These warning proved true.
"Overall an estimated $137.5 million was spent on the unprecedented 15 recall races for governor, lieutenant governor and state Senate in 2011 and 2012, reports the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign. This is Wisconsin, not populous Florida.
When news broke in October 2013 that a new John Doe probe had been launched (Bice. MJS) looking into what appears to be criminal campaign funding in the 2011-12 recall elections, Republicans and their front groups went ballistic.
The Wall Street Journal called the investigation, which finds out if and by whom crimes have been committed, an attack on GOP speech.
John Doe probes in Wisconsin are begun when a district attorney, under supervision of a judge, has more than reasonable suspension and perhaps less than probable cause to believe a crime has been committed, and investigation is/would be obstructed, is impractical, or might unnecessarily harm innocents, hence the secrecy.
Wisconsin John Doe probes are closely regulated, but the GOP and its GOP propaganda sheets believe that if the GOP is investigated, then by right the Democratic Party must also be investigated.
Other Republicans say the John Doe probe is a fishing expedition, but when pressed for facts to back up the assertion, no Republican offers anything beyond not liking the "unchecked, unbridled scope of these investigations," as Milwaukee County Sheriff David A. Clarke Jr. told the Wisconsin Reporter.
Left unasked by the GOP Party sheet is the question: How do you know this, Sheriff Clarke? How do you what the John Doe is investigating, who and why? Who did you talk to?
But something has the GOP spooked.
In a new development, the Franklin Center for Government and Integrity, is attacking the Wisconsin John Doe investigation using anonymous sources and a variety of we-don't-like-you statements, devoid of facts like Clarke. This is typical, as Bill Lueders writes under the "Talk is cheap in John Doe probe':
A lot of folks — perhaps too many — are spouting off about the John Doe probe launched by the Milwaukee County District Attorney’s office into the campaign of Republican Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and more than two dozen conservative groups, among others.
Lueders could write a new story, Talk is desperate in John Doe probe; see Why Is the Franklin Center Attacking the John Doe Probe? in The Progressive and PR Watch.
Wisconsin used to be the butt of friendly jokes for it fair and clean elections. Not any more.
Republican illegal collaboration with independent groups is suspected across the political spectrum.
As David Koch told a Palm Beach Post reporter in 2012, "(Koch) took credit for the fact the Republicans maintained control of the legislature in the (Wisconsin) Senate" recall elections held last August. He said it 'was the work our people did, what Americans for Prosperity did and the money spent that enabled them [the Republicans] to keep control in the [state] senate."
For now the public GOP line is: Stop looking at me that way, leave me alone, and quit asking all these questions.
If the GOP members served with a subpoena are sticking to this line, improbable, their politcal and legal futures are not very bright.