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As I See It

Wisconsin AG who promotes government transparency not so good at it himself



It is bad enough that Wisconsin’s Attorney General spoke to an organization accused of being a hate group. What is worse is his efforts to cover it up. Attorney General Brad Schimel traveled to a California resort to be among the speakers at a convention of the group Alliance Defending Freedom, a Christian legal organization. That group has in the past supported the idea of criminalizing homosexuality, leading to calls that they are a hate group. Financial disclosure filings show Schimel’s $4100 trip was paid for by Alliance Defending Freedom. But apparently he didn’t want us to find out about it. He told his staffers his attendance at the conference was personal, not work-related, and that no portion of his travel should be considered public information. He insisted the agenda for his talks not be made public. That is troubling. As Wisconsin’s Attorney General, Schimel oversees state laws regarding transparency in government, and he has made improving government transparency a prominent part of his campaign. How can he effectively do that if he is trying to hide from the public the fact that he accepted a free trip to speak before what many consider a hate group? It appears that when it comes to government transparency in Wisconsin, the fox is guarding the hen house.

Scott Robert Shaw serves as WIZM Program Director and News Director, and delivers the morning news on WKTY, Z-93 and 95.7 The Rock. Scott has been at Mid-West Family La Crosse since 1989, and authors Wisconsin's only daily radio editorial, "As I See It" heard on WIZM each weekday morning and afternoon.

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