Huffpost Politics

Scott Walker Recall: Teachers Tarred As 'Radicals' In Anonymous Flyer

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An anonymous flyer in Wisconsin urged parents to find out whether their children's teachers signed the petition to recall Gov. Scott Walker.
An anonymous flyer in Wisconsin urged parents to find out whether their children's teachers signed the petition to recall Gov. Scott Walker.

A conservative group in Milwaukee helped produce an anti-teacher flyer that identified the names and salaries of Janesville, Wis., public-school teachers and urged recipients to find out whether their child's teacher signed a petition to recall Gov. Scott Walker (R), the Janesville Gazette reports.

The flyer, which was delivered to local homes by an anonymous distributor, directed readers to a website listing residents who had signed the Walker recall petition. It also provided a "Parents' Rights Protection Form" that urged parents to request that "my child be assigned to a classroom taught by a non-radical teacher during the 2012-2013 school year." The flyer listed more than 300 teachers, with salaries ranging from $59,000 to $75,000.

According to the paper, Citizens for Responsible Government, also known as CRG Network, filed a freedom-of-information request to obtain the public information about schoolteachers. Chris Kliesmet, executive administrator of CRG Network, told the Gazette that his group merely did the "grunt work" for the flyer at the request of local activists.

This isn't the first anti-teacher flyer distributed in Janesville in the runup to the recall election. In March, a similar notice went to local homes referencing the "dumbed-down curriculum," "Marxist/globalist agenda" and "sexualization of children" in local public schools.

On its website, CRG Network says the mission of its political action committee is to "help citizens elect fiscally conservative candidates, assert property rights, and remove corrupt and/or fiscally irresponsible politicians from office." The group led a successful 2002 effort to oust Milwaukee County Executive Tom Ament, who retired under the recall threat and was ultimately replaced by Scott Walker in a special election. After eight years as county executive, Walker was elected governor in 2010.

Walker now faces Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett (D) in a hotly contested recall ballot slated for June. Walker became the target of a statewide recall effort -- and rose to national prominence -- after pushing through a highly controversial law last year that stripped public-sector workers in the state of many collective-bargaining rights. The recall fight has since become a focal point of the ongoing battle between conservatives and labor groups across the country.

Unions renewed their attack on Walker earlier this month when a video came to light in which the governor had described the rollback of collective bargaining rights as part of a "divide and conquer strategy." The video showed the governor speaking with Wisconsin billionaire and major Walker donor Diane Hendricks in January 2011.

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