Third attack ad vs. Tony Evers in teacher porn has some of the same problems

Gov. Scott Walker, like the state Republican Party, has criticized state schools superintendent Tony Evers in a teacher porn case. Walker and Evers face off in the general election on Nov. 6, 2018.
Gov. Scott Walker, like the state Republican Party, has criticized state schools superintendent Tony Evers in a teacher porn case. Walker and Evers face off in the general election on Nov. 6, 2018.

On Aug. 15, 2018, the day after Tony Evers won the Democratic nomination for governor, the Wisconsin Republican Party targeted him in a TV ad.

It’s a familiar attack.

In fact, we’ve already rated two similar attacks the GOP made against Evers on the same subject  — neither of which did well on the Truth-O-Meter.

The claims against Evers, the state schools superintendent, are about a case involving a Madison-area middle school teacher viewing pornography at school.

The new ad emphasizes, again, that Evers did not move to revoke the teacher’s license. It ends with the narrator stating: "As superintendent of public instruction, Tony Evers is supposed to keep our children safe. But he didn’t."

(Also the day after the primaries, GOP Gov. Scott Walker, who will face Evers in the November general election, claimed Evers "fell back on some bureaucratic excuse" in not trying to revoke the teacher’s license.)

Let’s review what we know from the previous fact checks on the GOP  — one rated Mostly False and one rated Half True.

  • The teacher did share images of nudity and in at least one instance forwarded an email containing such images that he received on his school computer. The teacher was fired.

  • A state arbitrator gave the teacher his job back, saying his behavior did not meet the state law’s definition of immoral conduct because "there was no endangerment of the health, safety, welfare or education of any pupil." The decision was upheld by two courts.

  • Evers’ department, citing the state law requiring that kids be endangered, decided not to try to revoke the teacher’s license.

  • Evers and Walker later supported a change in state law that removed the endangerment clause  — meaning, a teacher’s license could now be revoked for viewing pornography at school.

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