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As I See It

Mask lawsuit shows Supreme Court justices should not hear cases involving their big donors



We need to dig deeper into the topic we discussed yesterday; the Wisconsin Supreme Court’s decision to overturn the Governor’s statewide mask mandate. We mentioned the lack of a pandemic response could cost the state $50 million a month in federal food stamp assistance. There is another money trail that needs to be followed, and that involves the private citizen who brought the lawsuit challenging the Governor’s mask order. His name is Jere Fabick, a very wealthy man who has been generous to Republican causes. He has given more than $350,000 in political donations to Republican or conservative candidates. That includes a $20,000 donation to Rebecca Bradley, a justice on the Wisconsin Supreme Court. That is well within Fabick’s rights. He can spend his money however he wants. But this is the same court that ruled the Governor’s mask order unlawful. And yes, Justice Bradley was among those hearing the case. Want to guess which way she voted? Follow the money. Bradley sided with the majority. This is why Wisconsin needs stronger recusal laws for Supreme Court justices. She should not have been allowed to hear the case. Or should have had the sense to avoid a conflict of interest. How can a justice take all that money and then be objective? Even if this wasn’t about the money, it sure looks like it could have been. And Wisconsin Supreme Court justices should not put themselves in that position.

Scott Robert Shaw serves as WIZM Program Director and News Director, and delivers the morning news on WKTY, Z-93 and 95.7 The Rock. Scott has been at Mid-West Family La Crosse since 1989, and authors Wisconsin's only daily radio editorial, "As I See It" heard on WIZM each weekday morning and afternoon.

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  1. Bill Feehan

    April 2, 2021 at 6:09 am

    Our state has reached a very sad place. The language of the law is clear. The governor can declare a state of emergency for 60 days. It takes an act of the legislature to extend the emergency. The three liberal justices on the Wisconsin Supreme Court ignored the law. A society that does not enforce its laws descends into chaos. The Governor of Wisconsin has acted like a dictator ignoring the laws passed by the elected representatives of the people. This is the story, not who donated to the judges.

  2. Ronald Walker

    April 2, 2021 at 8:53 am

    Scott, Scott, Scott.
    Here we go again. If you want to be fair and impartial you should mention a man by the name of George Soros who throws not hundreds of thousands of dollars toward his political allies but hundreds of millions!
    Politics is a dirty game played by both sides and yet you seem to only see it one way.
    I believe there is a old saying about turning a blind eye.
    Be fair Scott and admit both parties are at fault and until you admit this, we will continue to be divided in this country because of people like you who continue to only have one eye open.

    • William J. Hillary

      April 3, 2021 at 1:47 pm

      “Everybody does it” is not an excuse for Supreme Court justice not to recuse, especially in this case.

  3. Nick Berry

    April 2, 2021 at 11:12 am

    Disclose all donors of all the judges including pac money for all and who the pac represents or shut up.
    I have asked for all in the media to play it down the middle for over thirty years . Hell will freeze over first.

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