In an editorial today the Tomah Journal highlights a case that came before the Wisconsin Supreme Court last week. The case involved the family of a three-year-old boy suffering from brain cancer and a large HMO. The same day that the court slapped fellow Justice Annette Ziegler on the wrist for her willful violation of ethics rules, the court narrowly ruled for the family of the young boy. In a surprise to no one Ziegler dissented favoring the corporation.
The editorial reminds its readers that the state’s corporate lobby, Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce (WMC), spent unprecedented millions on her campaign. Even in the midst of facing a Judicial Conduct Panel last year over her conflicts, she still refused to step off a case involving her benefactors at WMC. It should be no surprise that she ruled against the young boy and his family and for the big corporate interests.
If WMC’s latest empty suit, Michael Gableman, were sitting in the seat that WMC helped purchase, it is very clear that this decision would have been equally close but would have ended with the opposite result. WMC is obviously not interested in close decisions. If they are going to invest so many unprecedented millions into their rubber stamps, they want to know that the decisions will go their way. It appears that they are already starting to set up the same drill for next year’s race for Supreme Court, in which they will be trying to unseat yet another incumbent.
The Tomah Journal wonders if decisions like Ziegler’s is a sign of things to come on the high court once WMC gets their corporate majority. They correctly suggest that we should ‘Savor this decision because it may be one of the last times a consumer wins against a corporation before the Wisconsin Supreme Court.’