Control of Wisconsin Supreme Court at stake in today’s primary

By Dave Andrusko

Today, four candidates will compete to fill the vacancy created on the State Supreme Court by the upcoming retirement of Justice Patience Roggensack.  Today’s primary will winnow the field to the two candidates who receive the most votes who will then square off one-on-one on April 4th .

The Wisconsin Right to Life Political Action Committee (PAC) has endorsed Justice Daniel Kelly and Judge Jennifer Dorow as candidates in the Wisconsin Supreme Court Primary.

 “Wisconsin Right to Life is confident that if elected, both Justice Kelly and Judge Dorow would be strong defenders of the Constitution, and would serve our state fairly and conservatively as Supreme Court Justices,” said Gracie Skogman, Wisconsin Right to Life legislative/PAC director. “We appreciate their integrity, honesty, and shared belief that the role of the judiciary is not to legislate, but to interpret laws and apply them as written. Other candidates in this race have already shown themselves to be mouthpieces for the pro-abortion agenda, and we are not confident that they will rule with impartiality in upcoming cases.” 

The two other candidates in the primary are Janet Protasiewicz and Everett Mitchell. 

Currently the court has a 4-3 conservative majority.

According to Joseph Ax of Reuters, the June 24 Dobbs decision triggered the 1849 law which banned abortion throughout pregnancy, unless it is necessary to save the life of the mother.

Pro-abortion Attorney General Josh Kaul “filed a lawsuit claiming the statute is invalid –a case eventually headed for the state Supreme Court,” Ax wrote.

“This is Wisconsin’s Roe moment,” said Skogman, of Wisconsin Right to Life, which is backing the conservative candidates. “It’s not only the fate of our current law that is in jeopardy depending on the ideological makeup of the court, but they have the opportunity to set the standard for pro-life and abortion policy for decades to come.”

The Washington Examiner’s Cami Mondeaux reported “With the reversal of Roe, the question of abortion’s legality has returned to the states, meaning judges in state courts have jurisdiction over the matter. As a result, the Wisconsin Supreme Court is expected to take on a number of abortion-related challenges — which could swing in either direction depending on a conservative or liberal majority.”

Thus, a great deal of money has been poured into the contest. 

“The contest already ranks among the most expensive state supreme court races in history, according to Douglas Keith, an attorney at New York University’s Brennan Center for Justice who tracks spending on judicial elections,” Ax reported.

“More than $7 million has been spent on television advertising with six weeks before the general election, putting it on track to shatter the $15 million overall spending record for a single-seat race, set in 2004 in Illinois.”