New details are emerging about a potential corruption investigation into Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) and his staff after FBI agents this week raided the home of Cindy Archer, who until last month was Walker’s deputy administration secretary.
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported that authorities last year launched a secret “John Doe investigation” into Walker’s time as Milwaukee County executive, looking into allegations that county staffers did political work while at work, and thus on the taxpayers’ dime. Archer, who held the county’s top staff job for the last three years of Walker’s county executive tenure before following him to the governor’s mansion, said she has done nothing wrong nor has Walker ever asked her to do anything improper.
Milwaukee County prosecutors launched the investigation around the time Walker’s then-constituent services coordinator, Darlene Wink, quit, “after admitting that she was frequently posting online comments on Journal Sentinel stories and blogs while on the county clock,” the Journal Sentinel reported:
Nearly all of her posts praised Walker or criticized his opponents.
Authorities later took her work computer and that of Tim Russell, a former Walker campaign staffer who was then working as county housing director, and executed a search warrant of Wink’s home.
Walker, who is out of the state, has yet to comment on the FBI raid and his spokesperson “said his office would have no comment on the raid or investigation.” Authorities have already requested emails and other information from Walker’s campaign, and he hired former U.S. Attorney Steven Biskupic after receiving the subpoena, the AP reported.
Archer has a new job in the state government, which she has yet to begin thanks to an extended sick leave. She is a political appointee, but she held a job that used to be a civil service position. Responding to the FBI raid, Democratic Assembly Leader Peter Barca introduced a bill yesterday to repeal a Walker-backed change that allowed the governor to fill civil service positions with political appointees, the AP reported.
There has already been one conviction relating to Walker’s campaign. A businessman supporter of Walker was sentenced to two years’ probation in July stemming from two felony convictions that of exceeding state campaign donation limits and laundering campaign donations to Walker and other state politicians.