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Old 04-13-2020, 09:07 PM
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Republicans lose the state supreme court election in Wisconsin


This is great news, because this is why the GOP fought so hard against mail in ballots on the state level, and then the federal supreme court (the same one that basically said gerrymandering wasn't their concern because gerrymandering benefits republicans) had the 5 conservative judges say Wisconsin had to have their in person election despite there being a pandemic.

The conservative politicians and judges thought forcing people to vote in person would reduce voter turnout and lead to a republican victory. Instead the liberal judge won.

https://slate.com/news-and-politics/...eme-court.html

Quote:
Jill Karofsky, a liberal judge running for the Wisconsin Supreme Court, has defeated Daniel Kelly, the conservative incumbent, according to results from the April 7 election that were released Monday afternoon. Karofsky’s victory narrows the court’s conservative bloc to a 4–3 majority, putting progressives in striking distance of flipping the powerful court. It may also force Republicans to reconsider their position on absentee voting during the coronavirus pandemic. Wisconsin Republicans sought to exploit COVID-19 to suppress Democratic votes, forcing citizens to risk their health to stand in line for hours at a handful of polling places or surrender their right to vote. Donald Trump and his allies appeared to be eyeing a similar strategy for November. But in Wisconsin, at least, that strategy seems to have backfired.
I hope this has repercussions regarding the GOPs efforts to suppress voting by mail in November of 2020, since it didn't work in Wisconsin.
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Last edited by Wesley Clark; 04-13-2020 at 09:07 PM.
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Old 04-13-2020, 09:09 PM
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IMHO, having anyone elected to the judiciary is a terrible method for getting judges on the bench. The whole point of a judge is that he/she is someone who needs the fortitude and conviction to do the right but unpopular thing while in court. By subjecting them to public ballot, you'll get judges who'll make their legal decisions based off of what voters want, not what the law is or ought to be applied.
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Old 04-13-2020, 09:14 PM
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The potential loss of life with all that close proximity was a price they were all too willing to pay in order to suppress the vote enough to keep the seat.
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Old 04-13-2020, 09:19 PM
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WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO HHHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!

This makes me so happy!!!!!!!! Thanks for posting it, Wesley!!

Velocity... as opposed to being selected and appointed by the governor of a state? Because that's how it's usually done. It's very political.

Judges leaving the bench often time their departures so that their replacement is either named by a governor of their same party, or so that the seat must go to election if the governor is not of the same party. Once a judge has been appointed to the bench, it's quite difficult to dislodge them in an election. Voters as a rule don't know or understand the politics involved in this process and just vote for the "incumbent."

I had a ringside seat through quite a number of judicial appointments by governors in my time as a judge's assistant in California. Often the picks were good ones irrespective of party, but a couple of times they made me want to take a bath. Don't kid yourself. It's always political -- and sometimes even worse.
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Old 04-13-2020, 09:24 PM
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IMHO, having anyone elected to the judiciary is a terrible method for getting judges on the bench. The whole point of a judge is that he/she is someone who needs the fortitude and conviction to do the right but unpopular thing while in court. By subjecting them to public ballot, you'll get judges who'll make their legal decisions based off of what voters want, not what the law is or ought to be applied.
Is the system of having judges nominated by partisan executive level politicians and then voted on my legislative politicians honestly better?
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Old 04-14-2020, 01:07 AM
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Is the system of having judges nominated by partisan executive level politicians and then voted on my legislative politicians honestly better?
Let's try Heinlein's ultra-libertarian fantasy from MOON IS A HARD MISTRESS. No "state" exists. Parties to a dispute hire a judge based on reputation and price. The law in a case is whatever the judge says it is and applies nowhere else. If parties disagree with a verdict they can hire another judge; no refunds. If one party refuses judgement, toss-em out the airlock. That'll minimize frivolous suits and charges.

Lacking a "state", no supreme court is necessary. But people like voting and parties and that sort of shit, as Heinlein laments. Society organizes and it all goes downhill, away from libertarian paradise. Then we get crooked pols. Remember, the honest politician (or cop or judge) is one who stays bought.
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Old 04-14-2020, 01:53 AM
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Happy news! (But the R's still have a majority on that Court — Will they use it to subvert the November election?)

Has the effect on turnout been analyzed? Some oldsters may be unable to tolerate long queues.

And the usual Republican ploy is to force long queues only in D-leaning precincts. But with a D Governor — Tony Evers defeated Scott Walker in 2018 — they were no longer able to do that? Similarly, Gretchen Whitmer turned the Michigan Governorship from Red to Blue in 2018, so that state should have a fairer election. Both these states still have GOP legislatures: Can the Governors enact fairer elections by executive orders? Will the right-wing judiciary overturn such orders?

If WI and MI actually turn D for November, the Democrats have a chance to win the Oval Office! They'll still also need Florida OR Pennsylvania OR both North Carolina and New Hampshire.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Velocity View Post
IMHO, having anyone elected to the judiciary is a terrible method for getting judges on the bench. The whole point of a judge is that he/she is someone who needs the fortitude and conviction to do the right but unpopular thing while in court....
In an abstract theoretical setting I'd agree with you. But in real-world America, That ship has already sailed. Start a thread in Thread Games to explore alternate realities had the Gingrich-Limbaugh Sedition never happened.
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Old 04-14-2020, 02:09 AM
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I think it is amazing that this happened. Especially when you consider that in Milwaukee, there were only 5/180 polls open, which means each polling place had to service 60,000 voters.

Not to mention the scandal that is still unfolding of many mail ballots not delivered and/or delayed past deadlines.
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Old 04-14-2020, 05:35 AM
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Bernie staying in the primary probably helped make this happen by driving a lot of progressives to the polls. Thanks Bernie!
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Old 04-14-2020, 05:56 AM
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I am actually surprised -- I figured the messed up election would help Kelly. How many people will die because they voted? As to why they didn't vote absentee, some tried but never got their ballot.
Green Bay had *two* polling places while La Crosse had 8 (out the normal 13) -- how these numbers were figured out wasn't purely political (tell me if I am wrong)

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Old 04-14-2020, 06:00 AM
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Huge numbers of absentee ballots from liberal Dane County (Madison) coupled with voting troubles from the usual GOP base.

Fear of infection and dislike of long lines kept a lot of those older voters home. Second the hurdle to send a picture of your voter ID to the city clerk may have been too high for a lot of seniors. It would be ironic that Republicans making absentee voting difficult were hoisted on their own petard.
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Old 04-14-2020, 06:05 AM
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See this Twitter thread by Ben Wikler - the Chair of the Wisconsin Democratic Party.
Short answer; months of planning, organising, knocking on doors. Then a quick pivot in mid-March when they saw things were going to be locked down. Read the thread; it's well worth your time.
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Old 04-14-2020, 06:34 AM
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The potential loss of life with all that close proximity was a price they were all too willing to pay in order to suppress the vote enough to keep the seat.
Apparently they misjudged how many people felt so strongly about voting that they were willing to risk illness and death to do so.
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Old 04-14-2020, 06:51 AM
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Is the system of having judges nominated by partisan executive level politicians and then voted on my legislative politicians honestly better?
I give you exhibit A- Brett Kavanaugh. The answer is no. I rest my case.

Court selection is I think a serious problem at both the state and federal level. When judges are appointed, the majority party (even when they represent a minority of voters and have the majority through gerrymandering as is the case in Wisconsin) puts their political hacks in. When elected, the parties nominate judges sympathetic to their policies. Neither works for the public interest and I don't see how it can be improved.
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Old 04-14-2020, 08:05 AM
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I give you exhibit A- Brett Kavanaugh. The answer is no. I rest my case.

Court selection is I think a serious problem at both the state and federal level. When judges are appointed, the majority party (even when they represent a minority of voters and have the majority through gerrymandering as is the case in Wisconsin) puts their political hacks in. When elected, the parties nominate judges sympathetic to their policies. Neither works for the public interest and I don't see how it can be improved.
The ten year term for justices was intended to help them stay aloof from politics. It worked in Wisconsin where the elections are supposed to be non-partisan until the Kochs started pouring in millions of dollars to get their own judges elected. Now the candidates might as well be nominated at party conventions.
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Old 04-14-2020, 12:04 PM
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Seeing Musicat posting in this thread reminds me to note that many people, all across the country, who spent hours and hours handwriting postcards to drive turnout in Wisconsin are celebrating this victory on social media.

e.g.
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Old 04-14-2020, 03:10 PM
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I hope this has repercussions regarding the GOPs efforts to suppress voting by mail in November of 2020, since it didn't work in Wisconsin.
I think the repercussions will be the GOP will just start their efforts earlier and pour in more money. They'll rationalize things by saying Kelly wasn't that popular from the get-go and, all things considered, they did the best they could with the candidate they had. Also, Trump came in too late with his attacks on voting-by-mail. By November, they'll have better candidates and a more polished and forceful message against mail-in ballots. Trump may even try to use an executive order to ban them.
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Old 04-14-2020, 03:25 PM
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I think the repercussions will be the GOP will just start their efforts earlier and pour in more money. They'll rationalize things by saying Kelly wasn't that popular from the get-go and, all things considered, they did the best they could with the candidate they had. Also, Trump came in too late with his attacks on voting-by-mail. By November, they'll have better candidates and a more polished and forceful message against mail-in ballots. Trump may even try to use an executive order to ban them.
Or, they'll attempt to get these election results tossed as invalid, based on all the irregularities caused by COVID-19. (Never mind that they themselves fought to protect those irregularities.)
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Old 04-14-2020, 03:37 PM
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This really IS good news, and especially impressive news too, after the GOP went out of its way to hold the election in the middle of a plague in order to keep turnout low.
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Old 04-14-2020, 03:56 PM
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Or, they'll attempt to get these election results tossed as invalid, based on all the irregularities caused by COVID-19. (Never mind that they themselves fought to protect those irregularities.)
They didn't want to hold the election during the pandemic, but they were overruled by the Democrat governor.

Get with the (current) narrative.
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Old 04-14-2020, 04:16 PM
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They didn't want to hold the election during the pandemic, but they were overruled by the Democrat governor.

Get with the (current) narrative.
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Old 04-14-2020, 05:04 PM
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Or, they'll attempt to get these election results tossed as invalid, based on all the irregularities caused by COVID-19. (Never mind that they themselves fought to protect those irregularities.)
Perhaps but Karofsky won by 10% over Kelly putting it just beyond the margin of dispute. Besides, the big enchilada is the November election so they may just let the Democrats have their little prize and get their dirty game together for that one.
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Old 04-14-2020, 11:27 PM
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I don't think it's a good thing at all.

But i saw it coming. However, not for the reasons already listed on this thread.

Karofsky ran a better campaign, at least in the propaganda department. She lead voters to believe corruption was a huge problem in our state while it actually isn't. She presented herself in a light that won't be visible when she attempts to legislate from the bench. She appears to have outspent Kelly, at least in my area of the state.

Meanwhile Kelly ran dismal ads attacking his opponent on only 2 scant past rulings she made and not on future issues or what's at stake with the direction of the court. One particular commercial starring his daughter made him come across as a goof rather than a serious jurist.

I agree that it's a double edge sword when it comes to electing or appointing State Supreme court Justices. What percentage of the electorate have more than a vague idea of what is even in their states constitution or what the role of the State Supreme Court even is?
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Old 04-15-2020, 12:05 AM
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Even the people who are, rightly, joyously celebrating this win are mostly underrating how sensationally important and just flat-out wonderful it is. I'm gobsmacked, after being borderline despondent about Wisconsin last week. It's a glorious victory, well earned, and an extremely positive sign for November.
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Old 04-15-2020, 07:52 AM
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Let's try Heinlein's ultra-libertarian fantasy from MOON IS A HARD MISTRESS. No "state" exists. Parties to a dispute hire a judge based on reputation and price. The law in a case is whatever the judge says it is and applies nowhere else. If parties disagree with a verdict they can hire another judge; no refunds. If one party refuses judgement, toss-em out the airlock. That'll minimize frivolous suits and charges.
Yeah, because there's no way in a system like that that judges would favor rich people and corporations who will keep paying them lots of money for verdicts favorable to the rich people. Also the death penalty for being unable to pay a judgement seems a bit on the unreasonable side.
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Old 04-15-2020, 08:12 AM
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Hush! There's no room for that talk in Heinlein's universe! If you're not Lazarus Long it's merely your job to stand there in your kilt, basking in his greatness.
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Old 04-15-2020, 09:07 AM
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The GOP is just stupid. They essentially dared liberals and independents to show up to the polls. Deadly virus or no, people aren't known for turning down a dare. Especially when the national media limelight is on them. And especially when the dare is coming from an orange turd the likes of which we've never seen.
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Old 04-15-2020, 09:43 AM
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Great victory to be sure, but I don't want to overstate it. Could it be that without a contested presidential race, Republicans had less reason to show up than Democrats? Perhaps your average MAGAbot isn't that interested in state-level Supreme Court seats.
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Old 04-15-2020, 11:36 AM
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Great victory to be sure, but I don't want to overstate it. Could it be that without a contested presidential race, Republicans had less reason to show up than Democrats? Perhaps your average MAGAbot isn't that interested in state-level Supreme Court seats.
Don't know if its been validated, but since the base of hte GOP are older people supposedly they were more prone to staying home since the virus is much harder for elderly people.
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Old 04-15-2020, 07:19 PM
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I pointed out this consequence elsewhere online, that trying to keep people from voting could energize their opposition, as more people would think it was worth the risk to vote if they oppose the current system than would if they were okay with it.

It's always a thin knife edge when you try things like this, and the fact that (as pkbites said) the opposition was already pretty energized made this more likely to backfire than most. Those who wish to control the electorate do better when things are calm.

I'm glad that I was right. Even if I were a Republican, I would not want my party to be the party that pulls this shit.
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Old 04-17-2020, 05:17 PM
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I think that that is why Bernie didn't officially withdraw until the next day. And i praise him for that. But I wouldn't overstate the situation. The Republicans had no primary and therefore for most of them there was no reason to vote. If you are going to have elected judges you shouldn't hold the election in conjunction with a primary.
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Old 04-21-2020, 03:41 PM
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"MILWAUKEE, Wis. -- Officials have identified seven people who appear to have contracted the coronavirus through activities related to the April 7 election in Wisconsin.
Shawn Benjamin, a spokesman for the Milwaukee health department, said in an email to The Associated Press that his agency has confirmed the infections. Commissioner of Health Jeanette Kowalik said six of the cases involve Milwaukee voters and one is a Milwaukee poll worker, the Journal Sentinel reported."


https://abc7chicago.com/health/offic...oting/6119737/
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