This disagreement among Democrats puts the Mike Tate and the party apparatus in a lurch. In a Cap Times piece on Wednesday lamenting the fact that more Democrats don't support the Singers, the Democratic Party of Wisconsin spokeswoman tried to boost Mike Tate's liberal bona fides by saying he has personally donated to the Solidarity Sing Along legal defense fund.
"We've done messaging on this, to include posts on Facebook and Twitter, as well as an email blast from (state Democratic Party Chairman Mike Tate) supporting the singers," says Democratic Party spokeswoman Melissa Baldauff. "I should also note that Mike personally has made a contribution to the Solidarity Sing Along legal defense fund."
The fund, called the First Amendment Protection Fund, was set up to help singers fight some 300 – and counting – citations and charges for participating in the singalong. After writing in a Facebook post, "I fear entering the building for risk I may be led away in handcuffs and charged with a crime," Tate was publicly challenged to pledge $50 to the fund by a protester.
Some Democrats have moved on, rightfully seeing the Solidarity Singers as hangers on who are doing more damage than good. But Tate needs these radicals, hence his walk along the tightrope where he tries to raise money off of them, and when challenged, tosses a few bucks to their legal defense fund.
When push comes to shove, Mike Tate is willing to throw in his lot with the lawbreakers.