Earlier this year, ten Wisconsinites — moms and dads, public servants, and business owners, lifelong residents, and transplants to this state – filed suit against Senator Ron Johnson and Representatives Tom Tiffany and Scott Fitzgerald. (Complaint) They asked a federal court in Milwaukee to declare that Defendants were participants in the now judicially recognized conspiracy led by President Donald Trump to undermine the lawful transition of presidential power on January 6, 2021. If the Plaintiffs win the suit, Defendants will need to amend or withdraw their Declarations of Candidacy (required by state law) in Wisconsin – meaning they will be unable to run for re-election in 2022. Plaintiffs filed the lawsuit to prove NO ONE IS ABOVE THE LAW.
Plaintiffs believe that American elections should be decided by the will of the people. They brought the suit because Johnson, Tiffany, and Fitzgerald conspired to sabotage the results of the 2020 election and overturn the will of the people. The Defendants participated in an attack against our country. The Defendants betrayed their oath to all Americans and the U.S. Constitution.
Article 3 of the Fourteenth Amendment provides a way to hold Johnson, Tiffany, and Fitzgerald accountable. With funding from the Minocqua Brewing Company Super PAC, and legal representation from Laffey, Leitner & Goode, LLC, Plaintiffs came together to defend America’s most sacred freedom: to decide with our votes who will represent us and govern in our name and to ensure the peaceful transition of power.
Defendants now seek to dismiss the suit, hoping to silence the Plaintiffs by questioning their motives and asking that the suit be dismissed on various legal grounds.
The Plaintiffs refuse to be silenced. They have now filed their opposition to the motions to dismiss (Opposition to Johnson and Opposition to Tiffany-Fitzgerald) advanced by Johnson, Tiffany, and Fitzgerald, which include Plaintiffs’. sworn Declarations explaining how Defendants’ conduct over the last election has impaired their First Amendment rights rooted in Plaintiffs’ decades-long involvement in political activism and public policy. Consolidated Declarations
Plaintiff James Botsford, an attorney from Marathon County, Wisconsin (and neither a Democrat nor Republican) declared: “I believe in the clean-handed integrity of our Constitution. I believe it is at risk as a result of the attempts to steal the last presidential election. I believe those persons involved include our Defendants, and that if they are not held accountable then their subversive actions will become the norm and our way of life will be diminished and put at great risk.” Botsford Declaration
Similarly, Plaintiff Margaret DeMuth, an activist who regularly participates in substantive policy discussions with friends, family, and community members, now finds herself having to discuss crimes against our nation rather than critical matters of policy: “This additional effort is necessary in order to help people feel that citizen action such as voting is worth their time. In recent months of phoning and canvassing neighbors to talk about voting and to learn about what matters to them, I am hearing a fervent concern that politicians are corrupt and cannot be trusted. This detracts from the essential work of understanding the choices that impact voters in the 2022 and future elections.” Demuth Declaration
In at least one case, family relationships have been irreparably damaged due to Defendants’ conduct, as Plaintiff Richard Bechen told the Court. Bechen Declaration
Plaintiffs brought their lawsuit out of a sense of duty to benefit all citizens. As active participants in our. democracy, they will not stand idly by while Johnson, Tiffany and Fitzgerald continue to undermine our democratic principles and the foundation of this republic. The Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution is meant to protect the fundamental norm that those whose swear an oath to the Constitution actually uphold it. Plaintiffs must be heard, and Ron Johnson, Tom Tiffany, and Scott Fitzgerald must never again be allowed to run for office nor govern in our name. NO ONE IS ABOVE THE LAW.