Monday, January 13, 2014

"I'm Just A Bill" Madison Edition


It's been a long time since School House Rock showed us as kids how laws begin as good ideas that inspire people to contact their politicians to write and pass into law.

Not in Wisconsin.

Bills in Wisconsin get ordered by campaign contributors like a bottle of wine off an exclusive wine menu. It's not cheap and not just anyone can order one.

This is not a new practice, but the Walker Administration has become so blatant in their pay-to-play deals, even the most cynical among us are gobsmacked.

Take a new bill introduced by the planet known as Joel Kleefisch - AB 540. It was a controversial bill right away - repealing child custody determinations, allegedly to make them fairer to divorced fathers. It was the child support provision - allowing judges to not consider income above $150,000 in calculating child support payments - that caught everyone's attention.

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Hmmm. So who would a bill like this benefit? Only wealthy parents who want to pay as little child support as possible.

Who the hell asked for this bill everyone wondered? Since all correspondence on legislation becomes public once a bill is introduced - it didn't take long to find out.

Michael Eisenga.

Michael Eisenga is a law-breaking, tax vagrant, douchebag and millionaire, who famously divorced his wife and upon being ordered to pay for health insurance for his children - signed them up for Badgercare.

Eisenga has been trying to worm his way out of paying child support ever since he got divorced - claiming he doesn't make that much money. (Seven figures doesn't go as far as it used to.) Eisenga got turned down again in October.

What's a guy to do who doesn't want to lawfully provide for his family? Change the law.



That's exactly what Kleefisch did for Eisenga and public records show that he and his attorney were very specific in making sure the bill, when it became law, would be retroactive so as to benefit Eisenga.

What is less known about Eisenga besides his campaign contributions to Scott Walker and both Rebecca and Joel Kleefisch, is his brief employment of Walker Deputy Chief of Staff and felon, Kelly Rindfleisch.

Now that's the kinda friend a politician can love - someone who will hire a staff member taking the fall for your favorite Governor.

Rindfleisch helped Eisenga in his effort to change his company name after being fined over $140k for breaking the state's no-call list law and failing to pay state taxes to the tune of $225,000. Eisenga let Rindfleisch go right before she was indicted on charges of misconduct.

Of course Kleefisch would be more than happy to make sure that bill said exactly what Eisenga wanted and we're quite sure Scott Walker would be pleased to sign it into law.

Critics of the bill say it would make hundreds of other cases retroactive - creating havoc for the courts. The Wisconsin State Bar - Family Law section has denounced the bill, and for what it's worth, Mike Eisenga's ex-wife thinks it sucks too.