However: I really wish people would stop saying "Butler found a loophole" is true. It wasn't a loophole, and Butler didn't find it.
So how could it be true.
Or, don't believe me, ask Gableman himself:
The evidentiary error as found by both the Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court of Wisconsin is the "loophole" to which the Advertisement referred.Responsive Statement of Facts at 7, Wisconsin Judicial Commission v. Michael J. Gableman, No. 2008AP002458-J (Wis., April 1, 2009) (highly instructive scare quotes in original).
[The Supreme Court] found that the error had occurred in the trial court in the Mitchell case ...
Not a loophole, and not found by Butler. Says Gableman. His words.
And Butler was not Mitchell's trial lawyer. Upon conviction, Mitchell's counsel at trial would have filed a notice of appeal, following which Butler would have been alerted to the evidentiary errors committed during that trial. Every lawyer in the State knows the routine. It's simply inconceivable that a sitting judge, Michael Gableman, didn't.
That Justice Gableman agonized over running the ad before deciding to run it certainly could support an inference that he did not believe it was false. — law professor Rick EsenbergThese bland apologetics are just laughable. Gableman is hardly that dumb. Moreover, one of the three-judge panel's unanimous findings was that Gableman's ethics violations were committed knowingly.