Friday, April 14, 2006

Not Enough!

Not upfront enough. Not open enough.

That’s our take on a nearly year-old group called Enough! that was formed to oppose additional off-reservation casinos in Wisconsin. The group’s executive director, Brian Nemoir, has refused to identify the group’s members and funding sources. The State Ethics Board feels they are not legally required to do so.

Here’s what we do know about the group and its chief. Nemoir said in January the group has about 300 member organizations and individuals. Our guess is a lot of them are restaurants, taverns and others in the tourism industry which has had a longstanding beef over how Indian gambling hurts their pocketbooks.

Last year the group spent $165,366 on three lobbyists – an ex-Republican state senator and two aides to former GOP Governor Tommy Thompson – to push a bill that would require legislative approval of Indian gaming compacts. The governor now has the lone authority to do so.

Curious thing – the group spent 161 hours lobbying in the first half of 2005 and 243 hours in the last six months of the year, but their costs dropped from $87,500 to $77,866.

The proposal, Assembly Bill 461, has been stuck in the Senate for five months with two weeks to go before it dies, but Doyle, whose 2002 election campaign benefited from $700,000 worth of contributions by three tribes, has said he opposes it.

Nemoir is an Oconomowoc resident and former state GOP party official who runs a business called Full Impact Communications. Nemoir is also a campaign consultant whose latest client, Republican Representative Ann Nischke, should have been a slam-dunk winner in the mayoral race in heavily Republican Waukesha. She outspent her Democratic opponent 3-to-1, with more than a third of it going to Nemoir who charged the campaign $12,450 for printing, postage, design and automated telephone messages.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The Potawatomi and Diamond Jo casino in Dubuque, Iowa are among those funding Enough! They both want to stop the Menominee's Kenosha casino.