Friday, April 11, 2008

Thanks a lot, WMC!

By Ed Garvey
Google+ Pinterest Print
James Sample of the New York based non-partisan Brennan Center for Justice concludes, "After consecutive years of special interest dominance, and the addition of a Willie Horton ad, perceptions of Wisconsin's judiciary have suffered a real hit. The Wisconsin campaign turned into a shameful race to the bottom." Our nasty secret is out! The nation knows we are no longer the state of Bob La Follette, Gaylord and Prox. Let's pledge that this will be a temporary condition. How can we thank Jim Haney and the WMC Board for destroying our reputation?

The Brennan Center joins the chorus of FightingBob.com, the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign, and all members of the Court in calling for full public funding of court races and a "strong electioneering communications law that would bring greater accountability to third party groups running TV advertising." Amen, amen.

WMC spent $1,232,000 on shameful TV spots added to right-wing front groups, Wisconsin Club for Growth ($443,000), and the Coalition for American Families ($381,881). Eighty-nine percent of TV spending on the Gableman-Butler race came from outside interest groups. That is unacceptable.

We must act. I'm pleased that several lawyers have responded to my article calling on lawyers to action. I'm reminded of the RFK quote, "All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good people to remain silent." Silent we will not remain! We begin with a meeting next week to map strategy for reform. We will respond to former Justice Edward Ryan's question: "Which shall lead, money or intellect?"

Public funding is the first step.
Log in to use your Facebook account with
Express Milwaukee

Login With Facebook Account