The Curious Case of Michael Gableman, Part Deux

As I first noted a few days ago, the folks at One Wisconsin Now have been busy exposing the sordid details behind Michael Gableman‘s appointment to the Burnett County Circuit Court.

As first reported by OWN, former Governor Scott McCallum appointed Gableman to the Burnett County Circuit Court after bypassing the established appointment process, and it was also noted Gableman had donated $2,500 to McCallum’s re-election campaign, including $1,250 in the midst of the appointment process for the Circuit Court seat that Gableman was appointed to. As sordid as the entire situation is, it’s gotten worse for Michael Gableman, with Scott McCallum’s admission on Thursday he manipulated the judicial appointment process established
by his own executive orders in order to appoint Michael Gableman to the Burnett County Circuit Court.

“[A]s governor, the final decision to appoint a judge was mine
alone…,” McCallum said through a Gableman campaign press release.
The media has reported McCallum has refused press calls since an
investigation by One Wisconsin Now released Wednesday showed Gableman
was appointed judge after McCallum ignored established protocol for a
candidate who neither applied in time, nor was a finalist recommended
by McCallum’s own judicial advisory council.

“Governor McCallum confirmed what we already knew, that Mike Gableman
got his job as a judge because that’s what McCallum wanted for his
donor and fundraiser,” said Scot Ross, Executive Director of One
Wisconsin Now.

If Michael Gableman couldn’t be counted on to act above reproach and get his Circuit Court seat without having to buy it, then how can he be counted on to act in an ethical and impartial manner as a justice on the Wisconsin State Supreme Court? Wisconsin deserves nothing less than a judiciary with the highest judicial ethics and experience, and the circumstances surrounding Gableman’s appointment to the Burnett County Circuit Court hang over him like a dark cloud, much like Annette Ziegler‘s own ethical problems have continued to hang over her even after her term on the Wisconsin Supreme Court began.

Wisconsin can ill afford two ethically challenged Supreme Court Justices.


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4 thoughts on “The Curious Case of Michael Gableman, Part Deux

  1. You may also make note of the fact that Gableman was a highly-paid District Attorney at the time, and not a judge…a highly paid conservative who would be in both a financial and political situation to make such a donation possible. It would make sense for a D.A. to support a politician with aligning political views; isn’t that why donations can be made by private citizens?
    Also, you may make note of the fact that McCallum’s appointment turned out to be overwhelmingly popular with the people of Burnett County, which just MAY suggest that there were other factors like–say–objectivity at work.

  2. Well Ross, Gableman may be “popular,” but that doesn’t mean he’s a good judge. Case in point is his record of being overturned on appeal, which ranks him among the most overturned judges in the state of Wisconsin. Gableman’s decisions from the bench have been overturned 33% of the time, which is hardly a stellar record for someone aspiring to Wisconsin’s highest court.

  3. Ross commented, “You may also make note of the fact that Gableman was a highly-paid District Attorney at the time, and not a judge” — but actually, when he made his donation to McCallum on June 18, 2002, Gableman was no longer a District Attorney. He had quit that job in mid-May, 2002, to take another job hundreds of miles away, in Appleton, as an Administrative Law Judge for the DWD Unemployment Compensation Division, starting in the beginning of June. As One Wisconsin Now reports, Gableman was in THAT job when he had many of his “back-channel” contacts with the Governor’s office about getting the circuit court judgeship – and when he made a big contribution. I can’t help feeling that that little piece of the story — Gableman, supposedly a big crime-fightin’ guy, running out on his DA job and somehow ending up in a job as an unemployment comp ALJ for a couple of months, before moving on to circuit court — has some elements that would be interesting if they could be brought to light.

  4. It would be dangerous indeed to everyones rights and freedom if Gableman was to get a seat on the Supreme Court! He is a liar, and as crooked as any politican I have ever seen! I also find it very odd how he has no wife (or ex-wife) or children at his age! I know of no other straight man his age who does not! Sound very QUEER to me! I wonder what his conservative, republican friends would think of him being a “peter-puffer”? I would love to see their faces! ha ha!

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