Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Two Wisconsin Courts Going In Different Directions

Federal Judge J. P. Stadtmueller - - a Reagan appointee to the bench in Milwaukee, by the way - - ripped GOP legislators and attorneys for their secrecy.

He was commenting on how the Legislature conducted its recent redistricting, and noted it was outside the Wisconsin tradition.

...we have had enough of the charade and mischaracterization. I don't mean to impugn either you or anyone associated with this case, but as they say, the facts are the facts. What has occurred here is beyond the pale in terms of lack of transparency, secrecy, and at the end of the day, as the court has commented earlier, it may not have anything to do with the price of tea in China, but appearances are everything, and Wisconsin has prided itself for one generation after another on openness and fairness and doing the right thing.
A few days later, the Wisconsin Supreme Court - - through its 4-3, conservative and pro-Republican majority - - voted, like bureaucrats or private consultants, to close many of their discussions that are routinely carried out openly.

"To sit out here and philosophize about issues is really not the best use of our time," sniffed Justice Patience Roggensack, leading the charge to retreat to chambers.

Seems a majority of the state Justices, more focused on power, have little use for Stadtmueller's "openness and fairness and doing the right thing."

Which is pretty much the definition of justice, don't you think?

The Wisconsin high court is moving from choke holds to Roggensacking,

Volumes spoken.

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