Evers Covers Up Illegal/Unethical Behavior By Staff

Accountability? Nope.

Gov. Tony Evers on Thursday sidestepped bipartisan calls for him to fire the unidentified staffer that secretly recorded his phone conversation with two top Republicans.

Evers, in a media call with reporters, repeatedly declined to identify the staffer who, without Evers’ knowledge, recorded his May 14 phone conversation with Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, R-Rochester, and Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, R-Juneau, that has prompted a bipartisan outcry and calls for the staffer to be fired.

Evers declined to identify the staffer responsible for authorizing the recording and didn’t say what disciplinary action, if any, is being taken against that person.

“A staffer wanted help in taking notes and that’s why that staffer did that and I will not discuss personnel issues in public but needless to say the practice has ended with this one time,” Evers said.

As others have said, Wisconsin law requires that at least one participant in the call consent to recording it. If the staffer was not a participant and was merely listening in, then he or she could not legally consent. But beyond that, the ethical breach is monumental. Assuming that Evers is telling the truth about being utterly ignorant of the actions of his own staff, the alleged staffer breached the trust of both his employer and the other people on the call. He or she would and should be fired by any leader with a modicum of integrity.
Evers’ refusal to even offer a simple apology – much less hold his staff accountable – speaks to his partisan and bilious personality.