Thursday, September 22, 2005

The Price of Crime? $42.07

This article made me laugh. Not in a good way though.

Turns out, a felony was probably committed, and State Sen. Alberta Darling is only going to have to pay the state $42.07. Now, Darling wasn't the one committing the felony, so why is she paying the $42.07 you ask?

The article is about Chris Slinker, who was an aide for Sen. Darling. He worked out of a district office of Darling's in Menomonee Falls. Slinker was the only person employed by the office at the time. He made over two hundred phone calls to Shawn Wanta, and he made them from the Meno. Falls office.

Well, who's Shawn Wanta you ask? Well, the article doesn't give a job title, but he was paid almost $1100 dollars by working for Darling in October of 2004 as a consultant for her re-election campaign. A funny side note about being a 'consultant'. Darling had no idea who Wanta was before this story came out. But that's not where the problem lies. Wanta currently makes yard signs and web sites for political candidates. Wanta's most recent work in yard signs and web work came for two Meno Falls Trustee candidates. Chris Slinker is a Meno. Falls Trustee, and an avid supporter of the two aforementioned Trustee candidates.

There was recently a very bitter battle in the election cycle with Village President Jefferson Davis ( well, if that isn't a political birthname ), where some of the Trustee candidates spent a record $19,000 in a losing effort to get a seat.

Confused yet?

Well, basically, Slinker was calling Wanta from Darling's office phone. And making campaign calls while on the clock with the State is a felony here in Wisconsin. Ut-oh.

So when a reporter finds this out, Slinker says he and Wanta are 'good buddies', and that the calls were 'personal in nature'. Suuuuure they were. He was actually quoted as saying they would speak about politics and their fantasy football teams. HA!

So when Darling gets word of this, Slinker resigns. He said he did so on good terms, but Darling says she would have fired him, had he not resigned.

So then at the end of the day, there's no further investigation, no felony charges pressed, just Alberta Darling writing a check to the State for $42.07. And this is just small time LOCAL politics. I can only imagine what goes on at higher levels of government. A favorite quote of mine is:

"There are two things you never truly want to see how they get made. Hot dogs, and laws."

Well, if the above story is any indication as to how the people that make the laws are put into place, well then, yikes. Is it too much to ask/think that the people that serve in government should see it as just that, a service, and not a career?


At 9:21 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Chris is one of the only openly gay repiblicans and now running for a state senate seat. Odd to have Slinker, an openly gay man, on the republican ticket.


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