February 8, 2011

Candidate Joel Winnig is on the warpath

Update: Joel Winnig goes all in

"Michael Gableman continues to pollute the Wisconsin Supreme Court." — Joel Winnig, speaking this morning to WPR's Joy Cardin
"Mike Gableman lied and cheated and got his job that way."
That's a provocative way to characterize a prospective colleague and one unlikely to improve the public and private testiness between the State Supreme Court's so-called liberal and conservative factions.

Joel Winnig also suggested that incumbent Justice David Prosser, the fellow he hopes to replace on the court, doesn't know the difference between right and wrong, which coincidentally is an element of what's popularly known as the insanity defense (a criminal defendant's inability to recognize certain moral distinctions is the manifestation of a mental disease or defect, according to Wisconsin law).

Winnig may be smelling blood in the water and stepping up his game after yesterday's reports indicating that one of his primary election rivals, Marla Stephens, hasn't raised enough money to run any Statewide teevee ads.* Stephens opted out of the public financing scheme that dispenses to primary candidates $100K in public money.

The two candidates who survive the February 15 primary each receive another $300K to continue toward the general election on April 5. Winnig also told Ms. Cardin he'd seek an additional $300K to combat an expected third-party onslaught of conservative advertising — including by the notorious Koch Bros. — devoted to protecting Justice Prosser, who presents himself as the conservative candidate.

Justice Prosser is a lock to advance beyond the primary and will face either Mr. Winnig, Ms. Stephens, or JoAnne Kloppenburg in April.

Said Winnig, "I tell my clients I set out not to become wealthy as a lawyer and I succeeded long ago." That's a pretty good line though.

* It's absurd that this factor would be among the qualifications for a seat on the Supreme Court, but apparently that's the way it works.

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