How many bites at the apple does this judge get, anyway?
Let’s recap what happened in Wisconsin (that link leads to a whole slew of links that track this epic foul-up by the Democratic party in Wisconsin over what should have been a simple enough demonstration of the principle that elections have consequences).
- Wisconsin Democratic Senators run away rather than do their jobs. This prevents a quorum for bills that are primarily financial in nature.
- Wisconsin Republican Senators end up passing what they can, including a critical union reform bill.
- Having returned from self-imposed Illinois exile, Wisconsin Democrats find a convenient judge (Maryann Sumi) to issue a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO), on what is frankly a misunderstanding of the law.
- Judge Sumi makes a mistake in the TRO by only enjoining the Secretary of State (Democrat) from publishing the law. For example, she did not enjoin the Legislative Research Bureau (LRB) from publishing the law, despite the fact that they are required to by law.
- The LRB publishes the law, as per their statutory requirements; as the TRO did not cover that department, they have no choice.
- On Monday, the Wisconsin Department of Justice (DoJ) points this detail out to Judge Sumi and asks her to vacate the order, given that the law is published.
- On Tuesday, Judge Sumi reissues her TRO to prevent implementation of the law.
- On Wednesday, the Wisconsin Department of Administration (DoA) points out that this ruling was flawed in that it: did not in fact indicate that the law is not in effect; explicitly declined to state that the law was not legally published; and since when did Judge Sumi get to presume to drag the DoA (a non-party in the original dispute) into this mess she made in the first place?
- On Thursday, Judge Sumi has to fix her TRO again to rule that the law is not published, in a fashion that satisfies the DoA.
- At some point in all of this Judge Sumi somewhat plaintively (if you’ll pardon the pun) wonders aloud why the legislative branch simply just doesn’t pass the law again.
- To which Wisconsin Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R) effectively replies “Because we did it right the first time, and it’s not like I tell you how to run a courtroom.” Left off is the unstated “Although I apparently should.”
I agree with Hot Air: the sooner the Wisconsin Supreme Court takes this away from Sumi, the better. At this rate, I fully expect the next ruling to feature Bozo the Clown. Come to think of it, if Bozo has space on his judicial docket…
Moe Lane (crosspost)
*I am assuming.