Judge Brian Hagedorn currently sits on the Wisconsin Court of Appeals, a position that former Governor Scott Walker appointed him to after he served for nearly five years as Chief Legal Counsel to the governor. He was then elected to his current position in 2017. Judge Hagedorn is running against appeals court Chief Judge Lisa Neubauer in the April election to replace retiring Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Shirley Abrahamson.

So far so good…except that while a law student he published a blog on political items of interest at the time. From his history above you can guess that his interests lean conservative as did his blog posts. He took a number of extremely right wing positions including positing that court rulings overturning the sodomy laws in Texas would lead to legalizing bestiality.

He called the Supreme Court’s decision overturning anti-sodomy laws a travesty that “should render laws prohibiting bestiality unconstitutional.”

He also wrote that the NAACP, the national civil rights group, was a “partisan hack” and a “disgrace to America.”

Hagedorn also wrote about “why I hate Planned Parenthood” and called it a “wicked organization” that was more devoted “to killing babies than to helping women.” Hagedorn, an evangelical Christian, said he was praying and lobbying to stop abortion.

You get the picture…but still so far so good…many of us have written blogs over the years…some that would get us in hot water of one sort or another over the years…and I imagine there is some serious fodder here if I were to run for something again.

But it’s the 21st Century…there are all of ‘these things’ out there. He certainly had to expect that someone would find fault with his positions and that they would go public and be very vocal about it. And the good judge should have been prepared…had a little stump speech explanation…a rationale…freedom of speech…and all that…and shrug it off even though his opposition wasn’t going to do that. Could he do that?

No…he decided to play the victim card:


Hagedorn, who is seeking a seat on the state Supreme Court, said criticism over the blog posts and calls for promises to recuse himself on cases involving Planned Parenthood and same-sex relationships are attacks on his evangelical Christian views.


“If you have ever been a Catholic or Christian of various stripes you’re going to get attacked for your faith,” Hagedorn said in an interview with WTAQ’s John Muir, a conservative radio show host. “I think it’s unfortunate and that’s not the way things are supposed to be.”

Hagedorn did not on Monday directly address the issues raised in his law school blog posts, but said the criticism is an attack on his faith and that he has always set aside his personal views when hearing cases and will continue to do so if elected to the Supreme Court.

An attack on his faith? I didn’t even know (or care) what his faith is. I do sense a bit of irony that in my lifetime…the first presidential campaign that I can remember…the Republicans were trying to make hay out of the fact that Senator John F Kennedy was a Catholic and was going to get his marching orders from the Vatican…but I digress.

And it is fine that Judge Hagedorn minimizes the influence his faith and beliefs have on his role as judge. That’s the ideal…the perfect…but we wouldn’t have conservatives and liberals backing ‘their own’ candidates if it didn’t matter.

But what I am getting at here isn’t his positions from his blog or his religious affiliation that trouble me. What bothers me is he decided to run directly to a victim hood of his own devising instead of standing up and taking the heat. I found that far more troubling. I find that a disqualifying trait in a judge. It belies the promise to rule based on the law…because in the heat of a campaign…he can’t keep the emotional out of it. Judge Hagedorn gets a thumbs down from me.

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