independent investigation of O’Donnell Park; Walker’s opponent, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, will push legislation on the subject; and Gov. Jim Doyle’s administration may let state engineers come in to inspect the county facility.
“I’m kind of at the center of a maelstrom right now in terms of kicking Scott Walker’s (expletive),” said John-david Morgan, a lobbyist and spokesman for the Service Employees International Local 1, on Sept. 10 outside the Y-Not II tavern on E. Lyon St. “I’ve been kicking Scott Walker’s (expletive) for two months now. We’ve been on TV; we’ve done all kinds of stuff.”
Using his cell phone, a Walker campaign staffer recorded a 15-minute talk in which Morgan laid out what he said were his union’s plans to tie the problems at the O’Donnell Park garage and the Milwaukee County Mental Health Complex to the Republican nominee.
Getting more interesting, isn’t it? The SEIU — that’s the Service Employees International Union — is once again at the heart of Democrat skulduggery, if not (this time) outright thuggery. The union that represents a sizable group of people whose salaries are paid by the American taxpayer, and thus should be non-partisan, is openly going to war against one political party, the Republicans.
Note how the union — which ostensibly represents working-class and public employees — openly colludes with the Democrats in order to further its political ambitions and purposes, and uses a tragedy to do so.
According to a copy of the recording obtained by No Quarter, Morgan explained how he has been working with County Board members – in particular, Supervisor John Weishan – to call for an independent investigation into what caused a 13-ton concrete panel to fall from the O’Donnell parking ramp and kill a 15-year-old Greenfield boy in late June.
A resolution requesting an independent probe was introduced by Weishan and other supervisors in July. Morgan told the Walker campaign staffer that another news conference will soon be held on the subject.
“I’ve got county supervisors to do this stuff so, you know, it’s not just the labor union,” Morgan said.
And now for the cherry on top:
The union staffer bragged about his ability to garner news coverage of his anti-Walker events from local TV stations, which he called “willing partners” in his endeavors. He also disclosed that he secretly runs an anti-Walker blog at www.scottwalkertruthsquad.org, which prominently features Weishan and SEIU’s criticisms of the county exec.
There you have it, ladies and gentlemen, the perfect storm, writ small on the local level, of what currently ails the country. It’s like watching a fixed fight, one that everybody knows is fixed except the rubes — in this case, the Republicans and those gullible members of the public who still think the “media” are impartial reporters of fact.
Recent engineering reports found that nearly all of O’Donnell Park garage’s 70 decorative concrete panels were installed improperly and connections for more than one-third of them are in danger of failing. Walker and the County Board are now weighing whether to remove the panels, sell the structure or demolish it altogether.
As for the Mental Health Complex, the Journal Sentinel has documented a pattern of neglect and mismanagement – to the point that one patient with a history of violence was allowed to roam free. That patient is facing charges of sexually assaulting a female patient and is believed to be the father of a boy born to another patient, who told complex officials the man had assaulted her.
These subjects, Morgan said, will be hit hard in upcoming TV commercials.
“They’re going to say Scott Walker’s a, you know, a disaster,” Morgan told Brickman. “Scott Walker, his name is synonymous with neglect. . . . He’s anti-public services. He shouldn’t even be running. That’s what they’re going to say.”
That’s not to mention all the free media that Morgan has gotten from TV news coverage of his union’s rallies and activities.
Morgan specifically mentioned WTMJ-TV (Channel 4) for its coverage of the union’s press-friendly inspection of county facilities last month. Like the Journal Sentinel, the station is owned by Journal Communications.
“They’ve really been willing partners in it,” Morgan claimed of the news stations. “They come in with the TV cameras, and (channels) 58, 12 come, and 6 doesn’t always. But, yeah, they’ve been really helpful. They think it’s fun.”
Sure, it’s just Milwaukee. But what happens in Milwaukee, out of the national spotlight, very much matters. It matters because local media is where reporters get their starts, where they supposedly hone their skills until luck or talent or looks some combination thereof lets them break into The Show.
They think it’s fun.
Tells you all you need to know about the state of the MSM today. The children — the local news reporters — are father to the men and women whom you see each night on national television, and whose work you read in the Washington Post and the New York Times.
They think it’s fun.
Watch, and read, accordingly.