Democratic Weekly Radio Address:
"Public Has a Right to Know Details of Gov. Walker's Legal Defense Fund"
Today Rep. Gary Hebl offered the Democratic Weekly Radio Address. The topic is how Gov. Walker has refused to make public any details surrounding the creation of his legal defense fund, including who is donating to the fund and who is benefiting from it. Rep. Hebl and Rep. Jon Richards are introducing legislation that would ensure more transparency for the legal defense funds of the governor or any elected official.
"Gov. Walker's time in office has been marked by unprecedented secrecy and outright hostility toward Wisconsin's proud open government tradition," Rep. Hebl said. "We need to begin restoring the people's faith in their political system. This legislation would be a good first step."
The audio file of this week's address can be found at http://bit.ly/Lgqmnh and the video version of the address can be found at http://bit.ly/L8RQys
A transcript of the address is below:
"For more than two months, Gov. Walker has hidden important information surrounding a criminal defense fund he created in response to the ongoing John Doe investigation into his time as Milwaukee County Executive.
"That's why Rep. Jon Richards and I are introducing a bill that would require increased transparency political legal defense funds in Wisconsin. In short, the Legal Defense Fund Transparency Act would require an official to identify - within one week - anyone who gives money to the fund and anyone who is receiving money from the fund.
"Right now all we know is that Gov. Walker transferred $60,000 from his campaign account to his legal defense fund in April. The governor refuses to tell the public who gave him this money, to whom this money is being paid and for whose benefit this money is being used.
"The public has a right to know who is paying the governor's - or any other elected official's - legal bills when that official or his or her employees are under investigation for violating state ethics or campaign finance laws.
"Gov. Walker's time in office has been marked by unprecedented secrecy and outright hostility toward Wisconsin's proud open government tradition. We need to begin restoring the people's faith in their political system. This legislation would be a great first step."