“By limiting the reach of Wisconsin coordination rules to ‘express advocacy, ‘ for or against candidates, the court has made campaign finance law extraordinarily easy to evade”, he added.
Gov. Scott Walker (R-Wis.) did not violate campaign finance laws during recall elections against him, the Wisconsin Supreme Court decided in an opinion released Thursday. Prosecutors alleged in court documents that Walker’s campaign encouraged donors to contribute to the Wisconsin Club for Growth, a pro-Walker advocacy group that could accept unlimited donations and that employed a key Walker adviser.
Justice Shirley Abrahamson, one of the court’s two liberal-leaning justices, accused the court’s conservative majority of adopting an “unprecedented and faulty interpretation” of state campaign finance law and the U.S. Constitution.
“It’s time to move past this unwarranted investigation that has cost taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars”, AshLee Strong said.
Mr. Schmitz said in an email to The Associated Press that he was disappointed with the ruling and that “the decision represents a loss for all the citizens of Wisconsin”. It is a major victory for Walker, who earlier this week launched his campaign for president.
“In doing so, the majority opinion delivers a significant blow to Wisconsin’s campaign finance law and to its paramount objectives of “stimulating vigorous campaigns on a fair and equal basis” and providing for ‘a better informed electorate.’ “.
No. The secrecy surrounding the John Doe was originally meant to protect the integrity of the investigation.
If you don’t know how Milwaukee District Attorney John Chisholm (see above) has been abusing his power to harass supporters of Scott Walker, read this and this.
> Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce CEO Kurt R. Bauer: “WMC is very pleased that the Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled today in favor of constitutionally protected free speech and association”.
Outlining his vision of the criminal justice system, the Republican presidential candidate cited the city of Camden as a model for rebuilding trust between law enforcement and residents while also driving down violent crime.
Gableman explained “Deputies seized business papers, computer equipment, phones, and other devices, while their targets were restrained under police supervision and denied the ability to contact their attorneys”.
The high court’s partisan nature has always been exceptionally public, including a physical confrontation between Prosser and Bradley in 2011 and, just months ago, a bitter transition in leadership as Roggensack took over as chief justice from Abrahamson.
Walker rose to national prominence by defeating the recall election that grew from his challenge to the collective bargaining process for most public employee unions in Wisconsin. Four of the justices of the court were the beneficiaries of dark money spent in their behalf and which was the heart of this case.
The investigation began two months after Walker won the recall election, involving many people and rounds of legal maneuvering. And outstanding civil suits allege overreach by the John Doe prosecutors and Wisconsin’s Government Accountability Board, which the plaintiffs say inappropriately helped initiate the investigation.
In May 2015, The U.S. Supreme Court rejected a bid to stop the investigation, leaving intact a federal appeals court ruling that overturned the decision by the federal judge. Problems with this investigation are what led to the state Supreme Court case.
But there also are concerns that this decision sets a risky new standard for campaign spending in Wisconsin and elsewhere.
As a result, candidates and outside groups in Wisconsin now have an open door to coordinate on ad campaigns – so long as those ads stay at least technically limited to issues, rather than elections or votes.