Daily Bread for 11.21.22: Wisconsin’s Next ‘Non-Partisan’ Partisan Battle

Good morning.

Monday in Whitewater will be partly sunny with a high of 40. Sunrise is 6:55 AM and sunset 4:26 PM for 9h 31m 16s of daytime. The moon is a waning crescent with 7.7% of its visible disk illuminated.

Whitewater’s Library Board meets at 6:30 PM.

On this day in 1877, Thomas Edison announces his invention of the phonograph, a machine that can record and play sound.

A traditional view holds that Wisconsin court races should be non-partisan. That traditional view hasn’t be an accurate assessment for decades. Wisconsin’s Supreme Court has for years been a subject of partisan conflict internally and externally. That’s not about to change: there is an election this spring for the seat currently held by retiring Justice Patience Roggensack. Henry Redman reports ‘Electoral ground zero’: majority at stake in Wisconsin Supreme Court race

Just weeks after the 2022 midterm elections, Wisconsin is already moving on to this spring’s state supreme court race in which the ideological tilt of the court is up for grabs. 

Justice Patience Roggensack is retiring at the end of her term, leaving an open seat on the body that conservatives currently control with a 4-3 majority. The current makeup of the court, with conservative Justice Brian Hagedorn serving as a crucial swing vote, has led to more 4-3 decisions than any supreme court term in 70 years. 

The conservative majority on the court has upheld a law that effectively ended collective bargaining power for public workers, approved Republican-drawn legislative maps that tilt the state Legislature heavily toward the Republican party and overturned Gov. Tony Evers’ COVID-19 stay-at-home order. The court has also allowed the previous administration’s appointees to remain in their seats well past the expiration of their terms, allowing the Legislature to effectively block Evers’ appointments, and disallowed a number of methods meant to make voting more accessible. 

The issues at stake in the April 4 election include abortion rights, democracy and public safety

It’s an understatement to say that the election for the court will focus more on politics than jurisprudence. 

There are also local political implications for places like Whitewater. If the election generates significant interest in Whitewater proper, elections in the city and school district will have a different electorate from a local election without an intense, top-of-the-ballot statewide race.  

 A DIY tiny home you can build in weeks:

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