March 28, 2013

A couple of questions for Justice Pat Roggensack

Why hasn't anybody asked Justice Pat Roggensack these questions? They seem obvious to me, and I don't even live in Wisconsin any more.

1) Justice Roggensack, you wrote in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:
"[W]hen a citizen votes in a judicial election, he or she exercises a right guaranteed under the First Amendment of the United States Constitution."
The First Amendment — as you know — originally applied only to Congress. Since then the United States Supreme Court has held, by selective incorporation, that certain elements of the Bill of Rights apply to State governments, but the right to vote has never been incorporated through the First Amendment.

So according to what constitutional theory or legal reasoning did you reach the conclusion that the right to vote in State judicial elections is guaranteed by the First Amendment?*

2) Many observers attribute the authorship of the per curiam order in Ozanne v. Fitzgerald to you, Justice Roggensack. In that order the court devised what it called "supervisory/original jurisdiction."

a) How could the court invoke its original jurisdiction when in fact it was the third court to review the particulars of the case?

b) As for the court's supervisory (more accurately, its superintending) jurisdiction, less than one month after its order in Ozanne, you joined a majority opinion of the court which declared:
"A supervisory writ is an extraordinary remedy to prevent a court from refusing to perform, or from violating, its plain duty."
This seems like a clear directive, and provides the criteria that a court must find are satisfied before granting this "extraordinary remedy."

But there is neither any discussion — nor even a mention — in the court's Ozanne v. Fitzgerald order of Dane County Circuit Court Judge Maryann Sumi's having refused to perform her plain duty, nor is there any discussion or mention of Judge Sumi's having violated her plain duty.

So how do you square your July 14, 2011 directive with Ozanne?

It seems the citizens are lacking an important chain in your reasoning.

* There is no constitutional right to vote for federal judges.

1 comment:

Stephen Maturin said...

Being part of a bought-and-paid-for political body such as the Wisconsin Supreme Court must be comforting in that one needn't even pretend to be anything other than a craven political hack. Not every state supreme court justice has the sort of job security needed to confidently make public displays of breathtaking ignorance such as the ones on display in that there poast. It's as if Orly Taitz and Joe Walsh (the teabilly, not the musician) made a big, dumb baby.