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Thursday, November 19, 2009

Why Vote?

I just read an editorial in The Wall Street Journal which made me wonder, "Why Vote?" It seems that there is a judge, Louis Butler, in Wisconsin who ran for a place on the Wisconsin Supreme Court twice and was rejected by the voters twice.

After he was defeated by the voters in 2000, the governor appointed him to a seat vacated by Justice Diane Sykes in 2004. After four years of his being on the bench, the voters again rejected him making him the first sitting justice on the Wisconsin Supreme Court in four decades to lose a retention election last year.

Here are two of his cases. In Ferdon v. Wisconsin Partners, he dismantled the state's limit on non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases, the kind of tort reform that had worked well for the state (taxpayers). In Thomas v. Mallet his decision allowed "collective liability" in lead paint cases, making any company a potential target regardless of whether or not they made the paint in question. His nickname when he was a public defender was "Loophole Louis" since he was considered to be soft on crime.

Mr. Butler's nomination is a slap in the face to Wisconsin voters. They will be stuck with Mr. Butler for life.

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