My column in the Wall Street Journal on the John Doe investigation and its impact on Wisconsin politics can be found here. The headline for the piece (which I did not write) goes a bit further than the column itself. I am less concerned with the motives of those who have launched what I regard to be an assault on free speech than I am with the consequences of their actions.
Nevertheless, I don't have a lot of sympathy for the prosecutors' complaints about their motives being questioned. The idea that a Democratic partisan launched a more or less unconstrained and unending series of investigations of a Republican looks bad. The appearance of impropriety is heightened by the fact that some of the legal theories that the prosecutors are pushing are highly questionable and the tactics employed - pre-dawn raids and leaning on witnesses - are dangerous overkill when the subject is, at it is here, fraught with free speech concerns.
Chisholm may be pure of heart but he and his colleagues have only themselves to blame for the accusations being made against them. As soon as this was about political activities by Republicans, they should have gotten out. Entirely. Unfortunately, that point arose sometime in the summer of 2010. Over four years later, they still aren't out.
Cross posted at Purple Wisconsin