Hudson City Hall

Hudson Common Council member Joyce Hall is facing an ethics complaint filed by the former St. Croix County Republican Party chairman who resigned from his post following what Hall called “a call to violence” on the county party’s website.

John Kraft filed an ethics complaint against Hall after she asked the council to not appoint him as an election poll worker.. Her request came at a December council meeting. The council went ahead and approved Kraft as a poll worker.

Last January, following the insurrection in the U.S. Capitol, Kraft made a post on the St. Croix County Republican Party website that read in part: “If you want peace, prepare for war. … It is time to stand and be counted as a conservative warrior in the ongoing fight to preserve our Constitutional Republic. We need to start local by removing leftist tyrants from all local and County positions in the future April elections.”

Hall contended that the post and other actions made Kraft unfit to be an elections worker.

Kraft’s complaint was sent to the council’s Finance Committee, which retained attorney Lida Bannink to investigate the complaint.

The Finance Committee will meet Jan. 13 to review Bannink’s 10-page report on her investigation. 

“The Finance Committee must determine whether Halls statements challenging Kraft’s nomination as a poll worker do in fact violate (the city’s Ethics Code),” City Attorney Nicholas Vivian wrote in a letter transmitting the report to the council. “If Hall’s statements do not violate the Code, and if Hall was acting in furtherance of her responsibility to ‘demonstrate good cause’ supporting the non-appointment of Kraft as a poll worker under Wisconsin law based on his past statements and actions, the Complaint should be recommended to the Common Council for dismissal.”

The city attorney continued that if the committee found that the complaint was justified “it is appropriate for the Finance Committee to recommend a written censure or resolution admonishing Hall to the Common Council …”

At the council meeting Jan. 4, numerous Hudson residents spoke to support Hall. The comments sometimes became contentious as the city attorney cut off the speakers if they mentioned John Kraft due to the pending investigation. One speaker shouted an expletive and flipped off the council.

(1) comment

Cheryl Johnson

I, for one support and appreciate Councilwoman Hall’s strength and character by voicing her concerns at the meeting. She was upholding the Ethics requirement “…that public interest must be the prime concern”. She was reminding the committee of Mr. Kraft’s position on democracy as detailed by his own words/writings. I believe this should be a consideration whenever selecting workers for the election polls. I would like to know I can cast my vote without intimidation, perceived or otherwise, by those who are there to represent the election process. One that has been sorely jeopardized by grift.

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