Wisconsin Democracy Campaign Blasts Walker’s Pick for High Court

“Walker loads the dice for next spring’s election, and adds only more partisanship to an already hyper-partisan Court.”

October 12, 2015

Madison – A good government group in Madison blasted Gov. Scott Walker for appointing Judge Rebecca Bradley to an interim seat on the State Supreme Court. Bradley is set to fill out the term of Justice Patrick Crooks, who died tragically on September 21.

“By picking Bradley, Walker loads the dice for the open seat in next spring’s election, and adds only more partisanship to an already hyper-partisan Court,” Rothschild said. “Walker should have appointed someone who is not a candidate for this position. There were many qualified people available, including former justices on the Court.”

“Alternatively, he could have simply left the seat open until the voters made their choice next April,” Rothschild said. “The Court is already divided 4-2 with the conservatives in the majority. Leaving it open wouldn’t have gummed up the workings of the Court or affected the outcome of most cases.”

“But by picking Rebecca Bradley, Walker has given her an undue advantage as a sitting justice,” Rothschild said. “With the election so near, this creates an unfair playing field.”

“And by picking Rebecca Bradley, a darling of conservatives, Walker is making the State Supreme Court even more of a hyper-partisan hothouse than it is already,” Rothschild said.

Rothschild pointed out that Rebecca Bradley received funding when she ran for judge on the circuit court in 2013 from the chairman of Walker’s presidential campaign, Michael W. Grebe of the Bradley Foundation, who gave her $3,000. And she received $2,000 from George and Susan Mitchell , longtime advocates of the state’s school voucher program.

The Wisconsin Democracy Campaign was one of four good government groups that signed a letter on Sept. 28 urging Walker not to appoint someone to the State Supreme Court who is running for a spot on that court already. The other three groups that signed the letter are Common Cause in Wisconsin, the League of Women Voters of Wisconsin, and Wisconsin Voices.