Well, it’s always disappointing to see a conservative Supreme Court majority slip away, but that’s exactly what happened in Wisconsin on Tuesday night. In a shock result, liberal Judge Janet Protasiewicz was elected to the state’s Supreme Court, giving the left a majority for the first time in 15 years. But we shouldn’t be too surprised, given that Protasiewicz had support from Democrats, while her opponent, former Justice Daniel Kelly, was backed by Republicans.
Liberals Gain Majority on Wisconsin Supreme Court https://t.co/Xhm1itRCYx
— Townhall.com (@townhallcom) April 5, 2023
The election was closely watched, with Decision Desk calling the race shortly before 10:00pm ET, or 9:00pm CT. With an estimated 70 percent of the vote in, Protasiewicz has 55.71 percent of the vote to Kelly’s 44.29 percent of the vote. Despite her victory, even Protasiewicz was surprised by the scale of her support: “I feel great. I could not feel better. I am surprised of the results and the magnitude of the victory here. We are absolutely delighted and thrilled,” she told the Associated Press.
Decision Desk HQ projects Janet Protasiewicz wins election to the Wisconsin Supreme Court.#DecisionMade: 9:56pm EST
Follow more results here: https://t.co/ST2S29dNw9 pic.twitter.com/jYeZUF3cVY
— Decision Desk HQ (@DecisionDeskHQ) April 5, 2023
It’s clear that Protasiewicz owes her victory to liberal groups such as Planned Parenthood, which supported her campaign. Indeed, the abortion issue played a major part in her bid for the Supreme Court. The new court, which will be controlled 4-3 by liberals, is expected to rule on a pending lawsuit challenging the state’s 1849 law banning abortion. Protasiewicz made the issue a focus of her campaign and won the support of Planned Parenthood and other abortion rights groups.
However, Protasiewicz was coy about her own views on the issue, saying only that she supports abortion rights but stopping short of saying how she would rule on the lawsuit. Her opponent, Kelly, was labeled an “extreme partisan” by Protasiewicz and accused of supporting the ban, though he never said how he would rule on the issue.
In any case, there’s no question that Wisconsin’s Supreme Court will become more liberal with Protasiewicz’s appointment. She’ll be replacing retiring Justice Pat Roggensack, who served as part of the court’s conservative majority. With Wisconsin now in liberal hands, we can expect a flood of left-wing policies and court decisions to come pouring out of Madison. It’s a sad day for conservatives, but we’ll keep fighting the good fight.