Following Dan Kapanke’s most recent ethics violation he wrote a piece in the La Crosse Tribune amounting to, “aw shucks, no big deal guys, it won’t happen again.”
Should we believe him this time?
Last year it took a lawsuit from the DPW to expose a state-funded staffer for Kapanke omitted relevant emails when responding to an open record request. The emails were used to plan what amounted to a campaign event. Another state-funded Kapanke staffer helped plan the event, later marking the days as vacation, another violation.
Following the suit, Kapanke promised to pay back the cost to the state. He said he would make his first payment before the end of 2009. That didn’t happen.
In 2006 another state-funded aide to Kapanke was caught politicking on taxpayer time, using a state copy machine to reproduce campaign documents belonging to a Democrat.
The Loggers Foundation was specifically set up to avoid conflicts of interest between businesses lobbying the legislature and Kapanke. The idea was, if Kapanke didn’t personally benefit from the businesses advertising money, there was no harm in them advertising with the Loggers. Kapanke himself said “”I don’t see any problem, as long as the money is not going to benefit me.”
That money clearly went to benefit Kapanke, who is now running interference in an attempt to distract from his long history of ethical violations.
Kapanke accuses Ron Kind of “mudslinging” when bringing up the wrongdoing. Will he accuse the GAB of mudslinging if the agency fines him for this clear violation?
Remember, Kapanke admitted taking twice the amount of money from the foundation than the original complaint specified, $32,000, only after being caught.
Just another “honest” mistake?