In case you were wondering where justice was hiding in Wisconsin, she’s reared her head in Waukesha County. County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus will be investigated by the Government Accountability Board, which certified the Wisconsin Supreme Court election in question.
A former Dane country prosecutor will finally be looking into Nickolaus’ conduct. And by conduct, I mean misconduct, including open ballot bags with no secure chain of custody, voter rolls with tags that don’t match ballot bags, a canvas called a day early which took place with Nickolaus never telling the other canvassers about the “lost” votes for two days during the canvas and much more.
This particular Nickolaus saga started when she announced that she had left the city of Brookfield off of the totals she initially reported, but this is hardly her first brush with being investigated. Nickolaus has a track record of criminal investigations and reprimands from county officials regarding the failure of security in her procedures, which she chose to ignore, preferring to keep all of the voting data on her computer and refusing to upload it per procedure to the county computers. Under this modus operandi, she suddenly discovered votes she had “lost” by forgetting to press “save” and hence, Nickolaus came under scrutiny. Normally in a canvas, those votes could be accounted for in real ballots by the canvassers, but they were not given an opportunity to verify Nickolaus’s found votes as she did not tell them about the error until minutes before they faced a press conference, long after the canvas was completed.
In 2005, Ms. Nickolaus was found to have sent out “sample ballots” to the voters that came premarked for a certain candidate. Ms Nickolaus’ many errors always benefit a Republican, but this should be no surprise as she used to be the computer analyst for the GOP assembly, during which tenure she was granted immunity in a criminal investigation resulting from said work.
The Post Crescent reports:
The complaint against Kathy Nickolaus was filed with the state’s Government Accountability Board by campaign officials for JoAnne Kloppenburg, who lost the April 5 election to Justice David Prosser.
Kloppenburg’s campaign manager said Wednesday that Tim Verhoff informed the campaign that he’d be investigating.
The wheels of justice can be slow and frustrating. It will be even more disturbing if the misconduct of Nickolaus proves to have swung the election results for the incumbent conservative Supreme Justice Prosser, who won after initial results had his challenger Kloppenburg winning. Since then, Prosser was the swing vote reversing Judge Sumi’s void of the bill that killed collective bargaining in Wisconsin and he has been accused of choking a female Supreme Court Justice during those deliberations. The choking incident is currently under investigation.
The good news is that the GAB did not turn their backs on the logs detailing the problems with the Waukesha County process provided by the Kloppenburg campaign.