Wisconsin’s GOP-controlled Supreme Court rules against Democratic governor

According to The New York Times, Wisconsin’s Republican-controlled state Supreme Court has just dealt its Democratic governor a major setback. 

The justices ruled last week that political appointees are not obligated to vacate their post until a replacement has been confirmed in the state Senate.

GOP appointees will remain

That decision is expected to create a stumbling block for Gov. Tony Evers (D) when it comes to implementing his agenda, as Republican state senators have refused to confirm many of his appointees.

The ruling has many detractors, with one of them being University of Wisconsin-Madison political science professor Barry Burden.

“Most people on the street would say when a term … expires, there’s an opening. The Supreme Court has said that commonsense understanding is not right,” Burden was quoted as saying.

He added that the decision “raises the question of why is there a term at all? Maybe we just say a person serves for life the way a U.S. Supreme Court justice does.”

Governor slams ruling

For his part, Evers released a statement in which he suggested that the GOP and his state’s highest judicial body are working to undermine democracy.

“Today, I remind the Wisconsin Supreme Court and the Republican Party of this state that we do still live in a democracy, a very basic function of which is the peaceful and respectful transfer of power, even — and most especially — when you lose,” Evers said.

Since becoming governor, I’ve worked to appoint experienced, hardworking Wisconsinites from every corner of our state to serve in important roles in our government—just like every governor has before me, and every governor will after me,” he insisted.

Evers went on to argue that his appointees “are exceptionally qualified,” and said that they “should be considered on their merit, and should have the opportunity to serve the people of our state.”

He contended that this is true “regardless of whether or not they were appointed by a Democrat or share the same ideas as Republicans in the Legislature.”

“Today’s decision continues to underscore the erosion of democratic institutions at the hands of Republicans in this state. It’s wrongheaded, it’s shortsighted, and it’s politics at its most dangerous.

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