Update on the Tate and Zielinski meltdowns
As you may recall (no pun intended) both the Democratic Party Chairman Mike Tate and Democratic Party spokesman Graeme Zielinski accused Waukesha County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus of tampering with Tuesday night’s election results. Tate backed away from the remarks later by saying they were made in the “heat of the moment” but neither he or Zielinski have apologized to Nickolaus.
I’ve been critical of Nickolaus but it’s pretty outrageous for the leadership of a political party to accuse a county clerk, even one with Nickolaus’ track record, of tampering with an election without any proof. That’s one of the most serious charges someone can make regarding an election, and Zielinski and Tate should be forced to apologize.
Had a brief online chat with Jeff Christensen just now, the fifth congressional district chairman for the Democratic Party, and he said he would look into what happened Tuesday night to see why Zielinski and Tate said the things they did.
(Christensen also said the 5th CD Democrats are finally getting a website makeover soon.)
Nickolaus was upset she had not received an apology for the scurrilous attacks made by Graeme Zielinski, Democratic Party of Wisconsin communications director.
“Wouldn’t that have been nice,” Nickolaus said Wednesday.
“I didn’t get one from the Democratic chairman either,” she said referring to state party Chairman Mike Tate.
Zielinski accused Nickolaus of tampering with election results out of Menomonee Falls in the race won by Republican state Sen. Alberta Darling over Democratic state Rep. Sandy Pasch.
“What we saw last night was unsubstantiated information given out and then when they found out that it wasn’t true, they didn’t make a big deal out of it that it was untrue like they did during the night where they thought something was happening,” Nickolaus said. “Instead of checking the facts, they imagined things.”
By late Tuesday evening, Nickolaus posted all the results in Waukesha County except for results from Menomonee Falls Wards 14, 15 and 21, from ballots cast at the Lilly Road Fire Station.
Both Nickolaus and Menomonee Falls Clerk Janice Moyer said results were delayed from the station because workers had to count about 200 absentee ballots at the end of the night and it had more than 1,800 votes cast there, the highest among the village’s 10 polling places involved in the election. Nickolaus posted all the results from Waukesha County online by midnight.
At about 11 p.m. however, Zielinski attacked Nickolaus for not releasing vote totals.
“We believe right now that the election in this contest has been tampered with by Waukesha County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus,” Zielinski said Tuesday night. “She is sitting on votes. We believe right now there are severe irregularities in Waukesha County.
“We believe the very fate of the Wisconsin Senate right now hangs in the balance and is in the hands of a woman who’s already shown extreme incompetence,” Zielinski said Tuesday night. “The Democratic Party of Wisconsin believes that Kathy Nickolaus is tampering with this election. She’s sitting on votes.”
On Wednesday, Zielinski said the Democratic Party wouldn’t pursue any action against Nickolaus and he remained unapologetic.
“We still think the voters of Waukesha County have a lot to worry about when Kathy Nickolaus counts votes. But on this one, we’re not pursuing anything,” Zielinski said. “This does nothing to diminish the real concerns, legitimate concerns of voters in Waukesha County about the competence, at the very least, of Nickolaus.”