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Judge Guts John Doe Witch Hunt

by Jerry Bader

It appears a Wisconsin judge recognized the latest John Doe Probe by a Milwaukee County Assistant DA Bruce Landgrafffor what it is; a witch hunt. The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Judge Gregory Peters quashed subpoenas to conservative groups and ordered the return of property to the targets of a so-called John Doe campaign-finance probe.

The Journal was first to report the subpoenas were being served in the middle of the night, property taking from a number of conservative groups. Ostensibly Landgraf was alleging that these independent groups illegally coordinated with Governor Scott Walker's campaign in the recall election and with that of Republican State Senate Candidates facing recall.

Conservatives believed this was an attempt by Landgraf to chill these groups into inactivity during the 2014 elections, much as the IRS did with Tea Party groups in 2012.  As the Journal writes, the battle isn't it over but this is a major victory.

Interestingly, all of the Journal's reporting on this has been in opinion pieces. An interesting footnote because these are major scoops and it's unusual that they wouldn't use them in factual news reporting before writing opinion pieces about them.