wisconsin capitol
Press Release
October 5, 2015

Gov. Scott Walker Previews More Partisanship on State High Court With Plot to Appoint Political Crony to Open Judicial Seat

Even State Supreme Court Not Safe From Taint of Walker’s Cronyism, Corruption and Incompetence

MADISON, Wis. — Gov. Scott Walker appears set to add to his record of cronyism, corruption and incompetence with the appointment of his political crony, Rebecca Bradley, to yet another judicial post, time a seat on the state’s high court. Bradley has been appointed by Walker to both of the seats she has held in her brief career as a judge and is an announced candidate for the Spring 2016 Wisconsin Supreme Court seat to which Walker appears poised to appoint her.

One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross commented, “Even the state high court does not appear to be safe from the taint of the cronyism, corruption and incompetence of Gov. Walker. Our State Supreme Court ought to be a body of independent jurists, not handpicked political cronies.”

In a series of social media posts, Walker apparently revealed his intentions to appoint already announced candidate for the State Supreme Court Rebecca Bradley by referencing previous appointees to the high court who later went on to stand for election to the court. Retired State Supreme Court Justice Janine Geske, appointed by Republican Gov. Tommy Thompson, pointed out the flaw in Walker’s logic in a weekend media appearance, noting she was not an announced candidate at the time of her appointment.

Bradley is closely tied to Walker and his political machine, having been appointed by Walker to the only judicial posts she has held. Her 2013 election bid to the Milwaukee County seat she was appointed to was overseen by a Walker administration aide and her campaign chair was none other than Michael Grebe, head of the right wing Bradley Foundation and chair of Walker’s gubernatorial and presidential campaigns.

“So Scott Walker is going to handpick his candidate Rebecca Bradley for the high court and then she’s off on the campaign trail instead of focusing on learning how to be a justice? As this year has already shown, that was a terrible deal for Wisconsin taxpayers, who were paying him to do his job, not campaign for another political office,” Ross added.

Walker and his allies have spent an estimated $10 million in recent years to elect a majority block of right wing justices to the state Supreme Court and even rammed through a change to the state constitution to change how the court’s chief justice is selected in order to install someone allied with their interests.

He concluded, “With Scott Walker it’s always about unbridled partisan politics, the next election and making state government work for him and his cronies and campaign contributors. Now he appears to be determined to further undermine the independence of the state high court by selecting his crony to fill an open seat to give them a leg up in the April 2016 election.”

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One Wisconsin Now is a statewide communications network specializing in effective earned media and online organizing to advance progressive leadership and values.

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