An Indiana prosecutor and Republican activist has resigned after emails show he suggested Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker stage a fake attack on himself to discredit unions protesting his budget repair bill.
The Republican governor signed a bill on March 11 that eliminates most union rights for public employees.
In an email from February 19, Indiana deputy prosecutor Carlos F. Lam told Walker the situation presented "a good opportunity for what’s called a ‘false flag’ operation."
The Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism discovered the email among tens of thousands released to the public last week following a lawsuit by the Isthmus and the Associated Press.
"If you could employ an associate who pretends to be sympathetic to the unions' cause to physically attack you (or even use a firearm against you), you could discredit the unions," Lam said in his email.
"Currently, the media is painting the union protest as a democratic uprising and failing to mention the role of the DNC and umbrella union organizations in the protest," he continued. "Employing a false flag operation would assist in undercutting any support that the media may be creating in favor of the unions."
Lam resigned from his position after the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism published an article about his email.
On February 22, an alternative paper in Buffalo, New York managed to trick Walker into taking a call from their editor posing as tea party tycoon David Koch.
When the editor posing as Koch suggested planting some troublemakers in the protests, Walker responded that "we thought about that," but said it was not necessary "because sooner or later the media stops finding ’em interesting."
"My only fear would be is if there was a ruckus caused is that that would scare the public into thinking maybe the governor has gotta settle to avoid all these problems," he said.
Walker had promised to lay off 1,500 state workers if the bill to curb collective bargaining rights for public employees didn't pass.
In mid-February, 14 Democratic state senators left Wisconsin to stall a vote on the bill. There are 19 Republican senators, but the Senate needs a minimum of 20 members to be present to debate and vote on any bills that spend money.
While the 14 Democratic senators remained in Illinois, Republican state senators removed all references to spending from the bill and passed the proposal to limit public employees' collective bargaining rights.
Wisconsin citizens upset withWalker's attack on public employees' collective bargaining rights have launched a boycott campaign aimed at his campaign contributors.