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Vos Can’t Brush this Embarrassment Under the Rug

(MADISON)—Today, Senator Tim Carpenter (D-Milwaukee) issued the following statement regarding Speaker Robin Vos’ unilateral decision to shutter the Office of Special Counsel (OSC) headed by former Supreme Court Justice Michael Gableman:

“Speaker Vos finally fired Michael Gableman and took the action my Democratic colleagues and I have been urging for months. However, it is not appropriate to merely fire Michael Gableman and try to brush under the rug all that was wrong with the Office of Special Counsel. Taxpayers are still owed a full accounting of the $1.3 million this fake investigation has cost so far. We must direct the Legislative Audit Bureau to conduct an audit so legislators and the public can find out exactly what was done with taxpayer money at the OSC.

“We still don’t have answers to several questions. For example, what documentation exists outlining the OSC’s formal mission or objective? What was the selection process used to hire staff? What was really happening at OSC if not a real investigation? If any other state program exceeded its budget by over 100%, an audit would be an assumed course of action so that we can understand what went wrong and take proactive steps to prevent that from happening in the future.

“These unanswered questions and undisputed facts give the OSC the appearance of a rogue agency engaged in waste, fraud, and abuse. The Legislative Audit Bureau exists to assist us in our oversight of state operations, and to identify whenever fraud, waste, or mismanagement takes place within state agencies. We are concerned that these issues occurred within the OSC under the direction of former Justice Gableman and Speaker Robin Vos. For that reason, we believe it is necessary to conduct an audit and shed light on the OSC’s actions and inactions.

“The costs from the Office of Special Counsel investigation continue to grow, and the taxpayers deserve to know how and why their money has been spent. We owe that to them.”