With this post, Ethics Alarms launches a special limited series, “How Can People Consider Voting For Candidates This Unethical?” or HCPCVFCTU for short. My goal will be to have approximately equal numbers of Democrats and Republicans named by election day. It should not be hard. Please send your nominations and suggestions to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The first candidate in the series: Wisconsin Democratic gubernatorial candidate Mary Burke.
A substantial portion of Wisconsin Democratic gubernatorial candidate Mary Burke’s published jobs plan for Wisconsin was lifted directly from the plans of three earlier Democratic candidates for governor in other states
Burke’s economic plan “Invest for Success” includes virtually word for word sections from the jobs plans of Ward Cammack, who ran for Tennessee governor in 2009, Delaware Gov. Jack Markell (in 2008) and John Gregg who unsuccessfully ran for governor of Indiana in 2012. Buzzfeed has links to all of these, as well as Burke’s plan that uses them all.
Burke is blaming a campaign consultant, now fired, named Eric Schnurer. Apparently he also worked on the other campaigns, and engaged in self-plagiarism. Nevertheless, this is a pathetic excuse, and doesn’t relieve the candidate of full responsibility for trying to foist a phony plan on constituents:
- This is supposed to be her plan, not a consultant’s off-the-shelf retreads.
- Obviously, if it is substantially based on what was proposed for other states in plans as much as six years old, the “plan” has little to do with Wisconsin’s particular needs in 2014.
- The “plan” proves that Mary Burke gave no thought to an important part of what she is allegedly running to accomplish in Wisconsin, and just rubber stamped something that sounded good by campaign fudging standards.
- Is this the kind of employee Burke hires? Fakers and cheats? Is this the sort of oversight she provides? None? What is she doing, planning on running for President? Is this how much the public can trust her to be serious, substantive, attentive and trustworthy? Not one bit? It would seem so.
- Then, when she is caught at being lazy, careless, dishonest, superficial and deceptive, Burke’s response is to deny responsibility, and blame someone else because she put her name on a stolen, recycled, vague and superficial “plan.”
How Can People Consider Voting For Candidates This Unethical?