This Tuesday, February 16, three candidates are running for Wisconsin Supreme Court. You can vote for only one. The choice is clear.
Judge JoAnne Kloppenburg has what we need in a Justice on our state’s highest court.
Civil Rights pioneer Vel Phillips has endorsed Judge Kloppenburg, saying, “I respect people with courage, integrity, a commitment to justice, and a dedication to public service. In Judge JoAnne Kloppenburg, I see all of these qualities gathered in a jurist of superb legal qualifications. Judge Kloppenburg will be a Supreme Court Justice who never forgets that she serves all the people of Wisconsin. I am proud to support her.”
Judge Kloppenburg has been standing up for the people her entire career.
Judge Kloppenburg is currently the Presiding Judge on the Wisconsin Court of Appeals, District 4. She became a Judge the old fashioned way: she was elected by the voters. She has issued hundreds of written decisions in all areas of the law. She has a proven track record as a fair, impartial, thoughtful, and principled appellate Judge.
Before becoming a judge, she served for 23 years as an Assistant Attorney General in the Wisconsin Department of Justice. She represented the people’s interests, handling cases in many areas of the law: environmental cases, applying the law to help keep our air and water clean, constitutional law, appellate law, administrative law, and all aspects of civil litigation.
Judge Kloppenburg’s commitment to public service is lifelong. Prior to law school, she served three years in the Peace Corps in Botswana in Africa, planning and obtaining international assistance for rural development projects. Back in the States, she established a nutrition program for women and children in two rural counties in upstate New York.
Judge Kloppenburg chose the practice of law because she values its power and its potential to be a force for positive change. She chose to work at the Department of Justice so she could work for the people of Wisconsin on cases that have a direct impact on our lives.
This campaign is about the future of our Supreme Court, what kind of Court it ought to be and what kind of justices we ought to elect to the Court. The Court ought to be a place where justice is done without fear or favor. We must elect Justices who have the courage and skill to stand up against the partisan politics and special interests that have no place on the Court.
Judge Kloppenburg is the strongest, clearest alternative to Gov. Walker’s choice, Rebecca Bradley.
Governor Walker has appointed Rebecca Bradley three times to three judgeships in three years. Rebecca Bradley has a long and well known partisan history. She has been a member of the Federalist Society and a member of the National Republican Lawyers Association. The Republican Party is helping pay for her staff and campaign expenses. Rebecca Bradley has said that racial disparities and the disproportionate confinement of people of color are not issues in this campaign.
The other candidate, Joe Donald, supported Rebecca Bradley twice. He endorsed Bradley after Governor Walker appointed her to Circuit Court. Then, last year, he served as a reference for Bradley’s application to Governor Walker for her second judicial appointment. When asked by a reporter why he supported Rebecca Bradley, Donald said, “The only thing I can tell you is that I got bamboozled.”
We need Justices who cannot be “bamboozled” by partisan agendas that threaten the ability of our Court to function as an independent check and balance on the other branches of government.
Judge Kloppenburg ran a strong campaign in 2011, earning 750,000 votes in an election that had the highest turnout in a Supreme Court race. She is building on that statewide support. She’s the only candidate in the race who has travelled to all 72 Counties, the only candidate with public supporters from every County.
There is no other candidate in this race who matches the breadth and depth of Judge Kloppenburg’s judicial and legal experience. There is no other candidate who matches her ability to reach out, statewide, and build the strong, grassroots network it takes to win.
Judge Kloppenburg is the only candidate in this campaign who has shown she can win this race and stand up, as a Justice on our Supreme Court, to the partisan politics and unregulated special interests that have no place on the Court. Please join Vel Phillips supporting Judge JoAnne Kloppenburg on February 16.