98th Assembly Seat Candidate's Divorce File Sealed After Claiming Discrimination

The divorce file of Jeanne Tarantino, former aide to Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch, has been sealed after it was revealed that she claimed gender discrimination while working in Kleefisch's office.

State 98th Assembly District candidate Jeanne Tarantino's divorce file has been sealed by a Waukesha County Circuit Judge after it was revealed that she claimed discrimination while employed in the Lt. Governor office, reported Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

The former Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch’s 2010 campaign manager said she was discriminated against and transferred last month from her state job because of her age and gender.

Tarantino said this while being questioned in December as part of legal dispute with her ex-husband.

Staffers from the Lt. Governor's office have denied the claim.

Kleefisch has endorsed Tarantino in her Assembly race. 

Tarantino will be running against four others for an open seat in the 98th Assembly District.  

Carroll University will host a forum, sponsored by Patch, for the five Republican candidates in the special primary election for the 98th Assembly District seat on Feb. 11 at the Carroll University Center for Graduate Studies.

Steve Edlund February 09, 2013 at 01:26 AM
Yes, the method by which the information was leaked is bad. What's worse is that not one of the other candidates publicly agree with you. A woman candidate gets assaulted by an unknown attacker in front of her school aged children and all the other candidates are simply bystanders who say and do nothing. Speaks to character? Had I ran for the 98th Assembly, I would have sent out a press release on day one condemning this scummy attack tactic by an unscrupulous individual against another candidate. What kind of a message are the adults sending to the children in our community? Bullying by any means is o.k. as long as nobody finds out who you are?
Luke February 09, 2013 at 01:50 AM
There's a very good chance the information was released by her former husband. Regardless, she is a public figure and should have known better. We are all better for having known this information.
Mr Lundt February 09, 2013 at 02:18 AM
Steve The info appears to be true. The truth and her reaction to the truth is inappropriate. At some point she has to stop hiding behind the messenger.
Keith Worst February 09, 2013 at 03:47 AM
Shameful remarks. Fact is she went against The Party and therefore we are obliged to make sure she is drummed out. Total victory and running all those who disagree out of the public discussion is top priority. Clearly if she will question governor Walker or any one person within the administration, she's unfit to call herself a fellow conservative or fit to hold office or to claim she's an actual republican.
Waukytalk February 09, 2013 at 03:51 AM
Got a copy of a JS online article from a lady friend. Article says in October 2006 Adam Baumann-Neylon age 21, cited for disorderly conduct and obstruction. Is this the same Adam Neylon that is running for office? If so, why would he change his name?
Steve Edlund February 09, 2013 at 12:42 PM
@Mr. Lundt The end never justifies the means. Here's my best guess of the election results. The male votes will be split between 4 silent bystanders. The female vote will support Jeanne Tarantino in raised opposition to dirty politics, sexism and an ugly divorce. I'm basing this on conversations I've had with female conservatives expressing to me concerns over the lack of diversity in the Republican Party of Waukesha County.
Beauman February 09, 2013 at 03:06 PM
Interesting that a candidate would change his name. Wouldn't name ID be important for such a time as this? Who's lying now?
Mr Lundt February 09, 2013 at 04:11 PM
Steve We agree the end never justifies the means. To date there is ZERO evidence of sexism. There is ONLY evidence that it was used as cover for a divorce proceeding. Watering down legitimate cases of sexism. Keep in mind NOT one person supports her claims including her own attorney. So the means used by Tarantino are inexcusable. If she has supporting evidence or makes a case---have at it. The fact that a few women claim that there is an issue of diversity does not make it so. I would love to see evidence...not "feelings" again that are unsubstantiated.
Steve Edlund February 09, 2013 at 04:35 PM
Carroll University recently suspended Beta Pi Epsilon fraternity citing "a record of disruptive conduct" and the inability to find an adviser. Perhaps a past president of the Greek fraternity would be willing to be that adviser? Credit: http://waukesha.patch.com/articles/carroll-suspends-beta-pi-epsilon-fraternity-indefinitely
Forester February 09, 2013 at 04:38 PM
Hiding behind the messenger? Tarantino has apologized. Why isn't anyone pointing out that the lawyers asked her "do you FEEL you were discriminated?" Feeling one way and having evidence of it are two entirely different things. Belling is accusing her of being a liar - I don't think feeling a certain way at the time is a lie. Anyone in her position who is let go from a high up job and replaced with a younger person of a different gender while being transferred to a lower paying position would probably question the motive! She never took action against them. She simply stated what she felt at the time.
Forester February 09, 2013 at 04:40 PM
Her attorney said she had no EVIDENCE of discrimination. Tarantino never claimed to have evidence, she was only answering how she FELT at the time.
Forester February 09, 2013 at 04:42 PM
You're entirely incorrect. She did address this, she apologized. Considering this is an on-going (and sealed) divorce case, assuming that persons involved are bound by confidentiality agreements, I highly doubt she's able to respond much more than that.
Steve Edlund February 09, 2013 at 04:47 PM
@Mr Lundt, Hey, I'm just parroting what women voters shared with me. That's the perception. Whether you agree with it or not, the tactic of releasing a personal family divorce proceeding to cause harm to the only female candidate probably amplified that perception. The male candidates have done nothing to improve the sexism image by keeping silent. That's my opinion.
Karen34 February 09, 2013 at 05:49 PM
After reading the article and then all these comments, well, why don't we just call this what it is? A blatant attack against the clear-cut front-runner in the 98th Assembly race. This should be a campaign about who is the best candidate. Not about what gender they are, but who is most qualified. In my opinion, this is Jeanne Tarantino. Not because she is a woman but because of her experience in government, her grasp of the issues most important to Waukesha County, and the fact that, despite this deposition leaking, Lt. Gov. Kleefisch still chose to endorse Tarantino. If that doesn’t speak for Tarantino’s character, I don’t know what does. The real question we should be asking is who leaked the information from a private divorce deposition at such an opportune time?
Luke February 10, 2013 at 06:22 PM
@Karen Yes, it is about who the best candidate is, which is exactly why we should take her comments and her refusal to directly answer questions concerning them into account.
Luke February 10, 2013 at 06:24 PM
@Forester On the contrary, if you read the transcript, Tarantino volunteered the information that they wanted someone that was younger and a male. That alone is an accusation of discrimination. Tarantino was then asked if she felt discriminated against. The attorney was asking her what her opinion was, not inquiring about her emotional state. Tarantino understood the question exactly as I have described, as evidenced by the the lengthy description she gave as to how older women are typically demoted and given less important jobs as a way of discriminating against them in favor of younger males. I think it's time to put this issue to rest.
Forester February 10, 2013 at 06:45 PM
@Luke...what transcript? As far as I know no transcript of the deposition has been released to the public.
Luke February 10, 2013 at 06:53 PM
@Forester No, until recently it was viewable online. In addition, excerpts are in JSOnline, and both Mark Belling and Charlie Sykes read the entire section in question over the air.
Forester February 10, 2013 at 06:55 PM
@Luke you are incorrect. The deposition was never available online. If you read Jessica McBride's column in the Freeman, it was never available to the public PERIOD. And Belling read parts of Bice's article, which took partial quotes from various areas of the deposition - typical Bice. No one read the deposition.
Luke February 10, 2013 at 07:02 PM
@forester Here us the article with direct quotes. http://www.jsonline.com/blogs/news/188389991.html
Forester February 10, 2013 at 07:06 PM
@Luke those are excerpts and partial quotes. You can't make judgements without seeing the entire thing in context IMO.
Luke February 10, 2013 at 07:29 PM
@Forester, As I already said, I've heard the entire section read over the air a number of times from different sources. In addition, Tarantino herself does not deny my interpretation, so I find it odd that you disagree with me and Tarantino.
Karen34 February 10, 2013 at 08:00 PM
@Luke I am glad we agree on that aspect. However, Jeanne did issue an apology and said that she regretted making those statements as soon as she said them. What questions has she been refusing to answer? Again, the release of the deposition at this time seems to reek of dirty politics to me. Yes, Jeanne misspoke during a private deposition in a personal matter, but whoever released that deposition acted with intention, publicly, and, if I'm not mistaken, illegally. This seems to be a far greater transgression.
Luke February 10, 2013 at 08:28 PM
@Karen, Yes, she did apologize for saying those things, but she did not retract them or say that they were false. That is sort of like a coworker finding out that I said that he is stupid, and then apologizing for what I said. By doing so, I cannot possibly mean that I have changed my opinion of him; rather, I am saying that I should not have said those things. A number of people have asked Tarantino if what she said is false. Simply saying that she is sorry dies not answer the question. Either she lied under oath or she still claims that she was discriminated against. Finally, the deposition was not sealed until a couple days ago. That is why people have been able to get copies. That's all there is to it.
ImConservative February 11, 2013 at 11:45 PM
It is too bad that the evidence was not cited anywhere... what evidence? She was replaced by a youngster, Casey Himebauch. He is one of those model-types and is good friends with none other than Scott Walker himself. In fact, he went straight from Walker's office to Kleefisch's. By his own admission, he cannot stand Kleefisch. Something really stinks about that. I think Walker had a hard time with two strong, conservative women who probably didn't faint at the very sight of him. NO ONE EVER said that Becky fired Tarantino. That is because she isn't the one who did it. Doh!
barium February 11, 2013 at 11:55 PM
No, Karen, that isn't what we should call it. It's called lying under oath. Either Jeanne Tarantino stands up like a leader and addresses what she did, or she isn't qualified for the office. If she comes clean to acknowledge her lie and why she did it, along with answer why she supported/worked for liberal Democrats in the past (Levin, Moore, etc.), it is up to voters to decide if she's fit to serve and really represents them.
barium February 12, 2013 at 12:09 AM
What? Now we're calling exposing "lying under oath" as bullying? So the liar is now the victim?
barium February 12, 2013 at 01:02 AM
Setting aside your veiled, vicious, and vacuous attacks and negative innuendo on the Governor, it's important to stick to facts and what we know. Ironically, even as you write about "evidence," you cite no evidence and spout opinions and hearsay. The fact that Tarantino lied under oath and hasn't adequately explained this is the problem.
Luke February 12, 2013 at 01:35 AM
@ImaCon Your tin hat is on too tight.
barium February 12, 2013 at 04:54 AM
Wow. Great contribution to the discussion, "conservative" ImaCon. LOL Thanks for the thoughtful, contemplative remark. All you true conservatives out there - let's avoid hypocrisy here by holding Tarantino's feet to the fire - as we would any other politician who committed perjury - to reject her candidacy unless there is true honesty and candor from her.


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