Goon Squad in Action… Barrett Thugs Escort Conservative Reporter From Rally

You can’t handle the truth!

‘Al,’ the big guy wearing red in the center, and two other enforcers stand guard at an event for Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett. (Will Swaim)

Wiscsonsin Democrat gubernatorial candidate Tom Barrett escorted a conservative reporter from Chippewa Falls rally this weekend.

When the Reagan administration barred critical news media from White House press conferences, liberals quite rightly protested. So where is liberal outrage now that gubernatorial candidate Tom  Barrett has blocked a reporter from his public events?

Four male Barrett campaign staffers escorted Wisconsin Reporter’s Dustin Hurst from a Chippewa Falls rally for Barrett, the Democrat hoping to oust Republican Gov. Scott Walker in Tuesday’s Wisconsin recall vote.

Hurst is the Wisconsin Reporter journalist who caught on tape the arrest of a pro-Walker protester at a June 1 Barrett rally featuring former President Bill Clinton.

But limiting Hurst’s access to the Barrett campaign was more likely a reprisal for Hurst’s reports (here and here), earlier that day, revealing that Barrett, Milwaukee’s mayor, hired a convicted felon to work in his administration. That poor hiring decision wouldn’t be newsworthy except for the fact that Barrett has accused his Republican rival of employing a staffer charged — not yet convicted, mind you — of committing a felony.

Barrett’s ties to felons doesn’t end there, as Hurst points out in a June 2 story. Politifact, an online political fact-checking titan franchise of the Tampa Bay Times in St. Petersburg, Fla., found that a former Barrett secretary, Joseph N. Cantu, was charged with two felonies and a misdemeanor in connection with a 2010 assault. Reports say Cantu was accused of suffocating his girlfriend.

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