In the Friday afternoon news dump, Mr. Scott Walker announced the appointment of Jim Troupis to the vacant seat on the Dane County Circuit Court previously held by Judge John Albert, who retired. Mr. Troupis will hold the seat until he is deposed by Dane County voters in August 2016.
Yes, of course the governor wants to appoint people who have done him favors, large and small. But this is ridiculous.
In the press release announcing the appointment, Mr. Walker praises Jim Troupis with these words: “Jim Troupis brings an incredible breadth of experience and talent to the Dane County bench. More than that, he is committed to the rule of law and to public service, and I am confident he will do an excellent job.”
Committed to the rule of law? Mr. Troupis was one of the attorneys assisting Republican lawmakers in redistricting in 2011, having been hired as a consultant by his former law firm, Michael, Best, redistricting later challenged and criticized by federal judges for the secrecy and political nature with which the process was undertaken.
Jim Troupis is the attorney who advised Senator Scott Fitzgerald that the State Senate had the authority to forcibly detain Senate Democrats in 2011, when the Democrats left Wisconsin to prevent the formation of a quorum in the senate. Following Troupis’s advice, Senate Republicans authorized the Senate sergeant at arms to use force and to enlist the aid of law enforcement to bring Democratic Senators to the Capitol “any time day or night.”
He was David Prosser’s attorney during the recount when Justice Prosser barely defeated JoAnne Kloppenburg in the 2011 Supreme Court race.
Jim Troupis is also local counsel (I guess he will have to let this job go, now) for former members of the FEC in the three John Doe II cases now before the Supreme Court of Wisconsin. (Hmm. Does his appointment to the Dane County Court at this juncture signal that Justice Roggensack, et al., are ready to make us privy to their, ahem, reasoning dismissing the John Doe II cases?)
As for breadth of experience, well, Mr. Troupis does serve on the board of the MacIver Institute for Public Policy. Maybe he’ll give up that gig, too.