By Judge JoAnne Kloppenburg
Candidate, Wisconsin Supreme Court
In his final State of the Union Address on January 13, President Obama observed that, “Progress is not inevitable. It is the result of choices we make together.”
Election days offer a great example of one of those times when Americans come together to collectively make a choice. And the choices we make on Election Day have long-term ramifications for our communities, our states and our nation.
On February 16, there is such an election. This Primary election will help decide the future of our Supreme Court, what kind of Court it ought to be and what kind of justices we ought to be electing to the Court.
The Wisconsin Supreme Court should be a place where everyone gets a fair shake.
It should be a place where Justices approach each case with an open mind.
I am running because I am unwilling to surrender the Court to the outside special interests and partisan politics that can undermine the integrity and independence of our Court.
With partisan politics, come agendas. Those agendas don’t belong in our courts.
With massive amounts of unaccountable spending by outside special interests – that don’t have to disclose their donors – comes the perception that Justice is for sale.
Together, you and I can make sure that the Wisconsin Supreme Court works for all the people of Wisconsin.
And it all starts with the February 16 primary, when voters will have their chance to narrow the field in this race.
The choice could not be clearer. Scott Walker has appointed Rebecca Bradley three times to three judgeships in three years.
One of Rebecca’s Bradley’s conservative supporters wrote to the Governor that “Rebecca…can expect to receive the strong support of conservatives. She has paid her dues. That will not be ignored.”
Paying your dues to conservative causes is not a qualification for service on the Wisconsin Supreme Court.
Rebecca Bradley is Scott Walker’s choice. I am running to be the people’s choice.
We have a tremendous opportunity in this election to make progress toward maintaining the independence and integrity of the Court by electing a new Justice.
To do that, we need a candidate who has and will consistently stand up to the special interests and partisan politics that would undermine our courts.
We need a candidate who can provide a strong, clear voice in articulating the difference between Scott Walker’s choice and the people’s choice.
I am the only candidate in this race who has consistently done that throughout my career and in this campaign. And I am the only candidate you can count on to keep standing up for all the people of Wisconsin.
There is no other candidate in this race who matches the breadth and depth of my legal and judicial experience.
There is no other candidate in this race with my proven track record as an independent, fair, and nonpartisan appellate judge.
There is no other candidate with my background as a prosecutor and litigator in courts across this great State.
There is no candidate who matches my ability to reach out, statewide, and build the strong, grassroots network it takes to win this race.
And I am the only candidate who has both the background and the backbone both to win this campaign and then to stand up to partisan interests and special interest money on the Supreme Court.
I am honored to be endorsed by civil rights pioneer Vel Phillips; by former congressman Dave Obey from Wausau; by former Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk from Madison; by Menominee leader Ada Deer.
I am the only candidate who has a list of more than 1400 public supporters who come from every County in Wisconsin.
Everywhere I go in Wisconsin – and I alone among the candidates have visited all 72 counties — Wisconsinites tell me they want all three branches of government to work for the people, not for the special interests. They want the Court to function as it should: as a check and balance on the other political branches of Government.
For more than 26 years as a Judge and as an attorney I’ve stood up for the people of Wisconsin. I ask you to stand with me now so I can continue to do just that as the next Justice on OUR Wisconsin Supreme Court. I would be honored by your vote on February 16.