U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) endorsed Josh Kaul for Wisconsin Attorney General on Tuesday. Given how much Perkins Coie, Kaul’s law firm, has tried to do for her and the Democratic Party, Baldwin’s endorsement is hardly surprising.
When it was exposed that Baldwin failed to investigate the problems at the Tomah VA hospital despite a whistle blower drawing the attention of her office to the crisis situation, Baldwin turned to a Democratic political fixer, Marc Elias of Perkins Coie, to try to get her out of the jam.
The Washington Free Beacon reported two “dark money” groups founded by Elias, Majority Forward and Vote Vets PAC, then ran ads attempting to defend Baldwin’s record. Vote Vets PAC has continued to do so in an effort to rehabilitate Baldwin’s image. The money for those groups came from a “Super PAC” associated with former Senator Harry Reid, D-Nevada, called Senate Majority PAC.
Perkins Coie was paid $90,000 for Elias’ work on behalf of Baldwin.
Elias and Perkins Coie made national headlines recently when their role in the production of the “Steele dossier” was uncovered. Elias and Perkins Coie acted as a go-between, taking money from the Democratic National Committee and Hillary Clinton’s campaign for president and then paying Fusion GPS for their opposition research file, the Steele dossier.
“The Clinton campaign paid Perkins Coie $5.6 million in legal fees from June 2015 to December 2016, according to campaign finance records, and the DNC paid the firm $3.6 million in ‘legal and compliance consulting’’ since November 2015,” the Washington Post reported last October.
While it’s disputed how much the file played a role in President Barack Obama’s Justice Department launching an investigation of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, it was used in a request for a FISA warrant to investigate the campaign even as its origins were not fully disclosed at the time.
Josh Kaul is also an attorney with Perkins Coie and actually represented Clinton in the unnecessary post-election recount of Wisconsin’s ballots. Ironically, one of the reasons Baldwin used for endorsing Kaul was the protection of voting rights even though Kaul played an active role in trying to undermine the election results in Wisconsin in 2016. (Perhaps he should have advised his client to actually campaign in Wisconsin rather than whine about the results afterward.)
It’s unknown what role Kaul played in the creation of the Steele dossier and his campaign did not reply when asked by RightWisconsin earlier this year. However, earlier this year, Republican Attorney Generals Association Communications Director Zack Roday said Kaul had a responsibility to comment on Perkins Coie’s role in the creation of the Steele dossier.
“Josh Kaul claims to be against partisan politics, but he works for Hillary Clinton’s political hatchet shop and has even represented Clinton in court. Wisconsinites can see right through these phony partisan games,” Roday said. “Bottom line, Hillary Clinton’s lawyer should stop hiding and comment on his firms role in the dossier.”
As for Baldwin, rather than come up with a bunch of excuses to endorse Kaul, her fellow Democrat, she could have spared the press release and the endorsement when a simple “thank you” to the Democrats’ favorite law firm, with all of its secrets, would have sufficed. But then, for trying to save her political career, endorsing a Perkins Coie lawyer like Kaul was the least Baldwin could do.