OWN Files Complaint With Judicial Commission

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One Wisconsin Now will file a formal request with the Wisconsin Judicial Commission to investigate state Supreme Court candidate Mike Gableman for violations of the Judicial Code for intentionally misrepresenting the record of his opponent.

The Gableman campaign has repeatedly misrepresented the record of his opponent in violation of the Judicial Code. OWN hopes the Commission will act to stop this serious breach of the public trust by Mike Gableman’s campaign.

Gableman’s campaign has now put out at least two negative pieces and has repeated in the media and at public appearances untrue charges about the case of State v. Richard A. Brown (Milwaukee County Case # 1995CF950507). One piece claims Gableman’s opponent “provided the deciding vote to overturn a sexual predator decision by a circuit court, resulting in the release of the predator into Milwaukee County.” A second piece uses similar language. [Gableman Fundraising Letter from Margaret Farrow; Gableman Law Enforcement Solicitation]

The Wisconsin Department of Corrections and the media have confirmed Richard Brown was never released into Milwaukee County. Brown has remained incarcerated and is at the Sand Ridge facility in Juneau County for sexual offenders, in full state custody and is absolutely not on the street – the opposite of what Gableman’s campaign claims.

According to the Wisconsin State Journal, a Wisconsin Corrections spokesperson confirmed Brown’s address has remained constant at Sand Ridge since 2001. This fact is confirmed by the state’s sex offender registry website. [Wisconsin State Journal, 2/17/08; Wisconsin Department of Correction, Sex Offender Registry]

The Wisconsin Judicial Code is clear that misrepresenting your opponent’s actions or position is a serious violation. This is just another in a series of unsettling facts surrounding both Gableman and the actions of his campaign.

 According to the Wisconsin Judicial Code:

60.06(3)(c): “Misrepresentations. A candidate for a judicial office shall not knowingly or with reckless disregard for the statement’s truth or falsity misrepresent the identity, qualifications, present position, or other fact concerning the candidate or an opponent. A candidate for judicial office should not knowingly make representations that, although true, are misleading, or knowingly make statements that are likely to confuse the public with respect to the proper role of judges and lawyers in the American adversary system.”

 All of this is opposite of what Gableman promised in his answers to the Wisconsin League of Women Voters, when he vowed “my campaign will not resort to dishonest attack ads.” “What I can control is my own campaign. Wisconsinites can be sure my campaign will not resort to dishonest attack ads. We will instead remain focused on the honest differences between my opponent, who is a good man, and me so that voters can make a fair and informed choice on April 1.” [League of Women Voters 2008 Spring Guide]

Despite the public attention and notice of Brown’s continued confinement, Gableman repeated and has refused to back down from his false claim, prompting One Wisconsin Now’s most recent action.

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