Dear District Attorney Brad Schimel,
My husband won’t be thrilled that I wrote this column. It deals with his old office, so it’s awkward. He thinks you’re a good guy. I do, too. (That will make him feel etter.) Please don’t assume my opinions reflect his. My opinions are my own only. (Too easy to start a firestorm hear-think Eugene Kane and female robots.)
I once saw you at a cop’s retirement party. You seemed comfortable there. You were the law enforcement candidate in the district attorney’s race, not the glib politician. I like that about you. I think you’ve got the potential to be an excellent DA because you’ve got a lot of integrity. (She is amazing. She picked all that up from one retirement party. I wonder what she could have learned if she had paid attention during the 16 years he worked in the DA's office.)
However, it’s my job to write about the goings-on in Waukesha County. So, I
must ask: What’s going on? (If it's her job to write what's going on, why is she asking him?)
I recognize that the media will praise you for not doing things conservatives like. I also recognize it’s not your job to do things conservatives like. (Does this mean conservatives are against upholiding the law?)
However, I was hoping you wouldn’t go easy on illegal immigrant criminals, drug offenders and sneaky Jim Doyle campaign attorneys, while suddenly getting all bothered by Scott Jensen. I didn’t expect pro-marijuana Web sites would heap praise on you during your first year in office.
I know you’re bound by the law, not politics. Even so, some of your decisions baffle me. (Is she inferring that Paul would put politics before the law?)
You were quoted in the newspaper recently pushing for Jensen’s criminal case to remain in Dane County (he’s filed a court motion seeking to change the venue to Waukesha County.) The Capital Times subsequently praised you. You stated you were working with the attorney general’s office to keep the trial in Dane. Shouldn’t you guys be working together to make sure Jensen gets a fair trial, which - news flash - is not going to happen in Dane? You might as well advocate that Ahab rosecute Moby Dick. (Is she insisting that all the judges in Dane County are corrupt, or that upholding the law is unfair?)
You told the Madison reporters that you knew little about the case except what was in the newspaper, so why weigh in now? Please read the investigative documents that came out during Jensen’s first trial (Don’t go by what you read in most ewspapers. They barely covered them). After plowing through the actual reports (and having Paul explain them), I came to believe that the Jensen prosecution was selective and unfair (Republicans are above the law, dammit!). The Democratic DA’s own investigative reports show he had the goods on numerous Democrats, yet he didn’t charge them. And that’s just for starters. (Tell that to all the legislators that have done time for their convictions.)
If you don’t like political prosecutions - and you haven’t been a very political DA so far - then you shouldn’t be OK with what happened to Jensen because it was the personification of a political prosecution. I’m not asking that you, ironically, make a political decision here yourself. I just wish that, if given the chance, you’d embrace the opportunity to review this case with a fresh eye and, if you see evidence of unfairness, you’d correct it. This is a case crying out for another prosecutor’s eye.
You also withdrew Waukesha County’s request to get federal immigration enforcement authority, even though your support for the request remains on your campaign Web site. The program would have made Waukesha County a nationwide model for dealing with illegal immigrants who commit crimes. (Yeah, by spending county dollars to do a federal job.)(And what is up with her obsession with illegal immigrants. She is fixated with them as much as she is with iT.)
I acknowledge the sheriff and police chief pulled their support first, and federal immigration officials promised to move faster to detain illegal immigrants suspected of committing crimes. The problem is that no one - including the feds - is systematically tracking which criminal defendants in our county are illegal immigrants. (And if Paul and I think it is important, you'd better do it!)
There was no reason to rescind this - pleasing the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel editorial board doesn’t count (pleasing me does count) - and every reason to do it. The head of the top Latino social service agency in town even supported the plan (a fact the media largely ignored). The authority would have been narrowly tailored to empower local cops to detain and identify illegal immigrants WHO COMMIT CRIMES. (Uh oh, now she's channeling her inner John.)
How many illegal immigrants are in the criminal justice system right now? If you can answer that question, call me. I’ll run the number next week. (Didn't her students do a study of this? Couldn't they figure it out?)
If you can’t, please reconsider. This is about public safety. For those who think illegal immigration is only a national issue, I have three words: Frame Park rapist. (See! There's one name! It's an epidemic. Just like voter fraud.)
You also took a pass at making a case against Michael Maistelman, the governor’s campaign attorney who was shamelessly firing off e-mails to the state Elections Board before it destroyed Mark Green’s campaign. (Again, there you go Brad, putting the law before politics. Now knock it off!)
Aggressive prosecutors can go down in flames occasionally (Georgia Thompson) (Georgia Thompson was a prosecutor? I thought she was the one that got railroaded.), but they also uphold an important societal line by taking tough cases. Give me the principled, aggressive prosecutor (like my hunky hubby) any day over the too-cautious one (McCann).
You next advocated for decriminalizing marijuana. This got you praised on the Madison Web site of a group advocating against "marijuana prohibition." You were quoted as saying lots of people have tried marijuana and "times have changed."
That’s why we shouldn’t decriminalize the drug. (Change is not good. It's too much like progression. And that's too much like progressive. And that's too much like liberal. And that's too much like change. And that's not good.)
Soon after, it was reported that authorities seized more marijuana in Waukesha County than the previous eight years combined, a record.
DA Schimel, I want you to succeed. This is constructive criticism, not a personal attack. (Just a warning.)
But I feel like Cher in "Moonstruck" right now: "Snap out of it"!
Here are two other observations that have been mailed to me about this column (with slight editing for grammar and/or appropriateness):
What's the subliminal message here? “Call Paul before you do something stupid Brad. He'll point you in the right direction and then you can make it up to him when he needs a favor”? Maybe he already does and that's why he's getting in trouble? Or maybe he wants to be something other than a DA someday and realizes he needs a better role model than Paul "Not One Day As A Judge" Bucher?
Stay tuned for next week for Jessica’s thrilling column, “Dear diary, this one is so secret, even I don’t know I’m writing it.”