Wisconsin Democratic gubernatorial hopeful, Brett Hulsey, is known for his antics and constantly trying to shake things up. With few campaign funds and little support from party leadership, sources say Hulsey had to get creative when looking for a way to draw attention to his bid for governor. However, some people think he may have taken things a bit too far when he said he planned to dress up as a confederate soldier during the Wisconsin GOP convention held in Milwaukee this weekend, distributing KKK hoods to Republicans who would be in attendance.
According to sources, Hulsey spoke about his latest stunt saying he wanted to bring awareness to a few different political perspectives, one being a resolution that is supported by a number of fringe members of the party to support Wisconsin’s right to secede from the union. In addition, he wanted to highlight a number of GOP polices he believes are geared toward weakening minority communities, such as the policy that requires voters to present photo ID and the policy that makes it harder to force schools to remove mascots that are Native American themed.
On Thursday, while in the state Capitol press room, Hulsey showed off the homemade KKK lookalike hoods. He said he had made them himself using his daughter’s sewing machine and cheap curtain material he had purchased for one dollar.
Hulsey was looking for media attention when he announced his plan to distribute KKK lookalike hoods over the weekend during the Wisconsin GOP convention. However, the media was not the only one to take notice of Hulsey’s stunt. In fact, he admitted to receiving threatening phone calls and hate mail following the announcement of his convention plans.
According to sources, Hulsey did not give out KKK lookalike hoods during the convention on Friday. Instead, he said his plan all along was simply to draw attention from various media outlets to his campaign for governor. However, from the looks of it, his latest stunt may have done more to hurt his campaign than to help it.
Republicans and democrats alike have pulled back, distancing themselves from Hulsey and his outlandish behavior over the past few weeks. Chair of the Wisconsin Democratic Party, Mike Tate, said behavior such as handing out KKK hoods simply had no place at the convention. In addition, chair of the state GOP’s black caucus, Gerald Randall, said Hulsey’s reprehensible stunt had done nothing but bring dishonor upon himself.
Even though Hulsey did not distribute KKK lookalike hoods when he arrived at the Wisconsin GOP convention on Friday, he did however dress in a homemade confederate soldier’s outfit. All he carried with him was two signs, one with his name on it and the other with a list of Republican policies that he thinks are racist. While Hulsey said he did in fact make the KKK hoods and had brought them to the convention with him, he had decided to leave them in the car for fear it would be a bit over the top to hand them out to people.
By Donna W. Martin