Voter Suppression

Judge Blocks Voter ID Law, Republicans Throw Fit

A Wisconsin circuit court judge issued an injunction yesterday preventing the state from enforcing the voter ID law passed by Scott Walker and his loyal henchmen in the state legislature while a lawsuit by the ACLU regarding the matter is pending.

A judge in Wisconsin’s Dane County granted a temporary injunction barring enforcement of the state’s controversial voter ID law on Tuesday, ruling that enforcing the law on April 3 elections would likely cause irreparable harm.

The Wisconsin State Journal reports that Circuit Judge David Flanagan ruled that a suit by the NAACP’s Milwaukee branch and Voces de la Frontera against Gov. Scott Walker (R) had demonstrated that the lawsuit would probably succeed on its merits. He ordered Walker and the state to immediately cease their efforts to enforce or implement the law, pending a trial on April 16.

“If no injunction is issued, a clearly improper impairment of a most vital element of our society will occur,” Flanagan wrote in his decision, according to the newspaper. “The duty of the court is clear. The case has been made. Irreparable harm is likely to occur in the absence of an injunction.”

Naturally, the state Republican party has responded by calling for an investigation of the judge who issued the injunction, and by claiming he should have recused himself because he was among the more than 1 million citizens who signed a petition to recall Governor Scott Walker.

Judge David Flanagan has not been accused of committing a crime. He's simply facing ethical questions from a group of people who are doing everything they can to suppress voters.

  • IrishGrrrl

    I am not a lawyer but here’s my two cents….

    I don’t know if his signing the petition qualifies…but it might. The key is whether he already has an opinion about the facts of this particular case. So we know he signed a petition to have the law repealed but that’s not what he was judging on….he was specifically passing judgement on an injunction, NOT an overturning of the law. The standard for an injunction isn’t “is this law discriminatory” (which would be a determination of constitutionality). Instead it is a question of “what is the likelihood of someone being discriminated against by this law while the parties are awaiting for the case to be judged on it’s constitutional merits?” He determined that yes, there was likely to be discrimination while they waited for the larger case to come to trial. So he didn’t get rid of the law and for that trial he probably would have to recuse himself….plus, that asswipe of a governor can go and probably will go to the next level court to get a secondary opinion, as it were, on the injunction.

    • Roger Merritt

      Errr… The article didn’t say he signed a petition to revoke the law, it said he signed a petition to recall Governor Walker. My opinion (I am not a lowyer) is that if he had signed a petition to revoke a law he should recuse himself from any suit involving that law, since he has already formed an opinion. In this case, not so much.

      • IrishGrrrl

        DOH, sorry…. misread…..

  • Joy Cohen

    Since when is it a crime to sign a petition.

    • marigold1960

      It’s not like he was e*mailing racist jokes! ;)