Little of the above appears to have been confirmed by more traditional means, but it is true that Randy Hopper, Republican of Fond Du Lac, is embroiled in divorce proceedings and headed for trial, and it is true that Persuasion Partners Inc. scrubbed Sen. Hopper's alleged Madison girlfriend from its website yesterday.
Domestic arrangements substantially similar to marriage neither valid nor recognized in this State.Persuasion Partners is a Republican PR/lobbying outfit operated by Darrin Schmitz,* famed orchestrator of the notorious Mike Gableman for Wisconsin Supreme Court campaign of 2007/08. Schmitz helped Gableman get formally charged with ethics violations, a case that dragged on for many months and the charges remain pending against Gableman: the State Supreme Court split 3-3 on its disposition, with Justice David Prosser, who himself stands for reelection on April 5, holding in sympathy with Gableman's aggressive rationalizations.
— Shorter Wis. Const., J. Appling, ed.
Hopper is believed to be the most vulnerable of the eight Republican State Senators against whom recall efforts are underway. If organizers can topple three of them then Democrats might regain control of the 33-member body. The others would most likely be the 8th Senate district's Alberta Darling and the 32nd's Dan Kapanke.
Sen. Darling's constituency presents an interesting challenge, as it straddles the affluent and increasingly liberal northern lakeshore Milwaukee County suburbs and the three most defiantly conservative counties in the State: Ozaukee, Washington, and Waukesha.
Sen. Kapanke's district spreads over five counties along the State's western border. Kapanke won the district in 2008 but narrowly lost the most populous (by far) of the five, La Crosse County. So the signature-gatherers know exactly where to concentrate their labors.
As for Randy Hopper, he should probably just resign.
* Schmitz calculated then-circuit court judge Gableman's rate of reversal on appeal by counting as cases thousands of uncontested traffic tickets, which Schmitz claimed Gableman had "presided over."
That a sly (or possibly clueless) partisan operator would pull such a risible stunt is unsurprising, but that a State judge with an advanced degree in law would let him get away with it is almost beyond belief.