Matt Rothschild
Op Ed

Kaul Should Charge Ron Johnson, 10 Fake Electors

Illegal efforts to overturn 2020 election should be prosecuted by Attorney General.

By - Jan 8th, 2023 09:44 am
Ron Johnson. Photo by Gage Skidmore from Peoria, AZ, United States of America / Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Ron Johnson. Photo by Gage Skidmore from Peoria, AZ, United States of America / Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-SA 2.0

It’s been two full years since the Jan. 6 insurrection and the attempted coup by Donald Trump and his co-conspirators.

In Wisconsin, those co-conspirators include Sen. Ron Johnson and the 10 false electors who fraudulently swore that they were the actual electors from the Badger State to the Electoral College.

Two years is way too long not to charge these individuals for their role in the most shameful attack on our democracy in our history.

U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland has been woefully tardy in bringing the Justice Department’s investigations to fruition and indicting Donald Trump.

And here in Wisconsin, our own attorney general, Josh Kaul, and Dane County District Attorney Ismael Ozanne, have also been dragging their feet.

We’ve known about Ron Johnson’s perfidious role on Jan. 6 for a long time now: How he tried to intervene with Vice President Pence just minutes before the Electoral College got underway by offering to deliver to Pence the slates of false electors from Wisconsin and Michigan.

And just this week we learned that Johnson, a month earlier, had been urging the Republican Legislature in Wisconsin simply to disregard the vote tally and declare Trump the winner.

Andrew Hitt, then-chair of the Wisconsin Republican Party and one of the false electors, provided the House Jan. 6 Select Committee with a text confirming that Johnson contacted him on Dec. 7, 2020, with this appallingly anti-democratic idea.

“Ron called me … and now is arguing for us to have the legislature choose the electors. OMG,” Hitt’s text message said.

This blatant and sinister effort to disenfranchise the 1,630,866 citizens who voted for Joe Biden in Wisconsin cannot go unprosecuted.

Much of the illegal criminal conspiracy took place right here in Dane County, so DA Ozanne has jurisdiction. Eleven months ago, Law Forward wrote Ozanne and urged him to investigate the false electors on several possible grounds, including fraud.

The 10 false electors are Carol Brunner, Mary Buestrin, Darryl Carlson, Bill Feehan, Scott Grabins, Hitt, Kathy Kiernan, Kelly Ruh, Robert Spindell, and Pam Travis. Spindell, amazingly enough, still sits on the Wisconsin Elections Commission.

But we’ve heard nothing from Ozanne.

Attorney General Kaul also has jurisdiction. His counterpart in Michigan opened an investigation of the false electors there. Why hasn’t he done that here?

And why is no one – not Ozanne, not Kaul, not Garland – investigating Ron Johnson?

The Jan. 6 plotters were scheming not only against Joe Biden but also against our democratic system.

They all must be held accountable for their actions, and that includes Wisconsin’s own culprits.

Enough of the dilly-dallying around! It’s time, it’s way past time, for the prosecutors to prosecute.

Matthew Rothschild, Executive Director of the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign.

4 thoughts on “Op Ed: Kaul Should Charge Ron Johnson, 10 Fake Electors”

  1. Jaimcb says:

    Yes! Absolutely! It’s bad enough that Johnson won re-election. Now we’re stuck with him being able to wreak more havoc, commit more crimes, without being held accountable. We know he’s smart enough to know better. We know he knows right from wrong. We know he doesn’t believe that Q stuff. If they were actively investigating him already, perhaps that would keep him in check until he gets prosecuted for his crimes.

  2. Keith Prochnow says:

    Eleven politicians, clearly guilty of fraud. I want arrests!!

  3. ringo muldano says:

    Jan. 6 was a dry run led by a bumbling fool and MAGA dolts… It’s about how much can (will) they get away with and not be held accountable to the law.

  4. gerrybroderick says:

    Ron Jon and “The Hitt Parade.” Patriots all. And each deserving of nomination to receive The 2023 Benedict Arnold Award.

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