A Wisconsin organization is allegedly urging voters to sign recall petitions for Gov. Scott Walker with the name "Adolf Hitler" to send a message about jobs.
The Wisconsin Government Accountability Board has asked the Milwaukee County District Attorney to investigate the group "Mines for Wisconsin," which it said sent a letter telling voters who oppose the recall effort to sign petitions for it with Hitler's name, local Fox affiliate WITI-TV reported. The G.A.B. is overseeing the recall effort against the Republican governor, which kicked off last month.
According to a letter posted online purportedly from the group, voters are encouraged to sign petitions, "Adolf Hitler, 666 Hell Street (your city)."
"The recall people don't want thousands of high-paying jobs in the mining industry in northern Wisconsin," the letter says. "By signing Hitler's name you are sending a message to the recall people who oppose jobs for Wisconsin residents. Many of these potential jobs would be union positions."
"Hitler was willing to destroy Germany in order to get his ideals in place. This is similar to what the recall people are doing in Wisconsin," it says.
The group did not respond to requests for comment from WITI.
Though the letter says it's not illegal to sign "Adolf Hitler" on a petition, Government Accountability Spokesman Reid Magney said that's not the case. He told the Wisconsin Radio Network it's against the law to knowingly falsify a name on a recall petition.
"Anyone who falsifies a petition can face felony charges punishable by up to three and a half years in prison and up to $10,000 in fines," Magney said.
Reports of the letter come one week after the board said it would not automatically strike blatantly fraudulent petition signatures with the names "Adolf Hitler" or "Mickey Mouse." Instead, it's up to the officeholder being targeted for recall to flag suspicious or duplicate names and request they be removed.
Recall organizers must collect 540,208 signatures by Jan. 17 in order to force an election sometime in 2012.
According to the Wisconsin State Journal, the state's Republican Party said it does not condone or support any "foul play" in the recall effort.