February 9, 2009

The Grand Old Non-Party

The Janesville (WI) Gazette, reporting on last night's Republican jamboree there, describes Jefferson County Circuit Judge Randy Koschnick as one of the "stars" of Wisconsin's Republican Party.

Koschnick is believed to be challenging State Supreme Court Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson in an election April 7. Such elections are, according to the Wisconsin Revisor of Statutes, "non-partisan."

Judge Koschnick addressed the Party jamboree along with several other celebrated local Republicans, according to the Gazette.

"Look out Democrats," warns reporter Frank Schultz, who was apparently obliged to endure the festivities. "The GOP is coming after you." And Democrats, complained another of the stellar Republican Party luminaries, Rep. Paul Ryan, "run everything."

Yet a further brightly burning ball of reactive gas, State Party chairman Reince Priebus — fresh from dutifully rearranging his national Party counterpart's clerical accoutrements — proclaimed a return to "the Party of Lincoln once again."

The reference is to a 19th century American president who unilaterally suspended the constitutional right of habeas corpus (which only the United States Congress is constitutionally empowered to do, as most "strict constructionists" are aware).

Meanwhile: "Judges must not only be fair, neutral, impartial and non-partisan but also should be so perceived by the public," wrote all seven Wisconsin Supreme Court justices in December, 2007.

Last week, Judge Koschnick was the toast of another GOP shindig.

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