In the News: Barnes Lies About Law Enforcement Endorsement

OSHKOSH  – On Monday, Wisconsin Right Now broke the story that Mandela Barnes has been lying about a La Crosse law enforcement officer endorsing his campaign. Other outlets throughout Wisconsin were quick to pick up the news. Barnes is already running one of the most anti-public safety campaigns in the country – supporting the end of cash bail, cutting the prison population by half, abolishing ICE, and defunding the police.

Check out these stories on Barnes’ endorsement lies: 

From the Associated Press: Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Mandela Barnes’ campaign is blaming a “clerical error” for listing a La Crosse County Sheriff’s Department captain as one of nine endorsements from law enforcement officers when the officer did not, in fact, back Barnes… On Monday, the conservative website Wisconsin Right Now reported an interview with Seigel in which he said he never endorsed Barnes.

From Channel 3000: Capt. John Siegel, who is also running as a Democrat for La Crosse County Sheriff, said he found out Friday that his name was among the list of endorsers. “I called immediately — whoever I could get a hold of, and finally got a hold of somebody operating their campaign and said, ‘Hey, I didn’t ever agree to put my name on anything or be added to a list,’” Siegel said in a call with News 3 Now.

From Wisconsin Public Radio: Republican U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson’s campaign issued a statement Monday, accusing Barnes of faking “at least one of the names on his endorsements list.”  “Mandela Barnes has been lying about his positions and now he’s lying about who supports him,” said Johnson spokesperson Alec Zimmerman. “This election is about who you can trust.” 

From Wisconsin Right Now: Only two of those 9 names, including Siegel’s, were active duty officers. The other seven were retired or former officers. Barnes has now issued an expanded law enforcement endorsement list with a total of 15 names. Siegel’s name no longer shows up. But it still appears on the first press release on sites that picked it up.

There are 13,400 active-duty officers statewide.