Former state Supreme Court Justice Michael Gableman is featured in a Sept. 20 video on a new Rumble account for the Wisconsin Office of Special Counsel. He describes the investigation he is undertaking, one of multiple ongoing election integrity efforts in Wisconsin.
Gableman was appointed to head the investigation by Republican Speaker of the State Assembly Robin Vos in June. As head of a team of retired law enforcement officers, Gableman was later given expanded authority to subpoena witnesses and hire full-time investigators as Special Counsel after he attended Mike Lindell's Cyber Symposium and after Vos joined President Trump on his private plane.
After discussing the varying definitions that have been used for different implementations of election audits, Justice Gableman implied that the investigation he is conducting could include some forensic components:
"Now, it's important to note that the term 'forensic audit' is a confusing one, and it's confusing because it has no commonly accepted definition. Rather, the definition of each forensic audit is created by those who control that audit. The office of Special Counsel is conducting a full investigation in order to get to the truth of what happened in our 2020 election, and that full investigation may include a vigorous and comprehensive audit if the facts that are discovered justifies such a course of action."
This comes after an Aug. 25 statement released by Speaker Vos along with Assembly Republicans that said:
"We believe a cyber-forensic audit is necessary to ensure issues did not happen in 2020. We have allocated additional resources to Justice Gableman to ensure this investigation gets to the truth."
Justice Gableman claims impartiality and uncorrupted incentives:
"[The investigation] will be guided by a search for the truth, and not by political priorities or political timetables. This investigation will test information we receive against other evidence, and it would be foolish to prejudge evidence by prejudice against individuals. In other words, this investigation will be guided by facts, not personalities. The purpose of the investigation is truth, and not expedience."
There has been skepticism as to whether Speaker Vos and Justice Gableman can be trusted to find the truth about the 2020 General election in Wisconsin or whether the appointment and secret investigation are just whitewash, aiming to quell populist sentiment while avoiding any real accountability. As Rumble user ChineseSniffles put it in a comment on Justice Gableman's new video:
"More lawyered up word salad happy talk. Been there, done that. Stall tactic. It's not rocket science. Show us the ballots, census and equipment or step down. They think we're stupid."
Many observers will be hoping for a chance that findings might change the results of the election, but Justice Gableman makes clear his investigation has no such aim:
"This is not an election contest. We are not challenging the results of the 2020 election. Rather, we are holding government officials accountable to the public for their actions surrounding the elections. My job as Special Counsel is to gather all relevant information, and while I will draw my own conclusions, my goal is to put everything I know and everything I learn before you, the citizen, so that you can make up your own mind."
Although it's uncertain when Justice Gableman's newly released video was recorded, he says in it, "Just last week, once the assembly approved the funding of our investigation, and our investigation began in earnest," showing that it was likely to have been recorded over a week ago, as the approval of the $680,000 budget occurred around Sept. 1. Justice Gableman goes on to say that at the time of funding approval, "we'd already met with witnesses and made requests for the preservation of possible evidence." This refers to Gableman's request to the Wisconsin Elections Commission to preserve evidence, including information on voting machines.
The request letter was sent to Meagan Wolfe, who is now rumored to be the focus of legal action. The Telegram page of a grassroots group active in Wisconsin politics and election integrity efforts called 'H.O.T. Wisconsin' states the following across two posts:
"Megan Wolfe of the Wisconsin Election Commission [WEC] has stopped taking phone calls and answering emails. Callers are being referred to her attorney... Upon reliable sources, WEC Administrator Meagan Wolfe refused to stand in front of the Wisconsin election committee and has lawyered up... Sources close to the investigation stated that her resignation is more than likely forthcoming."
Wolfe attended the most recent WEC meeting on Sept. 9. She had previously testified at an informational hearing to the Assembly Committee on Campaigns and Elections regarding attempts to 'cure' absentee ballots in Green Bay and potentially illegal authority given to left-leaning groups and former Democratic operatives.
In his recent video, Justice Gableman does not provide specific details of what his team is investigating but explains why:
"Speaking about the internal workings of an ongoing investigation is reckless and irresponsible. It can put witnesses and whistleblowers at risk of retaliation, it can do unnecessary harm to reputational interests, and it can result in relevant information and evidence being destroyed or compromised. Some evidence has been produced previously that shows some election officials acted unilaterally in deciding not to follow established state law. We will request from those officials and others with potential knowledge about lawful actions and will compel them if necessary to produce documents and testimony that will allow the public to gain a comprehensive understanding of how their elections were managed."
The video statement from Justice Gableman goes on to address critics who say an investigation such as his is not warranted without evidence of fraud that impacted an election:
"The responsibility to demonstrate that our elections were conducted with fairness, inclusivity, and accountability is on the government and on the private, for-profit interests that did work for the government. The burden is not on the people to show in advance of an investigation that public officials and their contractors behaved dishonestly."