Saturday, January 3, 2015

For WI elections, GOP prefers the Soviet model

[Updated from Friday, 12:54 p.m.] Wisconsin's far-right Republican leaders serving Gov. Scott Walker and his ideological funders cut early voting hours and approved a restrictive and suppressionist voter ID bill to tighten their grip on all three branches of government.

They also adopted a redistricting law to perpetuate gerrymandered districts that were mapped out in private attorneys' offices with legislators required to sign confidentiality oaths before they were shown what their districts' boundaries might look like.
Now they are moving towards two additional power grabs which need far more media scrutiny and citizen opposition as Walker uses his state paid website in Revered Leader style for a propaganda production timed to insert a raised profile into partisan presidential primaries and caucuses:

* Adopting a Soviet-style revisionist law to unwind the results of key, non-partisan judicial elections - - to get rid of Shirley Abrahamson, a duly-elected Wisconsin Supreme Justice, who is also the court's Chief Justice and most senior member.

I've been screaming about this for a month.

Her unpardonable sins? Liberalism and, more specifically, her unwillingness to line up in support of Walker's Act 10 surprise destruction of a half-century of state-approved public-sector collective bargaining.

No matter that Act 10 was validated by the Court, 5-2, and that Justice Ann Walsh Bradley, also a "no" votes,  is in the sights of the far-right message and money machine that in recent years has successfully defeated one liberal candidate (11,000 'lost' votes for the incumbent conservative later found by a GOP-operative-turned County Clerk made the difference) and Louis Butler, a sitting liberal justice, too.

The Republican solution in search of its Chief Justice problem, even thought right now the high court regularly approves the right's agenda by 4-3 or 5-2 majorities, and has adopted a procedural code governing conflicts-of-interest written by some of the same conservative organizations who put several of the justices, the Governor and key legislators in office?

Establish a mandatory retirement age, perhaps 75, and require any judge's resignation once that age was passed, even if that mark is hit prior to the end of the term to which the voters had approved.

It's a two-pronged attack, with a related strategy to end the state's practice of choosing the chief justice by seniority.

None of the Republicans pushing this proposal have the guts or integrity to admit what they are up to.

They talk about the need to implement a state constitutional provision which says the Legislature should to establish a mandatory retirement age - - something legislators' for years have correctly shown no interest in adopting because a) there is no need for it, and b) no sane legislator back in the day would have dreamed of undoing the actions of the electorate and thereby suggesting that voters - - especially older voters who vote routinely in big numbers - - know what they were doing when they cast ballots for judges and justices.

*  Aiming to blow up the state's non-partisan election, lobbying and ethics oversight body - - the Government Accountability Board - - because its civil service staff and managing board of retired judges pursued a high-profile investigation into possible campaign finance law violations by Walker and some conservative advocacy and funding groups.

An investigation that emerged from its first phase that led to guilty pleas by a half-dozen Walker aides, associates or donors.

As with the scheme to remove the Chief Justice, or a redistricting plan hatched in secret and blasted by a Federal court judge nominated by Pres. Ronald Reagan, or ham-handed moves to end weekend voting hours that made it harder to vote in Wisconsin, Republicans are no longer guided by such pesky, red-white-and-blue matters as fairness, appearances or even a gesture towards bipartisanship.

Right now, the Republicans running Wisconsin have but one, all red goal: holding and embedding partisan power for corporate, special-interest servitude.

And they are willing to scrub off the books the results of traditional, legal elections - - even the election of the state's most senior justice on its court of last resort.


Anonymous said...

Its worse than you post -- walker's recall was STOLEN.

Walker Recall Violates The Law -- The Law of Large Numbers

And a mathematical analysis of November 2014 shows the same impossible mathematical results:

But one doesn't even need to look at cumulative vote shares (which show impossible upward hockey-stick lines boosting walkers total -- see 2 above links for details).

More at 2 links below:

Exit Poll Smoking Gun

Wisconsin True Vote Analysis Indicates Fraud:

So we are much closer to the sham-elections you decry in your post -- in fact, we are actually worse-off because no one will talk about these demonstrable facts.

MAL said...


To begin with: We need candidates for office to begin with a simple truth and repeat it endlessly - the absence of which breeds despair and lethargy: Vis: A special interest-dominated Republican party is working to turn our once proud democracy into an aspect of society with the relevancy of an obscure sporting event. Until journals, reformist institutions like schools and teachers, union workers, local officials as mayors and village alders, every sector of society sound the alarm, Soviet-style government will ensue in the state of Wisconsin. This is no time for timid commentary. We face a crisis of democracy, and we can afford no one to be silent. A young 20-something worker at a southwest neighborhood center was asked (by me) if he intended to vote just before the last election. 'No, they're all crooks,' he replied. The young gentleman could not be more mistaken, but this sentiment dominates the thinking of many, too many.

Max B. said...

Soviet-style . . . . or Liberian-style . . . .