Trump Claims ‘Cheating’ In Wisconsin Election Case: ‘Republicans Must Do Something’
Authored by Jack Phillips via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),
Former President Donald Trump issued a response after the Wisconsin State Supreme Court heard oral arguments in a case targeting state election maps.
Last week, Democrats urged the Wisconsin Supreme Court to overturn Republican-drawn legislative maps. The lawsuit was first brought by voters the day after the court flipped to what some say is a majority 4-3 liberal control in August. They want all 132 state lawmakers to stand for election under new, more favorable maps in 2024.
The state Legislature’s district maps were first drawn under former Republican Gov. Scott Walker, allowing the GOP to keep their majority in both chambers of the state Legislature.
Earlier this week, the former president offered criticism of the challenge, condemning the Wisconsin Supreme Court for taking up the challenge. He also shared a Wall Street Journal editorial that raised questions about the timing of the lawsuit after Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Janet Protasiewicz, who was backed by the Democratic Party of Wisconsin, started serving.
“Tremendous cheating going on in a State that I love, Wisconsin. Republicans must do something to stop it!” President Trump said in a Truth Social post.
The Wall Street Journal article, meanwhile, wrote that Democrats fought to get Judge Protasiewicz elected earlier this year so “she could help them retake control of the state Legislature through a rewrite of the state’s political maps. Now the court’s liberal majority is going through contortions to deliver on that anti-democratic judicial promissory note,” describing the scenario as a “looming judicial coup.”
The fight comes ahead of the 2024 election in a battleground state where four of the six past presidential elections have been decided by fewer than 23,000 votes, and Republicans have built large majorities in the legislature under maps they drew over a decade ago.
President Trump won Wisconsin in the 2016 vote, while the state was certified in favor of President Joe Biden in 2020. Analysts have said it remains a key battleground state in 2024, coming after Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) won his reelection bid last year.
Last week, Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Rebecca Bradley most aggressively questioned the motives of Democrats and repeatedly referenced newly elected Judge Protasiewicz saying during her campaign that the current maps are “rigged.”
“Everybody knows that the reason we’re here is because there was a change in the membership of the court,” Judge Bradley said. She said ordering elections for all 132 lawmakers, including half of the Senate midway through their current terms, was “absolutely extraordinary.”
“I can’t imagine something less democratic than unseating most of the Legislature that was duly elected last year,” she added.
During a candidate forum last year, Judge Protasiewicz said that the legislative “maps are rigged, bottom line. Absolutely, positively rigged. They do not reflect the people in this state.”
“They do not reflect accurate representation, neither the state Assembly or the state Senate. They are rigged, period. Coming right out and saying that. I don’t think you could sell to any reasonable person that the maps are fair,” Judge Protasiewicz continued.
Attorney Mark Gaber, from the Campaign Legal Center, said the timing of the lawsuit had nothing to do with the election result. He said the challenge over whether the districts are unconstitutionally not contiguous would have been filed, regardless of the makeup of the court. “I don’t see that as a partisan issue,” Mr. Gaber said.
Taylor Meehan, attorney for the Republican-controlled Wisconsin Legislature, said the lawsuit was meritless, brought too late, and that Democrats only filed it because control of the court flipped. “They are a wolf in sheep’s clothing designed to backdoor a political statewide remedy,” Mr. Meehan said.
Due to her comments on the “rigged” maps, Republicans in the Legislature have publicly floated impeaching the judge if she didn’t recuse herself from the case and other redistricting cases.
On Tuesday, a judge dismissed a left-wing group’s lawsuit that claimed a panel researching the possible impeachment of the judge violated the state’s laws. Dane County Circuit Judge Frank Remington ruled that the group, American Oversight, filed its lawsuit too early, coming after Republican Assembly Speaker Robin Vos asked former state Supreme Court justices in September to advise on whether it’s legal to impeach the justice.
The legal fight in Wisconsin comes after the U.S. Supreme Court rejected the state of Alabama’s bid to use a Republican-drawn congressional map. Months before that, the top U.S. court issued a ruling against the state that argued Alabama violated the Voting Rights Act, although Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall, a Republican, said the court erred in its decision.
“It is now clear that none of the maps proposed by Republican supermajorities had any chance of success. Treating voters as individuals would not do. Instead, our elected representatives and our voters must apparently be reduced to skin color alone,” he said at the time.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Fri, 12/01/2023 – 18:00
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