Conspiracy theorists are in full force with a Democratic congresswoman even asking the United States Attorney General to investigate the Waukesha County election returns that gave the Supreme Court race to David Prosser, but they might want to call up Arianna Huffington first. That’s because Patch, a new media site in Brookfield that Huffington oversees, reported the Brookfield election returns to the public... on election night.
And they were the same returns the city is reporting now that Waukesha County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus has finally added Brookfield into the countywide returns. That means there’s no big conspiracy – Nickolaus just didn’t pass the returns on to the state and Associated Press on election night as she should have done. No returns or votes “materialized” – they were reported on election night by a site overseen by one of the most prominent liberals in the country.
The AP distributed the overall county tally to the rest of the news media for inclusion in state totals on election night.
However, the Brookfield clerk has stated
that she reported the returns to Nickolaus, who didn’t save them on her computer.
The Brookfield clerk ALSO reported the returns on election night to the reporter for Brookfield Patch, the new online news site run by AOL, and ultimately overseen by liberal pundit Arianna Huffington. Patch ran a story shortly after midnight that night reporting that Prosser had commanded a sweeping margin in Brookfield.
The reporter who authored the story is Brookfield Patch editor, Lisa Sink, a former Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reporter. She reported on the returns in a story dated April 6th (two full days before Waukesha County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus told the media and state officials that she had forgotten to include the Brookfield returns in the overall county tally).
“As expected, Brookfield city voters ran up a good turnout in the state Supreme Court race and gave incumbent Justice David Prosser nearly 11,000 votes.
Unofficial, unaudited results showed 76 percent of city residents who voted picked Prosser, with 24 percent voting for challenger JoAnne Kloppenburg.
That translated to a city voting turnout of about 53 percent, the city's second-highest for a spring election since 2001, but nowhere near the 79 percent turnout for the gubernatorial race last November.”
The story was headlined: Brookfield Gives Prosser Nearly 11K Votes: Incumbent State Supreme Court Justice David Prosser gets 10,859 votes from city residents or 76 percent against JoAnne Kloppenburg. (Note: The City of Brookfield website currently reports
the same exact numbers.)
The Patch story also included a ward-by-ward breakdown of the Brookfield election returns that included the final tally for the city for both candidates.
In the comment thread under the story, reporter Sink noted a few days later: “I posted this article and chart at 12:24 a.m. on election night, using data handed to me from the City of Brookfield clerk's office, not from Waukesha County. Lots of confusion about this. This came straight from the city ON election night. These are the results County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus said today that she failed to properly save and include in the countywide total she released to AP on election night.”
Arianna Huffington is Sink’s ultimate boss. Huffington moved over to head a Media Group at AOL this spring after AOL bought out her liberal political website
, the Huffington Post. The move has Huffington overseeing the hyper-local Patch news sites that the company launched around the country. This year Patch launched multiple news sites in the Milwaukee metropolitan area, hiring an editor away from Journal Communications to oversee them. Most of the sites are managed by former newspaper journalists and are meant to be objective news sites.
The Hollywood Reporter quotes Huffington as saying the following of Patch:
“... Patch will be key to political coverage, including next year's elections. We're launching over 30 new patches in primary states,’ including two new ones in New York.” Each Patch consists of a professional journalist and contributors.
Ironically, the wildly liberal Huffington Post updated its own story
on the Waukesha election returns after receiving the information about the Brookfield Patch story.
The original Huffington Post story was updated to note: “UPDATE: 11:20 p.m. -- Perhaps the most convincing evidence so far that human error explains the initial omission of Brookfield's results comes from our colleagues at the Brookfield Patch. On election night, they reported a vote total for Brookfield that exactly matches the vote total Nickolaus did not include in the County level count until Thursday.”
In other words, even the extremely liberal Huffington Post can’t bring itself to join the conspiracy brigades. Not when its own news site had the returns from the start.