Thursday, April 2, 2015

Common Cause Wisconsin Governing Board Urges "No" Vote on Constitutional Amendment to Select Chief Justice

For Release: Thursday - April 2, 2015

The State Governing Board of Common Cause in Wisconsin (CC/WI) voted unanimously Wednesday to urge Wisconsin citizens to vote against the constitutional amendment question on the April 7th ballot that would change the way in which the Chief Justice of the Wisconsin Supreme Court is selected.

“This measure is clearly directed at one individual – the current Chief Justice – and as such we believe it is overtly personal and partisan and ought not be the basis for a fundamental change in the Wisconsin Constitution,” said Bill Kraus, the Chair of CC/WI.

Kraus noted that the current method in which the most senior member of the Supreme Court is named the Chief Justice has been in place for 126 years. “Amending the Wisconsin Constitution in the middle of the term of the current Chief Justice in order to be able to select someone else for that position undermines the choice of the significant majority of Wisconsin citizens who voted to re-elect the current Chief in 2009. If this were a serious, non-partisan proposal to alter the current selection process, the effective date of this measure would be in 2019 – after the current term of the Chief Justice ends.”

“We urge Wisconsin voters to reject this partisan, personal assault on the current Chief Justice,” Kraus said. “Amending the Wisconsin Constitution ought not be undertaken simply to remove a single individual. Wisconsinites deserve better than that.”


Jay Heck
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Common Cause in Wisconsin
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Madison, WI  53703

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