(The Center Square) One of the leading voices in the push to clarify Wisconsin’s election laws is issuing a warning to her own side about ending the investigation into the 2020 election.,
Rep. Janel Brandtjen, R-Menomonee Falls, on Monday said the investigation by Wisconsin Special Counsel Mike Gableman must be kept going until the mayors of Milwaukee, Madison, Green Bay, Racine, and Kenosha answer questions about what actually transpired during the 2020 election.
“The investigation has been stalled because officials in Democratic cities have not been cooperating; only one subpoenaed party has appeared before the Office of Special Counsel at this point. Democrats cannot be allowed to circumvent justice,” Brandtjen said in a statement.
Assembly Speaker Robin Vos hired Gableman last summer under a $676,000 taxpayer-funded contract that paid Gableman $11,000 a month. Vos twice extended the contract, most recently last month through Saturday.
As the deadline loomed, former President Donald Trump issued a not-so veiled threat Monday at Vos.
“Anyone calling themselves a Republican in Wisconsin should support the continued investigation in Wisconsin without interference,” Trump said in a statement.
“I understand some RINOs have primary challengers in Wisconsin,” Trump said without naming Vos or his primary challenger, Adam Steen. “I’m sure their primary opponents would get a huge bump in the polls if these RINOs interfere.”
Brandtjen also has been leading her own investigation into the 2020 election through her Assembly Committee on Campaigns and Elections.
“If this was the most fair and transparent election as election officials claim, why do they choose not to cooperate?” Brandtjen asked.
She likewise warned Vos not to end the investigation before those answers are provided.
“If Speaker Vos shuts down the Office of Special Counsel’s investigation now, not only will he be condoning cheating, he’ll be legalizing it,” Brandtjen said.
The Gableman investigation hasn’t moved in months. He continues to wait for a judge in Madison and another in Waukesha County to rule on the subpoenas that he issued to the mayors of Milwaukee, Madison, Green Bay, Racine, and Kenosha, as well as election officials in the state.
Earlier this month, Gableman accused those judges of slow-walking his case.
Brandtjen said two audits have found opportunities for fraud and a list of Wisconsin election laws that were broken or ignored. She said this is not the time to give up on the investigation.
“The people of Wisconsin deserve to know to what extent the Wisconsin Elections Commission, the five mayors, and various election officials, acted outside of the law,” Brandtjen added.
Gableman, in a series of recent appearances on former Trump adviser Steve Bannon’s podcasts, has urged Vos to allow the work to continue. Gableman asked listeners to call and email Vos to tell him not to have movers remove state furniture from his office on Tuesday.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.